Department 56 2013 display tips and seminars

We’ve been quiet for a while over here at #milliesblog, and for that we apologize.  I would like to take the time to let you know that all kinds of wonderful things will be happening here at Millie’s, and we’re going to keep you informed and entertained.

There are plenty of new and exciting things happening in our Department 56 villages, and we’ve got great seminars planned.  Expect more frequent updates with LOADS of pictures and short video segments.

Email any questions to


Department 56 Display Class on 16 June 2012

This past Saturday (June 16, 2012) we once again hosted our favorite guest speaker, Stephen Pepin of Showcase Displays, who taught a display seminar.  He focused on using mirrors and viewing angles to create optical illusions which can give any sized display a large city’s visual depth.

Our old friend Mike Sanders from JMS Productions also stopped by and lent Stephen a hand during the seminar.  He spoke about utilizing “photo buildings” to enhance a display’s depth and create an interesting perspective.

Finally, Stephen worked on his ongoing display, where he finished the carving work and began working on realistic water features.

As usual, we had a great turnout for the event–all chairs were filled and all donuts were eaten.  We also gave away a very special train: an MTH Pennsylvania 4-6-0 Ready to Run set, and we’d like to wish a happy congratulations to our winner.  For a little more information on our MTH train sets, click here.

For the first time as an experiment, we hired a professional videographer to film the display seminar, and we’re excited to see the results.  Check back here soon to see a video summary of the seminar; if all goes well, there may even be a chance in the future to purchase full-length video.

UPDATE: JUNE 27 2012

“As usual, thanks to all for attending the class; it is a pleasure to see both familiar faces and new collectors! Don’t miss the next one in July, when I will bring the Halloween display from the 2011 AZ Happy Trails gathering! I look forward to seeing you all again! Warm regards! –Stephen”

#milliesblog – our first post

Today is an auspicious day.

Millie’s Hallmark, a one-of-a-kind gifts, collectibles and Christmas store, has been a fixture in the Ahwatukee, Arizona community for over thirty years.  Today, we’re hoping to become a fixture in your community, and we’re taking big steps in that direction.  In addition to our new blog space here on WordPress, we are also premiering a shiny new website at

On that site, we have added all the current and new Department 56 Village pieces, as well as accompanying accessories and cross product.  We also sell Wee Forest Folk, and are looking forward to adding a great many product lines to our online catalog.

Henceforth, you can check here for entertaining, informative, often hilarious blog posts about exciting products we carry, anecdotes from the private journal of a retail clerk, and fantastical stories from a time-travelling correspondent.  Of course we want you to look at our products, but first and foremost we want you to be entertained.  Millie’s has always been a place where people can feel at home; now, thankfully, you can welcome us into your own home.

Thank you