By Santa Jolly
Hello to all UK Santas,
Although I've performed for children for over 35 years this will be my first season as a Santa Claus. I stumbled across Eileen Strom who has been incredibly helpful in getting me started.
I have made a couple of Santa Sacks based quite heavily on her duffle-bag design. I've had a great response to the bags I've made and I have quite a bit of spare fabric so I'd be happy to make some sacks for my fellow Santas if anyone in the UK is interested. I'm not intending to make this a new business venture but I enjoyed making them and it occurred to me that this could be something which might be of interest.
These two bags are about 110cm tall and have a diameter of about 40cm - I got two double size duvets into each one so they're very roomy! The seams are all double stitched and the strap is reinforced with a nylon webbing strap hidden inside.
Here's a little template I've been working on this year to fill my need to carry my I.D. and Naughty-Or-Nice-o-meter,
It yields a 4" x 5.5" Santa Satchel that sits squarely on a 4" belt (or hangs a little past the bottom of a 3.5" belt).
Basic instructions are printed on the template (which should be adequate for anyone with a little sewing or leatherwork experience), but I can write up a more involved tutorial if needed!
I've only finished one prototype so far, but it survived my first season pretty well!
The competitive business of recruiting pro Santas
The professional Santa business can be cutthroat and demanding — and sometimes, it takes an agent to guide the sleigh.
BY ZACHARY CROCKETT DECEMBER 15, 2018 The Hustle EXCERPT: Eight years ago, Kelly Ferrell, a 51-year-old retired cop, was sitting on a bench at a shopping mall in Texas when he was approached by an unfamiliar woman.
“Pardon me, sir,” she implored, “but have you ever considered… being Santa Claus?”
Ferrell certainly looked the part: Since stepping down from the force, he’d grown a “big ‘ol white beard.” He was a little on the heavier-set side, with rosy cheeks and kind eyes He had, the woman said, the potential for greatness.
And so, Ferrell “became” Santa — not by the grace of self-determination or the Spirit of Christmas, but the keen eye of a Santa scout.
Beneath its wholesome exterior, the professional Santa business is a complex, occasionally cutthroat industry, where top performers are sought after much like professional athletes. But once you’re in the minor leagues, how do you learn the ropes? How do you navigate the business side of things, or negotiate contracts?
You get a Santa agent.
The Santa industrial complex
As it turned out, the woman who approached Ferrell worked for the Noerr Corporation (now Cherry Hill), a Santa training and staffing agency.
“I call them Santa wranglers,” says Ferrell. “They hang out at malls or other populated areas and throw their pitch at every white-bearded guy who comes through. They really beat the bushes to find us.”
Intrigued by the adventure of it all, Ferrell agreed to give it a shot.