Santa and the Red Suit
Santa’s red suit can be attributed to the successful advertising campaign of Coca-Cola that featured an old Father Christmas wearing red robe fashioned with a white trim. This campaign took the world by storm and everyone is currently trying to emulate that Father Christmas look.
Coca-Cola Company has, however, admitted that they had borrowed the dressing concept from Thomas Nat. On January 1st, 1881 the first artistic impression of Santa was drawn by Thomas in the Harper’s Weekly. The image showed big-bellied Santa, dressed in a red robe with one arm full of children toys and the other one carrying a smoking pipe. This image of Santa was very popular and was shared in many local dailies all across the world.
In the late 1920s, Santa Claus was first used in Coke adverts. The ‘Coke Santa’ was drawn by Haddon Sundblom, who borrowed the idea from Thomas’ Santa. On the contrary, he made him bigger and jolly and replaced the smoking pipe with a bottle of Coke. Coke has continued to use Santa in their near Christmas adverts.
Many people believe that the red suit that Santa wears is because of Coca-Cola. Well, the soft-drink company played an important role in depicting the jolly Santa, a man we have come to love and admire. However, the truth is that Santa’s red suit appeared in comic books and illustrations that were written way before Coca-Cola’s adverts. In fact, the initial drawing by Haddon Sundblom of St. Nicholas was inspired by Clement Clerk’s 1822 poem “The Night Before Christmas.”
The story of Father Christmas dates back in the early fourth century. During that time there was a Bishop called St. Nicholas who lived in the small town of Myra, Asia Minor (currently known as Turkey). His family was rich and had a lot of possessions. However, his parents died when he was still young and, therefore, as the only child he had to inherit all that wealth. St. Nicholas was blessed with a good heart; that of giving and sharing. He was a kind man who had the reputation of helping the people in need. Other than that, he was fond of giving the town residents secret gifts.
There are many legendary stories that praise the good deeds of St. Nicholas. Little is known if these stories are true but what is evident is that he was a man of the people who had everyone’s interest in heart.
Transformation of St. Nicholas to Santa Claus
After the reformation of northern Europe in the 16th century, stories about St. Nicholas became less popular. But hey, children had to be gifted, especially during Christmas. For that reason, the St. Nicholas name was changed in various European countries, although his character remained the same.
The famous name ‘Father Christmas’ was developed in the UK, particularly in England. He was portrayed as an old man who delivered Christmas presents to Children. In France, he was known as ‘Père Nöel’.
Ancient American people knew him as ‘Kris Kringle’ (christened from the word Christkind). The Dutch settlers who moved into the USA took the old St. Nicholas’ stories with them. They used to call him ‘Sinterklaas’ and this is what is currently pronounced as ‘Santa Claus’. So next time you meet your friends inform them where the name that they get excited about during every Christmas came from.
Red and Green Colors of Christmas tree
Initially, there was a system that defined color symbolism. Until the Newtonian version was invented in the early 17th century, this system was still being used. In the past colors used to be very important as they represented different occasions. For example, white was used to symbolize purity whereas purple was used to signify royalty. Currently, the red color is found in almost every decoration that is associated with Christmas. It is normally used hand in hand with color green, which is normally used in Christmas trees and gift ribbons. But what does it really signify? There are different explanations from different people. Some say that in the past the indoor green trees were used to mystery performances to indicate the Tree of Good and Evil. The red apples that normally hang on the Christmas trees represent the forbidden fruit (this is the fruit that was eaten by Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden).
Another explanation is that the green color symbolizes the rebirth of Christ, and the red color represents His blood. This gives a Christian outlook of the red-green color combination that is applied in the decoration of Christmas trees. It is important to note that this color combination was not invented by Victorians as many traditions have put it. These color symbols were passed down from different generations and they might probably have different meanings today. The color coding used today seems to go many years back than “Christmas” does.
However, the color symbols still brighten up the mood of Christmas just the way Father Christmas could have liked. The green and red colors also offer a complementary finish onto the Christmas decoration. Next time, your parents get you the custom Santa’s red suit remind them to bring along green shoes too. You’ll be surprised at how awesome you complete look will be like.
As a custom people often hang up stockings to put in presents during Christmas. But do you know the story behind this practice? Well, many years ago, there existed a poor man who had two daughters. However, his daughters could not get married as he lacked the money required for dowry (dowry is the amount of money or possession that is paid as a sign of appreciation to the newlyweds). Nicholas heard the story and one day he dropped a bag of gold up from the chimney inside the man’s house. The following morning the poor man woke up and alas! He found the gift and used it to pay the dowry for his oldest daughter. This happened again with his second daughter and this made him wonder who might have been dropping the gifts. One day he secretly hid by the fire in the evening to find out who was this heaven-sent person. When everyone was asleep, he caught Nicholas dropping another bag of gold so that his third daughter could get married. Impressed by Nicholas’ good deeds he came out of his hiding place to have a word with him. To his surprise, Nicholas was shocked and begged him not to tell anyone what he had done. His explanation was that he didn’t want to attract much attention. But soon the news spread in the town, and anyone who received a secret gift thought that it may have come from Nicholas.
Because of his kind deeds, Nicholas was ordained a Saint. Nicholas is a saint for both children and sailors. A story is told of how he helped some sailors that were caught up in a dreadful storm. The men are said to have called out St. Nicholas in a prayer when they were terrified that their ship might sink because of the terrifying sea waves. Suddenly, he appeared and ordered the sea to calm down, and the storm slowly died away. They then guided their ship slowly to the port and shared the story about their encounter with other sailors.
Up to this date, many sailors all over the world often carry St. Nicholas’ statue while heading to the sea with the belief that he will bless the waters and keep them safe throughout their voyage.
Most Christians throughout the world celebrate Christmas to commemorate the birth of Christ. The celebration is normally on the 25th day of December. Some Christians, however, feel that this celebration should be scrapped off their calendar. This is because back in A.D, two pagan festivals were held on this date to worship the sun. To this date, there are a lot of pagan festivals that are held on that day. This is the sole reason why some Christians feel uncomfortable with Christmas.
However, my opinion is that Christmas should be a season of giving and sharing with one another. You should make an effort to put a smile on someone’s face during this season. This is the right time to solve any misunderstanding that may have occurred during the year. Use this time to bring up cheerful memories to your siblings, parents, and friends.