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By the 1950s, innovation in plastics and injection-molding meant that snow globes could be made even more cheaply. Even the “snow” that floats around inside the globe, called “flitter” in the business, could be made from plastics—no need to use marble, bone chips, or ground rice anymore (mass-produced plastic glitter, which was allegedly invented in 1934, became part of the snow globe story only later). The water filling the globes was also frequently mixed with glycol, to make the snow fall more slowly, although sometimes it was mixed with far more lethal substances. At least one manufacturer, McMichael told The New York Times, began mixing antifreeze into the water to keep the globes from freezing and cracking during shipping. Stories of children becoming ill after drinking the water from snow globes sometimes made headlines, including one about children who became seriously sick after drinking snow globe water taken directly from polluted Hong Kong Bay.

Most people get location-based snow globes as souvenirs to remember particularly eventful vacations, but apparently some people want mementos of the donut chains they visited. Or at least, that’s the only logic I could come up with for this Dunkin’ Donuts snow globe. The Grumpy Cat snow globe is perfect for anyone who loves memes, anyone that adores Tardar Sauce or anyone who simply hates snow globes. Best of all, it’s not even officially for sale right now, so if you pre-order it, you can claim that you ordered the Grumpy Cat snow globe before it was cool … but it was still awful. More information on custom snow globe.

The first mention of a snow globe featured a man with an umbrella displayed at the Paris Exposition of 1878. Eleven years later at the 1889 Exposition, visitors came to marvel at the steel structure of the Eiffel Tower. There are no examples remaining of these first souvenir globes – but others introduced later suggest that domes were created to commemorate the inauguration of the Tower. The concept quickly became popular throughout Victorian Europe featuring religious themes and pilgrimage sites. “Snow domes are not only fascinating to look at, to hold, to play with, they are folk art”, says collector Nancy McMichael, author of Snowdomes(Abbeville Press). “They are a bridge back to an idealized past we think existed but is actually in our head. It is something we carry with us.”

Americans did not immediately adopt the Christmas tree. According to The History Channel, German Christians displayed decorated trees in the 16th century during Christmas time. Paradise trees, as they were known, were adorned with fruits like apples to represent the Garden of Eden, and candles and sweets as time went on. When German settlers brought their tradition to Pennsylvania, Americans did not immediately adopt the practice as they considered the trees symbols of paganism. By the late 1840s, Queen Victoria and Prince Albert decorated a Christmas tree that appeared in the London News, signifying that the custom was officially en vogue. Source: https://www.qstomize.com/collections/custom-snow-globe.

Patrick Moreau

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