House Beautiful (UK) - - Style Planner -

The sat­is­fy­ing snap of a cracker dur­ing Christ­mas din­ner is not to be missed. In­spired by French bon­bons – en­closed within a twist of tis­sue pa­per – crack­ers were in­vented in 1847 after Lon­don-based baker and con­fec­tioner Tom Smith re­turned from a trip to

Paris. Shortly af­ter­wards, a crack­ling log fire led to the cre­ation of a de­vice that made a loud pop when pulled. Tom’s son, Wal­ter, added hand­made pa­per crowns and tiny trin­kets sourced from Europe, Amer­ica and Asia. One hun­dred and 70 years later, there are va­ri­eties for every bud­get. House of Fraser, Paper­chase and Talk­ing Ta­bles have stylish op­tions for £20 and un­der. Cox & Cox, Sophia Victoria Joy and

Nancy & Betty have a good se­lec­tion from £25 to £45. Lux­ury crack­ers, £35 for six, Nancy & Betty

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