Herrnhuter Stars: More than 600,000 are Made by Hand Every Year
It’s available very small for the windowsill and as tall as a man for churches and other public buildings and events: the Herrnhut Star also known as Moravian Star. We usually visit the German manufactory once a year and put together some interesting facts for you. We will also offer some exciting insights and intriguing facts about Christmas Markets all over the world.
Herrnhut, Germany. Endless packages. They are stacked on the house-high shelves up to the ceiling. Forklift trucks whiz back and forth between the warehouse and the neighboring post office. High season at the Herrnhuter Sterne company in the town of the same name in Upper Lusatia.
The world-famous Herrnhut Stars (Moravian Stars): All made by hand. Every year around 600,000 pieces leave the 120-year-old company with 85 employees.
Customers Need Good Advice
The design of the Herrnhut Star has been patented since 1925. 25 points, mostly monochrome, made of plastic or paper. They are cut, folded and glued. A large part is sent as a kit directly to customers and retailers worldwide. The Herrnhuter are represented at 40 Christmas markets in Germany. In Canada and the United States, they are now also represented at many traditional Christmas markets. MyBrilliantStar has been active at the Vancouver Christmas Market in particular, since 2013. Find a list of North American Christmas markets that feature our Moravian Stars at the end of this article.
Since we know that many customers need a little support with building their stars, we are always happy to help and also have our market employees trained to support with this task as much as needed. In addition to a little skill, you need patience most of all.
The business model of Christmas Markets offers many opportunities for expansion. 85 million people visit 1,500 markets every year. "These are becoming more popular as tourist destinations," says Frank Hakelberg from the German Schaustellerbund in Berlin. The revenues are around 1 billion euros per year - and the trend is rising. The stationary retail sector also benefits from this. "Christmas markets create the atmosphere that contributes to the buying mood," says Stefan Hertel from the German Trade Association.
There are 85 million Visitors to German Christmas Markets Every Year
The German Christmas markets with everything that goes with it - nutcrackers, mulled wine and wooden crafts from the Ore Mountains - are export hits. In the USA, the Netherlands and Italy, for example, Christmas markets based on the German model are opening in more and more cities. For example, our Vancouver Christmas Market advertises with “German tradition/made in Germany”. And the “German-themed Christmas Market” in Osaka, Japan, is one of the biggest winter events.
The Herrnhut Stars (Moravian Stars) are now also on the move internationally. Almost 10 percent of the produced stars, ships abroad, whether into our region Canada and the United States or other parts of the world like Russia, Australia and South Africa."
This works through online shops, but also through specialized partners and retailers all over the world. There are 1,600 of them in Germany. Demand is increasing everywhere. In 2017, the German headquarters put a further 900 square meter production and storage hall into operation. For this, 1.7 million euros were invested.
Herrnhuter is growing, but growing slowly. The reason for this is called quality assurance. Despite all the modernization, the stars are still hand made. And it takes a lot of time before a new employee can produce a star flawlessly. It takes almost a year before someone is able to produce the stars with such millimeter precision. It takes time to create these masterpieces with a sure instinct, using a brush, glue and tweezers.
With customized models this is even more difficult. If, for example, the operators of a Christmas market order a giant Herrnhut Star with a diameter of 2.50 meters, several craftsmen have to help with the installation.
By the way: The Herrnhut Stars not only illuminate Christmas markets in Germany. They also brilliantly illuminate Quebec City during Christmas and hang in different locations in downtown Philadelphia (Dillworth Park), for example, not to forget our beautiful Vancouver Christmas Market and many more in North America.
Below is a small and definitely growing overview of the markets where you can admire and/or purchase our Herrnhut Stars (Moravian Stars) in Canada and the US: