January 31, 2008
Cannon Falls, MN and Neustadt bei Coburg, Germany
The history of the Müller-Blech family is inextricably linked with the history of glass blowing. These stories and more are told in "Christmas and Traditions," a new book by Klaus and Birgit Müller-Blech. Birgit and Klaus both descend from old Thuringian glassblower families and still hand produce to this day in the family workshop, Inge-Glas® mouth blown Christmas ornaments in the old tradition. Christmas, the most celebrated holiday, is explored in their new book in rich detail, from the beginning of glass ornaments in Lauscha, Germany to the customs and stories that have shaped our childhood memories and the memories of our ancestors. From Saint Nicholas to Father Christmas to Kris Kringle to Santa Claus, from pagan rituals to a Christian celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ, the stories and customs of Christmas are accompanied by beautiful full color illustrations and photographs. This 160-page book details the evolution of the making of blown glass Christmas ornaments, as well as the traditions of Christmas over the centuries. It is a must-have for any Christmas collector.
In the summer of 1986, Klaus Müller-Blech traveled to the United States on a business trip. While visiting a fellow Christmas ornament collector, Klaus discovered they had a few old glass Christmas birds, like those his parents and ancestors had hand produced generations ago in Germany. Klaus Müller-Blech is the 14th generation of the original glassblowing family Mueller from Lauscha and is the current owner of Inge-Glas®. These ornaments became the first ornaments in one of the most beautiful and largest collections of antique Christmas ornaments worldwide, which he has collected with his wife Birgit over the last 20 years. Birgit Müller-Blech descends from the glassblowing family Eichhorn, and today designs the ornaments for Inge-Glas®. Together, their collection includes over 6,000 antique ornament moulds. Since 2001, the collection has been featured in an exhibit in the Historical German Christmas Museum, Weihnachtsmuseum, in Neustadt nearby Coburg in northern Bavaria. A significant portion of the Christmas memorabilia in the Historic German Christmas Museum in Nuestadt was donated by the Müller-Blech family. With four centuries dedicated to the art of glassblowing, Inge-Glas® is a true historic link between Christmas past and future.
For more information on Inge-Glas® of Germany, please call 800.967.2066 or visit the company's website, www.inge-glas.com.