CHARLESTON, W.Va. — First Lady Cathy Justice unveiled the 2017 West Virginia Governor’s Mansion holiday ornament during a reception Wednesday at the Culture Center.
The ornament is made of white opalescent glass and is cut in the shape of West Virginia. It features holly leaves and berries, as well as a gold star representing where the State Capitol is located.
According to Justice, the initial design put forward in June was not of the state, but rather a tree.
“We evolved from a tree to the state of West Virginia to signify the state itself and just how proud we are of the state,” she said.
Amanda Buckner, a Charleston-based artist, designed this year’s piece. Buckner has operated Amanda’s Glass Art since 2007, where she completes commission work for an array of clients, including churches and government offices.
“As an artisan, it is your legacy,” she said. “To be able to be recognized for it on this scale, there are no words to tell you how humbling and thankful we are.”
Buckner said while it was quite the honor to design this year’s ornament, she humorously wished the state had a more simple border.
“We didn’t always like the shape of our state because of the panhandles,” she joked. “I often wished for Utah, but other than that, we were very happy to have the job,
The ornaments can be purchased for $37 at the West Virginia State Museum Shop at the Culture Center in Charleston, Tamarack in Beckley and online at tamarackwv.com. A portion of the sales will go toward the West Virginia Governor’s Mansion Preservation Foundation.