Decorative German Nutcrackers became non-functional pieces of home decor dating back to the 15th Century in the Erzgebirge region of Germany. They were originally created as functional tools for cracking nuts, but over time they evolved into decorative figurines. Most of the pieces dating back to the 15th century were functional and less ornate. Before the 15th century, nutcrackers were generally made of metals and were rarely ornate pieces of folk art. The first nutcracker figurines were simple wooden designs, but by the 19th century they had become more elaborate and detailed, often featuring intricate carvings and intricate painting. These decorative non-functional pieces were traditionally made in the likeness of Soldiers, Kinds, Knights, as well as other professions. Some of these ornate pieces were decorated with various specialty paints, brass / aluminum / and silver pieces, leather straps, animal fur, and many other small detailed materials which add both character and value to the Nutcracker. Today, nutcracker figurines are popular collectibles and a symbol of the Christmas season. They are often used as decorations and are sometimes used in a traditional ballet performance of "The Nutcracker."
15th century nutcrackers were relatively simple wooden designs, often carved out of a single piece of wood. They were typically functional tools, used to crack open nuts by applying pressure to them with the jaws of the nutcracker. These early nutcrackers were often quite plain and unadorned, with simple geometric shapes and minimal decoration. They were mostly used by peasants who could not afford more decorative designs. But as time went on nutcrackers became more decorative, featuring carvings of animals, people, and other designs. The first nutcracker with a human figure on it appeared in the late 1700s in the Ore Mountains of Germany and soon after that, it started to become a collectible item.