About Russian Santas: FAQs

Father Frost
The Russian Santa Claus, known as ‘Ded Moroz,’ is a figure intimately tied to Christmas and New Year’s Eve traditions.  ‘Ded Moroz’ literally translates as Grandfather Frost, but he is more commonly called simply ‘Father Frost’ in English. 

His appearance is very similar to that of Santa Claus, but is usually shown thinner and better dressed for the Russian climate with a long, elegant, fur-trimmed robe (especially along the collar) and thick, black leather boots.  His hat is often depicted as round and is also edged in thick fur.  He carries a staff, sometimes referred to as a magical walking stick.  Father Frost has a long, flowing beard and is most often depicted with blue eyes, although some artists are known for painting brown-eyed Santas.

Unique among cultures, the Russian Ded Moroz is often accompanied by Snegurochka, the Snow Maiden.  Originally a character in Russian fairy tales, the modern day version is depicted as the granddaughter and helper of Ded Moroz.  She is frequently painted in a blue robe with long, blonde hair.

What should I look for when purchasing?
As with any work of art, it is, foremost, a matter of personal taste.  Color and home decor are probably the main considerations.  Will you display year-round, or primarily during the holidays?  Which artist’s style of painting do you prefer?  Do you like the decorative style of painting or one with a painted scene (or multiple scenes!)?    How often will the back of the Santa be viewed – perhaps there is a mirror behind the selected spot.  And finally, there is the Santa’s face: which rosy-cheeked visage ‘speaks’ to you?  Do you prefer warm, brown eyes, or twinkling blues?  The expressiveness of the face and carved details on the beard or clothing are where the master carver and artist’s talents are highlighted.  It’s a little like picking a mate: you want one whose face you will rejoice in looking at time and time again! 

How should I care for my Santa?
It is best to keep your Santa free of dust and out of extreme temperatures and direct sunlight.   If you plan to store it for any period of time, we recommend removing the staff (and anything else detachable), to ensure it does not break and to wrap each item in a soft cloth, taking care to store so that nothing will rub or gouge the figure. 

Do you have any decorating ideas?
Do we ever!  During the holidays, Santas love to perch on the mantle and oversee the Christmas hustle and bustle; or be part of your table’s centerpiece, using greenery, and other seasonal decorations to unify.  If you have amassed a collection, they look wonderful grouped together with greenery and in an area where others can see and appreciate their beauty.

We believe Santas can easily be displayed year-round as well.  They are a work of art, so why not incorporate them as you would any other figure or statue--on a bookshelf, credenza, entryway table, or side table?  The options are endless.

Check back, as we will be adding a section to our website with photos and tips for decorating with Russian Santas.