Magical Modern Tradition - Page 3

Nostalgia and emotion move grandson to keep alive his family's mid-century Christmas tree creation
Magical Modern Tradition
Christmas eve 1986, the first version of Stoecker's tree to highlight light and reflection.
Magical Modern Tradition

The flat-pack feature makes Bliss's trees especially popular for people with minimal storage. "One of my clients paid more than a million dollars for an 1100 square feet house," Bliss says, pointing to his client's storage issues. "The great thing about this tree is that it lies flat, and it takes up almost no space."

Bliss debuted his design at the Denver Modernism Show in August 2011. "They were really impressed," he recalls. "But there's a difference between people who come up and say 'I love it—that's awesome!' and people who say 'I love it, and I have to have it.'"

The love, though, has not yet spread to everyone, Bliss admits. "One guy came up to me and said he didn't think I should be messing with Christmas."

But most, especially the children, find Bliss's tree delightful. "You have these kids walk up and just stare at it for a few seconds, and then run off to get their moms to look too.

"My grandfather loved kids, so that kind of reaction makes me feel good, because I know it would make him feel good as well."


Photos: courtesy Matthew Bliss and Modern Christmas Trees


• For more information on Bliss's Modern Christmas Trees creations, visit

• Modern Christmas Trees donates $50 of each tree sale to the Alzheimer's Association. More than $10,000 has been raised to date.