A look at novelty Christmas patents

Dawn Ellmore
2 min readDec 9, 2021

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Device for dispensing tinsel

As another festive season approaches, Dawn Ellmore Employment takes a look at some of the more interesting Christmas tree related patents that have been granted over the USA.

Device for dispensing tinsel

Back in 1970, J. Postolowski must have wondered “Why decorate a tree by hand when you can use a gun?”, and as a result the gun-like dispenser was invented. We think that decorating the tree has never looked like so much fun!

A self-extinguishing Christmas tree

It is an inescapable (but often overlooked fact) when we bring a Christmas tree into our homes, that trees are flammable — and we almost always increase the risk of fire by covering them in lights, tinsel and other decorations.

These facts did not escape American inventor James Hopkins, who received a US patent for his self-extinguishing Christmas tree in 2011. The tree contains a fire-retardant material which, when activated, can flow through a valve, deflect off a guard located on top of the discharging mechanism, and cover the Christmas tree.

A self-extinguishing Christmas tree

A Christmas tree watering system disguised as a present

Another issue with keeping a cut tree indoors is stopping it from wilting and dying before the festive season is over. Keeping the moisture level up also decreases the chances of the tree catching fire.

Byron and Vicki Main came up with a novel way to address this problem in 2002 –a watering system which is disguised as a present. Fittingly, the patent was granted on Christmas Eve.

A smoke detector angel for the top of the tree

If the inventions described above don’t prevent your tree from catching fire, you could make use of a patented smoke detecting tree-topper, which was granted to Darrell Hudson in 2009.

A smoke detector angel for the top of the tree

Christmas tree disposal bag

When the festivities are over, and if your tree does survive into the New Year, you could use a patented Christmas tree disposal bag, granted to Andrew DeLaura and George Spector in 1983.

About Dawn Ellmore Employment

Dawn Ellmore Employment was incorporated in 1995 and is a market leader in intellectual property and legal recruitment.

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Dawn Ellmore

Dawn Ellmore Employment have over 30 years of experience - We are leading providers of IP and Legal recruitment in the UK and abroad. +44(0)207-405-5039