forerunners of the Christmas ball were apples, shiny polished red apples that
contrasted with the green of the tree, recalling the Garden of Eden and the
lost dream of the Paradise of the Earth, then there were sweets, coloured nuts,
pine cones painted gold and silver, trinkets, strips of fabric. The transition
to the glass balls we know today (and unfortunately the later plastic ones) is
said to have occurred in the mid-19th century in the village of Goetzenbruck
(north-eastern France) during a winter with a bad apple harvest. A craftsman
who produced watch glass had the ingenious idea of producing the first glass
balls to decorate the village tree. The idea was a success and spread quickly.
you are looking for unconventional Christmas balls, you can find three
handicraft companies producing them on youliguria.it: 'Tre Archi' in Sanremo
since 1988 specialising in handcrafted lampworking and glass fusing,
'Porcellana in Arte' in Genoa since 1991 specialising in decoration on porcelain
using the 'third fire' technique, B.F. in Savona since 1998 producing
exclusively hand-painted ceramic objects including a wide range of Christmas
balls even customised ones.