could be more appropriate than to start the new year's
Chronicle off in song led by our 2004 Conductor.
Leading the choir in four-part harmony, this elderly gentleman
is dressed in his finest attire for their opening night
The first Conductor designed by
Joyce in 1982 was dressed primarily in black with a tall hat
and a traditional jacket with tails. He made such an
impression that he became a permanent fixture in the line for
more than ten years. In 1993, the original Conductor
passed his baton along to the Choir Director who led
the Caroler choir in song for several more years.
Our new Conductor is ready to pick up where the others
left off. Dressed in a blue velvet jacket and burgundy vest,
he has not missed a detail from his black bow tie to his gold
watch chain. The Conductor even comes complete with his
own wooden music stand to help make certain everyone stays in
Children Gathering Holly is the second piece in our
Christmas Illustrations series. For this piece, we invited
those who read our newsletter to send pictures of Victorian
illustrations or scraps which they felt would make interesting
figurines. We received over 1,000 entries. Not all met our
criteria (ex: a contemporary couple in scuba gear), but
nonetheless there were hundreds from which to choose. A dozen
of our favorites were posted on our website, and visitors
overwhelmingly selected the illustration submitted by Jean
Campochiaro. This postcard came from Jean's personal
collection of illustrations that her mother started her on as
a child. She was presented the first prototype piece at
Marlborough Barn in Marlborough, CT, one of her favorite
stores. Children Gathering Holly was photographed and
appeared on our 2003 Christmas card.
Cookie Molds & Ginger Cookies
It's the traditions that we remember.
The fresh-cut tree, the stockings on the hearth, the sweet
smell of gingerbread -- these are just a few of the cherished
holiday customs we never forget.
Discover Traditions by Byers'
Choice Ltd., a unique family of merchandise that
celebrates the charm, history and joy of the Christmas season.
Through their world travels, the Byers family has assembled a
distinctive line of traditional Christmas items. Traditions
by Byers' Choice Ltd. preserves the recollections of
Christmas past while introducing customers to a wealth of new
ideas to celebrate the season.
The Byers family discovered woodcarver
Oldrich Kvapil's workshop while exploring the back streets of
Prague several years ago. They were intrigued by his
hand-carved wooden cookie molds. Oldrich comes from a storied
tradition of woodcarvers and puppet makers. He is a
self-taught carver of gingerbread molds, a lost art that dates
back to the 14th century. Today, antique molds, once used by
the local baker, can be seen in museums throughout Europe.
Traditions by Byers' Choice Ltd. has commissioned
Oldrich to carve a series of molds to bring this special
tradition to your Home Page. The Traditions' Cookie Molds
feature Christmas scenes in two sizes and make unique,
beautiful decorations for around the house, especially the
kitchen. Traditions by Byers' Choice Ltd. has also
recreated a series of ginger cookies to enhance your holiday
decorating. Ask about these unique items at your favorite
Byers' Choice retailer.
inspiration for this family was the charming Christmas story,
"Hans Brinker and the Silver Skates," written by Mary Mapes
Dodge in the late 1800's. The clothing worn by the family was
interpreted from the illustrations of a very early edition of
this work. If you haven't read this children's Christmas
story, you may wish to do so. It is still in print. It
describes not only a skating competition, but also Christmas
in Holland in the 1800's.
Our Dutch Mother holds a replica of a wooden cookie
mold which was used for many centuries in Holland as well as
other countries in northern Europe. The Boy holds a
cookie made from the mold. We sell both the cookie and mold in
a larger size. Our Dutch Girl holds silver skates, and
her Father holds a wooden shoe filled with Christmas
Colonial Tavern Woman & Baker with Cookie
The Colonial Tavern Woman is
making sure all is well for her guests by refilling their wine
glasses, replenishing candles and serving them Sally Lunn.
Sally Lunn is a delicious bread which is still served in
Williamsburg taverns. The recipe for it is in the WILLIAMSBURG
cookbook, and with their permission will be shared with our
fans in an upcoming newsletter.
The Baker is holding a cookie and a wooden mold from
which it was produced. The carving on this mold was taken from
a fraktur in the WILLIAMSBURG collection of George and Martha
Washington. A fraktur is a type of illustration on paper. A
larger size of both the cookie and the mold can be found in
our Traditions' Ginger Cookies and Molds.
Lady Wearing a Red Hat
Over the past couple of years, we have
watched the Red Hat craze take off and have received many
requests for a lady dressed in purple wearing a red hat.
Inspired by a poem written by English poet Jenny Joseph,
"Warning, When I'm an Old Woman" has captured the imagination
of a fun loving group of women across the country. The poem
was written in 1961 and is a lighthearted description of a
woman's anticipation of becoming more carefree and spirited
when she's reached old age.
"When I am an old woman, I shall
With a red hat which doesn't go, and doesn't suit me."
The poem goes on to discuss all of the
little indulgences that she will look forward treating herself
to once she reaches the age that she is not required to be as
serious and responsible. The ending of the poem humorously
suggests that it is not necessary to put off these indulgences
by closing with:
"But maybe I ought to practice a
So people who know me are not too shocked and surprised
When suddenly I am old, and start to wear purple."
Consequently, Joyce has designed a Lady Wearing a Red Hat
who is caroling. We have also designed several other women
wearing red hats doing things such as drinking tea and
shopping. These figures will be used for special promotions in
stores who choose to participate. More details about special
retailer events will be available this summer on our website.
This spring, be on the lookout for our third pair of
Golfers. The gentleman is wearing a red jacket over a
white turtleneck along with a pair of knickers. With his bag
slung over one shoulder, our new Golfer is anxious to
start the season. The Woman is outfitted in a green
striped blouse and wears a straw skimmer on her head to
provide some additional shade. She is holding the flag on the
18th green to finish the round before heading to the
clubhouse. These two combine to make quite a fine decorative
accent for a study or office of any golf enthusiast.
As we look out our windows here at
Byersí Choice, we see the snow is finally starting to melt and
the first signs of spring are slowly starting to appear.
Itís been a long winter, and as far as weíre concerned, spring
cannot come soon enough. Our new Gardening Girl is
dressed and ready to join her mother in the garden. With a
basket of flowers under her arm and a gardening rake over her
shoulder, she canít wait to spend some time outdoors enjoying
the warm sunshine. This yearís Gardening Girl can be
found in a variety of sundresses so you can find her in your
favorite spring color.