Angela Zampell grew up crafting ornaments with her mom and sisters. Tom Butts helped his grandparents tinker with their miniature Christmas village. When Angela met Tom, it was a match made it kitsch heaven. Together with their two pups, the couple pulls out all of the stops – along with stacks of bins – to make their East Providence home as merry as can be.
“When Tom and I start decorating for Christmas we put away our regular home decor so that every nook has a new look,” says Zampell. The couple revels in unpacking their collected stash over mugs of cocoa with holiday movies playing. “We like making vignettes of characters that include new, vintage and retro trees, deer, and the sweetest-faced Made in Japan elves and Santas,” says Zampell, who enjoys sprucing up old decorations.
Butts is a tattoo artist and Zampell is a fashion designer and crafter. When they’re not busy making their mark, making art, or festooning their digs, they’re co-hosting The Craft and Kitsch Winter Market, held December 8-9 this year at the Pawtucket Arts Collaborative. Zampell, who founded and operates the retro-inspired clothing line Modd Merr, also creates and sells mini dioramas under the name Hot Glue Heroes at the event.
Even long after the decorations are tucked away, the couple is drawn to bright colors and graphic elements. “Our style can be described as eclectic, retro, nostalgic, and cozy, and we love Technicolor!” says Zampell. “Of course the latest holiday fads catch our eye as well.”