COL­LECTIBLES

Start­ing in the 1930s, those lucky enough to be on the Walt Dis­ney Stu­dios Christ­mas card list re­ceived cus­tom Dis­ney il­lus­tra­tions and sea­son’s greet­ings that re­flected the art and his­tory of the com­pany.

Flea Market Décor - - Contents - BY AU­TUMN KRAUSE

IMAG­INE OPEN­ING YOUR MAIL­BOX IN DE­CEM­BER 1931 and find­ing a card fea­tur­ing Mickey Mouse ser­e­nad­ing Min­nie Mouse on a snowy night, or in De­cem­ber 1974 and see­ing the whole Dis­ney crew, from Mickey to Win­nie the Pooh, parad­ing across an ac­cor­dion-style card un­der­neath the words “Joy to the World, Ev­ery­body!” If you were lucky enough to be on the Walt Dis­ney Stu­dios mail­ing list, you might not know it at the time, but you would be hold­ing a piece of pop cul­ture art in your hands—one that came straight from the bril­liant mind of Walt Dis­ney him­self and was il­lus­trated and de­signed by now-leg­endary Dis­ney artists. Jeff Kurtti, au­thor of From All of Us to All of You: The Dis­ney Christ­mas Card, says, “The cards are such a re­flec­tion of the time they were cre­ated—in pop cul­ture and Dis­ney his­tory.”

The cards were first dis­trib­uted in the 1930s, dur­ing a time when Christ­mas cards were pri­mar­ily ex­changed among fam­ily and friends, not busi­nesses. Get­ting one was a heart­warm­ing way of in­clud­ing you in the Walt Dis­ney Stu­dios fam­ily and giv­ing you a peek into its cur­rent projects. In his book, Kurtti quotes his­to­rian and au­thor Jim Korkis as say­ing, “Walt was very par­tic­u­lar about who was on the list to re­ceive a card and, much of the time, an in­vest­ment of time, tal­ent and ef­fort was de­voted to pro­duc­ing the card. But, of course, al­ways the great sales­man, Walt also used it as a way to pro­mote his lat­est film or project—but it was still a spe­cial gift, in the pre-in­ter­net days, when a trip to the mail­box could flutter the heart.”

Each card is a his­tor­i­cal snap­shot of the com­pany, neatly con­tained in 6 inches or so of card­stock. Since the themes tied in with cur­rent projects and il­lus­tra­tion styles, they form an artis­tic time­line that re­flects the pro­gres­sion of cul­ture and tech­nol­ogy—all while high­light­ing the Dis­ney Stu­dios’ deep con­nec­tion with Christ­mas. As Kurtti says, “The tra­di­tions of Dis­ney and the tra­di­tions of Christ­mas are kin­dred. A re­liance on warm feel­ings, the close­ness of fam­ily, joy­ous cel­e­bra­tion, lav­ish en­ter­tain­ment, good-hearted fun and a pass­ing on of beloved cus­toms are

Each card is a his­tor­i­cal snap­shot of the com­pany, neatly con­tained in 6 inches or so of card­stock.

© Dis­ney

© Dis­ney

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