Sidebar Sidebar Sidebar
Design Inspiration: "A Christmas Waltz", the 2024 Annual Ornament

Design Inspiration: "A Christmas Waltz", the 2024 Annual Ornament

Posted by Danforth Pewter on Jun 28th 2024

The gifts have all been delivered to children around the world. The North Pole workers are enjoying a well-deserved rest after months of hard work. The Workshop is all cleaned up, and the reindeer are cozy in their Barn enjoying candy cane treats and fresh hay.

Finally, Santa and Mrs. Claus have a moment. They light a fire, put on some soft music, and enjoy a Christmas waltz by the tree.This is the first moment in months they have had just to themselves.

The Christmas Waltz is the final installment of the North Pole’s Christmas story. The series started with an imaginative trip to “Santa’s Workshop” and a whimsical peek at the “Reindeer Barn.” This series came from imagining what some of the special places in Santa’s world of the North Pole would be like.

What do you see when you approach Santa’s Workshop? Where do the reindeer live when they are not flying Santa’s sleigh (and what fuels them to keep that sleigh in the air)? And finally: what happens at the North Pole when all the Christmas work is done?

Mrs. Claus, whom we have decided to call “Carol”, is Santa’s rock.She has tireless energy that makes the magic of the North Pole possible.

Designer's Notes

Tim Copeland, designer of this year’s annual, shares...

“I wanted to show Santa and Carol Claus sharing a private moment. What felt right was to show them in a moment of affection, celebrating by dancing by the light of an oil lamp.I think it makes them a little more real and relatable to everyone who knows the work that goes into making a family Christmas happen as well as those who believe the best holiday moments are with those you love. They even decorate their own Christmas tree with beloved Danforth ornaments!
“I was also excited to bring Mrs. Claus into the story and show what she might be like. She’s clearly a force to be reckoned with, but has been sadly underrepresented in Christmas holiday imagery. When I sat down to imagine what Mrs. Claus might look like, Betty White instantly popped into my head and it seemed…perfect. If this ornament were to be a movie, I would cast Betty White to play Mrs. Claus.”

What goes into designing a Danforth Pewter annual ornament? The hardest part is finding a moment, a sentiment, or an experience that resonates with many. That idea is followed by many sketches (including the classic doodles and back-of-napkin sketches) that explore different dimensions of the story.

This particular design started with some ideas about the raucous party that surely follows delivery of the final present and Santa's return to the North Pole. Mr. and Mrs. Claus were certainly dancing, while the elves played some rockabilly. As usual, the upright bass player was in a serious groove.

As Tim and other team members continued to explore the story, it evolved that most of the elves don't want to hang out with their boss on the day after, and Mr. and Mrs. Claus are just as happy to have some quiet time to themselves. The dance is a waltz...and as we see in the final design, it's just the two of them dancing.

A Christmas Waltz 2024 Annual Ornament

In the end, the final ornament is a glimpse through the window at a quiet moment. The North Pole ornaments all have small elements that reference other Danforth designs, fun little connections for you to discover! Look for an oil lamp and maybe some other ornaments you recognize on the tree...

We hope you enjoy thinking about the quiet moments that can be found during the Christmas holiday, taking a break from the hubbub to appreciate loved ones and times of peace.