I've had so much fun looking at and collecting hanukiyot over the years. My family has a pretty decent collection including the one I had as a child, one I bought in Toledo, Spain, a couple the kids made, and of course their childhood hanukiyot as well. The one from Toledo comes with an interesting story. For those of you who aren't history students, Toledo was, prior to 1492, a largely Jewish city on a hill in central Spain, about 60 miles south of Madrid. Toledo was well known as a city that was not only tolerant of it's Jews and Muslims, but that encouraged trade between the 3 major religious populations until their expulsion in 1492 (Jews) and 1502 (Muslims).
Today when you visit Toledo, the Spanish guides and residents try desperately to downplay the Alhambra Decree, aka the Edict of Expulsion for Jews ordered by King Ferdinand and Queen Isabel on March 31, 1492. If they are directly asked "What happened to all the Jews?" they will say things like "Oh, when the Jews left Toledo..." implying that they left of their own volition and not because they were forcibly thrown out of the country by Christians intolerant of their religious beliefs.
I was poking through the shops when I found one that had, way up on the tip top shelf of his store, a brass hanukiah. When I asked to see it, the shopkeeper told me in Spanish that it wasn't the right number of branches and nobody wanted it because it wasn't Jewish. Ahem. In my broken Spanish I explained that it was a hanukiah and not a menorah, and that indeed I did want it for just that purpose. I took it home with me and have used it ever since.
Here are out hanukiyot. I'm sure we'll add to this collection as the years pass.
And now, part two of the great hanukiyot hunt.
Dino here would make any young kid happy. He's cute, bright and very different than many of the standard kid's models.
I don't know about you, but I love me a weiner dog. This guy is totally adorable, especially for a lover of the canines.
This one reminds me of Monty Python's Flying Circus. The stylized angels are so happy.
Another tree of life theme, this one has a kitty, a bunny, some birds, and even a pomegranite hanging off it. I like this one a lot. Cheerful, isn't it?
You can't forget Sarah Palin's contribution to the hanukiyot collection, can you? Perfect for your Alaskan Jewish friends. Or Canadians!
Dancers in your family would like this model, but I'd be afraid of how it stands up with cats in the house. It looks fragile. Reminds me of a colorful interpretation of the Western Wall. Solid glass, I like the bold coloring. Another Gary Rosenfeld design, this one is Kosher. I don't really care for his work, but again, people love it. It's just not me. This kitty is much more me. I love the smiley face and for some reason it just makes me happy. An interpretation of an Israeli village, it's bright, cheery, and friendly. Has a matching tzedakah box.
While I really love the design of this one, it's not Kosher. So pretty though.
Oh look, another tree of life design. This one is a bit to feminine for me, but would make a great bat mitzah present for the right girl.
This one has my name all over it. Black, mysterious, modern and so graceful. Love it!
Last but certainly not least, this one is for my friend Nina, lover of fine shoes, clothes, furniture and anything else that has the highest price tag in the store. Like me, Nina has fallen on fairly hard times these days, but I'm wishing and hoping that some day she can have this hanukiyot on her windowsill. Because she deserves it! Mwah....
Labels: art, crafts, design, Holidays, Jewish