Much has been said about Elf on the Shelf and how parents either adore Santa’s favourite helper or despise the pint-sized surveillance scout. But did you know the elf that’s taken over annual festivities was once an underdog in the world of holiday traditions?
Elf on the Shelf gets its unique knee-hugging appearance from toys built by Japanese toymakers after the Second World War, the Conversation reports. Their bodies were made with wire and soft cloth, making them easy to place anywhere.
It’s that versatility that found these toys perched in North American homes and on the family tree of Carol Aebersold, who later grew up to become the creator of Elf On The Shelf. Watch the video above to hear how her road to winter dominance had a rocky start.
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