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Dia De Los Muertos - DAY OF THE DEAD - AMERICA'S NEWEST HOLIDAY

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NEW Skeleton Folk Art

Artisans all over Mexico love Day of the Dead because it's the busiest time of the year for them - taking all their calaveras & skeletons to the burgeoning open air markets or setting up at temporary arts & crafts festivals in front of the cemetery walls. Their joyous skulls and satirical skeleton scenes mock death and add color & fun to the family ofrendas. The family tradition is to buy little skeletons every year from the artisan vendors which they use to decorate their tombs & altars to delight the visiting muertos!
Check out our NEW Featured Arrivals & NEW Day of the Dead Gems.

Skeleton bone cat rattle on a colorful stick with ribbons

Bone Cat Rattle

Papier mâché skeleton cat is 5" deep x 3" high with a colorful 18" stick and ribbons. Mexico.
A5178 $15 each

 

Bone Dog Rattle

Papier mâché skeleton dog is 5" deep x 3" high with a colorful 18" stick and ribbons. Mexico.
A5177 15 each

2 skeleton bone dog rattles on colorful sticks with ribbon

6 exquisitely hand-painted clay sugar skulls.

French Garden Victorian Skull

Awesome one-of-a-kind clay skulls. Scrolly vines are exquisitely painted by hand by women’s workshop in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico.

4'' high x 3.5'' wide x 3 1/4'' deep

Colors: green, magenta, turquoise, white, metallic or yellow.
Choose your color preference in ORDER NOTES upon checkout.

These are a real treasure for your ofrenda.

A5214 $48 each

Metallic Knick-Knack Boxes

All sides are covered in reverse painting and metallic foil. Very finely detailed, despite the photo. One of our best gift items ever!
Wooden metallic box with  colorful sugar skull and flowers

Where do you keep all your paddy-wacks? You'll love to use this super cool sugar skull box for little things like earrings, car keys, chocolate ganache truffles, stack of coasters or the proverbial paper clips. Great gift for man or woman.

The design is reverse painted on glass then backed with scrunched metallic foil. Finely finished hinged box and all wood is painted black. Design is on all four sides & top. 4.5’" x4.5" x 2" high

Sugar Skull Box
A5215 $35 each

Metallic box with colorful sugar skull surrounded by flowers
Metallic box with romantic skeleton on bended knee to a catrina.

Do you need a unique & romantic gift for the one you love? This is perfect.

This romantic skeleton serenade box can be filled with keepsakes - used ticket stubs, pressed flowers, a beach stone, milagro, fortune cookie fortunes, small photos, jewelry or a lock of hair.

4.5’" x4.5" x 2" high

Skeleton Serenade Box
A5216 $35 each

Metallic box with romantic skeleton on bended knee to a catrina.

Large white paper mache skull with red painted decorations and gold  foil eyes & glitter.

Large Glitter Skull

9" high x 8" wide x 9" deep

Four large colorful, elaborately decorated paper mache glitter  skulls with 2 cempesuchil flowers. Medium size red paper mache skull with purple painted decorations and gold  foil eyes.

Medium Glitter Skull

7" high x 5" wide x 5" deep

Papier Mâché Glitter Skulls

Finally a new papier mâché skull that dazzles even the most jaded of Day of the Dead collectors! These are extremely well made and stuffed full of free hand painted designs, then encrusted in "diamantina" glitter. They are molded like all papier mache skulls, but hand-shaped to give the skull a real folk art feel. Many large ones have tin foil eyes. If you were to look at 50 skulls, only a few would be duplicated color combinations. Bright assorted colors, 2-tones and a few B&W. Mexico (if there is a color combination you don't want, please write us a message in the Order Notes on check out). Large Glitter Skulls measure 9"H x 9"deep x 8"W. Medium Glitter Skulls measure 7"H x 5"deep x 5"W. Collectors will love these!

A5022 Large Glitter Skull $72 each  •  A5021 Medium Glitter Skull $48 each

Romantic Papel Picado Banners

Celebrate love with a colorful Mexican tradition dating back to the 17th century. These hand-cut tissue paper banners can flutter overhead in the garden for your first amorous embrace - gardenia scented. - or be silhouetted by a midnight full moon while sharing a way too expensive bottle of red wine on a balcony with a serenade playing below.... or just hand them up for an anniversary, rehearsal dinner, wedding or Valentine's Day!

A large string has 10 "pages" and extends to approximately 20 feet.

Designs: Amor Eterno (eternal love), doves, hearts
Colors: Rosa Mexicana, yellow, bougainvillea, marigold & red

Large Romantic Papel Picado Banner - in-stock
B4042 $18 / strand

XL Bendable Novios

Are you having a really big wedding cake? These hand made jumbo sized novios might just be what you need so that your uncle Charlie in the back of the reception hall can see them. These dramatic novios are put together with wire so you can move their arms, legs, heads & bodies…. Are you thinking of a little animation in your video? These would be lots of fun to use in your wedding photography.

The black wood base is 2" x 6" and these are made with love in great detail by the nicest artist in Puebla, Mexico.  10.5' high x 6" wide x 2" deep.

Makes a great anniversary & Valentines day "amor eterno" present too!

A5172 $65 each

More Romantic Skeleton Folk Art

More Day of the Dead themed Weddings

Beautiful, happy, bendable jumbo-sized skeleton novios on a black platform

Escape to the Honeymoon

This whimsical framed wedding couple will make you giggle with happy memories of your wedding day. It's a lovely gift too - it's beautifully detailed, hefty & well made in Peru from wood & traditional potato paste skeletons.

The happy couple have expressive movement - the bride has her little bouquet, low-cut bustier style gown with gold trim and with a coy cock of her head, she's sweetly hanging on to the arm of her groom as if to say, "enjoy my demure demeanor for the photo because after that, I'm the Alpha Dog in this relationship!" The Groom is handsome in his long black tails, magenta bow tie and top hat. Both have gorgeous detailed hands & feet which are very hard to make in potato paste. 26" x 20" x 3"

A5210 $65 each

Enramada – Spirit of the Garden Retablo

This impressive skeleton wood nicho is an excellent piece of folk art to stand on a shelf or hang on the wall. It's reminiscent of looking down on a fertile, verdant garden to witness a spirit about to spring to earth with a joyous entourage of colorful roses.

The artist captures the energy, movement & life of the spirit with his mastery of sculpting potato paste & detailed painting. The fanciful wood box is painted in vintage retablo style. 9" high x 4" wide x 2" deep. Peru.

A2029 $95 each

Fisherman Retablo coming soon

Skeleton Bread Bakers with Rustic Stone Oven

3 happy skeleton bread bakers making pan de muerte, large rustic stone stove, firewood and baskets of bread.
Click photo for larger image

Winner of the Best Folk Art Find of 2015!

The three skeleton spirit bakers are busy at work making the traditional and iconic "bread of the dead" (pan de muerto). There's a lot of story being told in this retablo. As you open the doors, you see the skeletons in their baker's hats, forming the bread into bone shapes before sliding them into the stone oven. Every aspect of this nicho is beautifully executed with mounds of bread, detailed skeleton & delightful paint job. This piece is a collector's dream. Very limited quantities. 4" wide x 5 1/2" high x 2" deep. Peru

A5150 $90 each


Two festive papier mache Catrina skeleton sonajas (rattles) with fancy colorful hats on long wooden sticks.

Three festive papier mache Frida  skeleton sonajas (rattles) with colorful flowers on long wooden sticks.

Sonaja skulls measure approx 5" x 5" x 5" plus hats and sticks are approx 18" long

Papier mache bride and groom sonajas (rattles) on a stick. The bride has a long veil, the groom a dapper red feather in his top hat.

Sonaja - Catrina

Kind of a whimsical cross between Catrina and the Flying Nun, these hefty rattles capture the fun of the holiday. Assorted color & flower combinations. Mexico.
A5011 $22 each

Sonaja - Frida

Once again, Frida is immortalized in another folk art form - the rattle! Fun to have sitting on your coffee table to distract the eye from the stack of remotes. These are decorative folk art and dangerous for children. Mexico.
A5012 $22 each

Sonajas - Bride & Groom

These versatile bride & groom rattles with top hats & fancy veils transition from the wedding reception to the cemetery with style and ease. Simple Chanel classic black & white formal outfits make these rattles great keepsakes. These are decorative folk art and dangerous for children. Mexico.
A5010 $42 / pair

4 skull rattles, 2 with sombreros and all with ribbon on a long stick

Sombrero Skull Ribbon Rattle

(left) Is this your magic wand? These rattles will be fun to take to parties or processions or stick into floral arrangements or a pot of (uncooked) beans! The artist makes them on colorful sticks with bright hats, tied with ribbons. Papier mâché skull is 6 1/2" x 4" x 3". 20" head to bottom of stick. These are decorative folk art and dangerous for children. Mexico
A5131 $16 each

Piñata Ornament

(right) These mini piñata ornaments are exquisite handmade precious things that can be used as a hostess gift, party favors for weddings, fiesta decor or small Christmas tree gifts. It's so nice to find affordable traditional hand made folk art as an alternative to factory made junk. 6" across. Assorted colors. Mexico.
A5140 $12 each

Multi-colored papier mache pinata ornament.

Papier Mâché Procession Masks

In Mexico, the devout parade around in processions in the cemeteries carrying santos, incense & candles as they pray, chant and sing on November 2. In more recent times, more popular processions take place in the town squares & surrounding streets the week before Day of the Dead with musicians, participants in costumes, masks and even skull face painting. Theater performances and interpretive dance are becoming common in Mexican cities too.

In the U.S. where traditional Halloween traditions are increasingly interwoven with Day of the Dead iconography, Catrinas and Fridas are showing up to costume parties.

Our new Papier mâché artist, Monica Torres, has made these strong & high quality mache masks with really large eye holes so they can really be worn by folklorico dancers or just hung on the wall. While these vary in size, the hefty sized skulls (without hat or flowers) measure approx 9 1/2" hight x 7" wide. Mexico. $40 each

$40 each

Paper mache procession mask - smiling Pachuco male skeleton mask with blue hat

A5107 Pachuco (many fun hat colors)

Paper mache procession mask - Carmen - smailing female skeleton with a bunch of colorful flowers on her head.

A5106 Carmen (side flowers)

Paper mache procession mask -smiling Friday skeleton mask with a corona of colorful flowers on her head

A5104 Frida (corona of flowers)

Paper mache procession mask - Bigotes - smiling male skeleton with brown heair and a huge mustache

A5108 Bigotes

Paper mache procession mask - Sarita smiling female skeleton with lots of makeup

A5105 Sarita

Paper mache procession mask - smiling Rosita skeleton mask with a single rose in her hair

A5102 Rosita (single rose - comes in many colors)

Paper mache procession mask - your basic smiling skelton mask with blue sparkle decorations
A5109 Calaca - no lipstick

Paper mache procession mask - smiling Catrin skeleton with red top hat mask

A5103 Catrin with Top Hat - some with bigotes. Hats are assorted red or black

Gigante Retablos

These spectacular piece of folk art are the original creation of Mexico City artist Rafael Rodriguez. He carves and makes many of the furniture and mini elements inside these beautifully handcrafted retablos. Scenes are extremely well detailed and are a showcase piece for any collector, restaurant or museum. These diorama type retablo scene boxes were first made by 19th-century resident nuns in the Santa Monica convent in Puebla. Wood with glass. Because of the fragility of these pieces, they should be picked up at our warehouse. Please contact us for details.

Click on the images below for larger photos.

Large handmade Day of the Dead ofrenda with decorated ofrenda table, skeletons, papel picado, marigolds and words from 1939. Large handmade wooden retablo showing a sugar skull maker at his shop with lots of sugar skulls, bags of sugar, a friendly skeleton, stove and words from 1937.

Gigante Retablo – Day of the Dead Ofrenda

20" wide x 7" deep x 14" tall. Mexico
A4101 $525

Gigante Retablo – Sugar Skull Maker

20" wide x 7" deep x 14" tall. Mexico
A4102 $525
Repousee Chef ornament with a skeleton fish, dangling earrings, golden skillet and shoes.

Repoussé Chef with Skeleton Fish Ornament

This skeleton chef prefers fried fish over tamales! Her big, fashion forward movable earrings compliment her chef hat, floral dress and gold high heels. Her fish wiggles as she grips it with her oven mitt before sautéing it in her French gold skillet in a reduction tamarind & wine sauce. Great gift for any of your DoD loving friends who love to eat!
A4108 $20

 

Repoussé Skeleton Cyclist Ornament

Bike aficionados will love this intricate, hand hammered skeleton on a souped up cycle. This 3D piece is equally elaborate on both sides. Yes, the wheels turn! 5" tall x 4" wide (+ 2 1/4" hanger.)
A2312 $24
Colorful Respousse skeleton bicyclist ornament

Repousse metal work was introduced to Mexico during the French control of Mexico in the late 1800's and has been around ever since. Church decor, metal art, jewelry and tourist art still draws heavily from the repousse technique of hammering and stretching sheet metals into beautiful folk art.
See more NEW Repoussé Ornaments & read about the artists who make them here

Empty white retablo with painted flowers on the inside and outside doors and top.

Create Your Own Retablo Shrine

Make your own shrine! Empty hand-painted retablo with leather hinges. 4" wide x 8" tall x 2" deep. Peru

A2027 $20 each

 

See finished retablos in our Collector's Gallery, Romantic Skeleton Folk Art and New Skeleton Folk Art pages.


Flaming Heart Calaveras

Clay. Hollow with cutout eyes.
3 1/3" tall x 3" wide x 3 1/2" deep
$28 each

A3018 Flaming Heart Calavera, Rosa Mexicana
A3019 Flaming Heart Calavera, Black
(out temporarily)
A3020 Flaming Heart Calavera, Blue
(out temporarily)


Sugar Skull Wall Masks

Fine artist quality plaster. Masks have a ring on the back to put on the wall. 7” tall x 5” wide
A4074 Rosa Mexicana Wall Mask $39 each A4075 Bone Wall Mask $39 each A4076 Marigold Wall Mask $39 each

Castillo style skeleton bread baker at his oven with his skeleton dog

Castillo Style Day of the Dead Village Scenes Pottery

The most expensive Castillo piece I've ever seen was in Puerto Vallarta, and it was an entire intricate circus scene that cost over $13,000 made by one of the famous first generation Castillo artists. There are many talented offshoots of this huge family these days.

It's unusual to see a Mexican pottery that is fired and then painted with natural dyes or acrylics in place of glazes. The Castillo style pottery is beautiful, interesting and makes wonderful additions to any Day of the Dead collection... and yes, still painted with one-hair paintbrushes. We hope you enjoy these museum quality Castillo style pieces!

See more Castillo Style Pottery

Castillo Bread Baker

4 ½” deep x 6 ½ ”wide x 5 ½ high. Mexico
A2193
$195 each

Be sure to check out our NEW Featured Items and NEW Day of the Dead Stuff

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