Even though there are written records of the beginnings of the real establishment of the tree as a symbol of Christmas long before, it was not until the nineteenth century that France began to take it up. It remains however reserved for the aristocracy and the bourgeoisie. And the decorations take the form of ribbons, small objects or even sweets that are hung on the branches.
When the population takes over the tradition, apples make their comeback as the main object of decoration of Christmas trees. The fruit was still in season and cheap. But in 1858, the weather was harsh and a major drought deprived the Vosges of apples. So, to prevent the Christmas trees from being left without decoration, a glass blower from the Goetzenbruck glass factory made some glass balls. Balls colored in red to recall both the shape and color of the apple. Very quickly, the tradition took hold and production exploded. Today, plastic has largely replaced glass, but several tens of thousands of glass Christmas ornaments are still produced in the Vosges region where they were born.
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