Other countries other manners. This statement, which is as banal as it is correct, applies to many situations in life, but above all to the Advent season and Christmas. Every year on the first Advent, incense smokers, nutcrackers and lovingly hand-painted angels made of wood march into the living rooms of Germans. In addition, filigree turned pyramids decorated with small figures rotate on the table. There are arcs of light in the windows, and the illuminated poinsettia is a must for many people. The northern lights of Europe decorate their living rooms at Christmas in a completely different way. Reduced to the essentials, as usual simple - in white, dark blue, red and black, many Swedes, Finns, Danes and Norwegians decorate the house in Advent. Wood, paper, and nature play a major role. Would you also like to add some Scandinavian Christmas flair to your home? Here are a few ideas and suggestions.
Julenisse, Tomte Gnome or simply gnomes are the names of the funny bearded people who move into Denmark and Norway in the run-up to Christmas. The trademark of the felty fellows: they have pulled their hats completely over their faces, only their bulbous noses stick out between the beard and the pointed hat. Possible reason: You want to remain anonymous. They come in all sizes, with or without dangling legs. The gnomes are part of the Scandinavian Christmas decorations, just like the incense smoker is in this country. As a rule, they appear as a couple of elves.
Stars are one of the most important symbols of Christmas. Stars also play a central role in Scandinavian Christmas decorations. Folded paper stars in particular stand or hang in many living rooms, especially in Norway. If you don't have the creativity or time to do your own handicrafts, you can get the paper stars ready to hang up. The most popular colors are gold, white, and green. Similar to Germany, some can also be fitted with light bulbs, like this stylishly perforated star from Best Season. Big advantage of the paper stars: They can be used flexibly. They can be hung on the wall or in the window with a thin thread. Individually or as an ensemble in different colors and sizes (a set of nine stars is available here). Cardboard stars are also suitable as a standing decorative element for sideboards or shelves.
In Norway in particular there are hardly any households without light houses. The different shapes of the houses can be perfectly combined with each other. A tea light can be placed on the base plate, which then lets the house shine in a warm glow. As a rule, the houses are made of unglazed porcelain. So caution is advised here. Once it has slipped out of your hand, the little house is sure to be gone. The best places for the small or large row of illuminated houses along with a small church and canal house are the window sill and the mantelpiece.
In Scandinavia, wood is also often used as a decorative element outside of the Advent and Christmas season. When the first of the four numbered Advent candles burns at the beginning of December, other wooden figures move into the living rooms. Above all small fir trees. In contrast to the delicately carved ringel or chip trees from the Ore Mountains, the decorative trees in the far north are rather puristic. But no matter how cool and smooth the light-colored wood may appear: on a square piece of furniture, several of these six to ten centimeter high trees stylishly bring the forest into the living room. In Sweden, so-called Dala horses (Dalahest) enrich the festive decorations in December. They are also made of wood and can often be painted and decorated yourself.
As spartan and discreet as the Scandinavians decorate, they bring light into their four walls just as generously during the Christmas season. Probably also because there are not a single or very few hours of sunshine on many days in northern Europe in the winter months. In addition to fairy lights, which are attached both inside and outside, they love candles of all sizes, colors and shapes. The matching candlesticks and candle holders are often made of glass, porcelain, clay, concrete or wood, like this lantern on a teak base. They are also placed in front of the front door or on the windowsill.
In order to make yourself really cozy on the sofa or in the armchair during the Christmas season, pillows and blankets to snuggle up in are a must. By far the most popular motifs: deer and moose. Anything you like is allowed here, of course. The main thing is cuddly. In the best case, you pick up the colors with the blanket that you have already used in the Christmas decorations. This cozy Christmas blanket with a deer motif and a typical Norwegian pattern is both a throw for the sofa and a classic blanket for cozy evenings.
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