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Do you remember Christmas in the 1970s?

A look back at the holidays 5 decades ago.

By Cheryl E PrestonPublished 3 months ago 3 min read
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    This article was assisted in part by AI to give the reader a more vivid account of the 1970s holidays.

Christmas past

During the 1970s I was a preteen, a teenager and a young adult. This was a fun time for the holidays and a great decade to look back and reflect upon. Christmas in the 1970s had a distinct cultural flavor, reflecting the trends and traditions of the time. We all have our own personal memories but here are some aspects that characterized Christmas during that decade in a general manner:

Holiday Decorations

Tinsel, colorful lights, and aluminum Christmas trees were popular decorations. I can recall sitting for up to an hour at my grandma's house and my mother's home watching the color wheel turn and light up the aluminum tree with beautiful colors. It seemed like magic and added to the atmosphere of the season.

Practically everyone I knew had an aluminum tree but like all fads this did not last but a few years and green trees were in again. One thing that never went out of style was evergreen trees. The 1970s saw a shift from the traditional green Christmas tree to more colorful and artificial options. People embraced the modern and vibrant aesthetic of the era.

Christmas Music

Classic Christmas songs from the 1940s and 1950s continued to be popular, but the 1970s also introduced some new hits. Songs like "Feliz Navidad" by Jose Feliciano and John Lennon's "Happy Xmas (War Is Over)" became holiday classics during this period. The Jackson 5 singing their upbeat version of Santa Claus is Coming to Town and the Temptations rendition of Silent Night were popular during this decade.

By Ekaterina Kasimova on Unsplash

Holiday Fashion:

Ugly Christmas sweaters and festive clothing were already a thing in the 1970s. People embraced bold patterns, bright colors, and quirky designs, reflecting the overall fashion trends of the decade.

Toys:

Popular Christmas toys in the 1970s included iconic items like the Easy-Bake Oven, Atari 2600 (introduced in 1977), and the beginning of the Star Wars franchise, leading to a surge in demand for Star Wars action figures.

TV Specials:

Christmas-themed TV specials were a significant part of the holiday season. Classics like "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" and "A Charlie Brown Christmas" continued to be enjoyed, while new specials were introduced during the 1970s.

Movies:

The 1970s saw the release of several beloved Christmas movies, including "A Christmas Carol" (1971), "Silent Night, Bloody Night" (1972), was a horror film and I thought it was inappropriate. The animated adaptation of "The Year Without a Santa Claus" (1974).

Economic Challenges:

The 1970s was a period marked by economic challenges, including inflation and the oil crisis. This influenced holiday spending, with some families opting for more economical celebrations.

DIY Crafts:

Homemade crafts and decorations were popular during this time. Families often engaged in DIY activities, creating ornaments and other festive items to decorate their homes.

Holiday Specials on Television:

Christmas-themed episodes of popular TV shows were a staple during the holiday season. Shows like "The Brady Bunch," "Happy Days," and "The Partridge Family" had special episodes centered around Christmas.

Traditional Celebrations:

Despite the changing cultural landscape, many families continued to observe traditional Christmas customs, such as attending church services, exchanging gifts, and enjoying festive meals together.

In summary, Christmas in the 1970s was a blend of traditional customs and the influence of the evolving cultural and economic landscape of the time. It was a period when people embraced both the old familiar and the new traditions in their holiday celebrations.

Pop Culture
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About the Creator

Cheryl E Preston

Cheryl is a widow who enjoys writing about current events, soap spoilers and baby boomer nostalgia. Tips are greatly appreciated.

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  • Dharrsheena Raja Segarran3 months ago

    Oooo, a horror movie, huh. I gotta watch Silent Night, Bloody Night!

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