On the site of a pagan temple or banquet hall, a Christian church was erected in the 12th century in Uppsala. In the Nordic countries we still use the pagan word Yule for the holiday that was once celebrating the solstice. The Encyclopedia Britannica has an excellent summary of the origins and contemporary fixtures of Christmas.
IMAGE: PHOTO BY SEVERIN NILSSON, CA 1880 OR 1890, FROM THE ARCHIVES OF THE SWEDISH NATIONAL HERITAGE BOARD
This magazine rack in iron looks like the perfect way to store our collection of half finished colouring, sticker and activity books while still being accessible enough for small hands. On sale at Swedish home decor store Lagerhaus.
IMAGE: PRODUCT IMAGE LAGERHAUS WEBSHOP
As our family members grow older, the number of screens aka electronic gadgets have increased exponentially. At the moment I´m entertaining the idea of learning how to knit, as a way to increase my own share creative "screen free" activities. Machine washable yarn from Novita Nordic Wool.IMAGE: PRODUCT IMAGE NOVITA NORDIC WOOL
I miss Stockholm more than ever in November, so spend my evenings browsing archives with historical images from some of my favourite places. Watercoloured pencil drawing by Elias Martin, from 1780 depicting an oak at the Djurgården park area in Stockholm, close to Blockhusudden.
IMAGE: Photograph by Jan Eve Olsson, 1995, from the library of the Swedish National Heritage Board (Vitterhetsakademiens bibliotek)via Flickr
It annoys me that so many regular household items have either jelly bean bright colours (pink, blue, green), or industrial cool gray tones. Microfiber rags from Kid Interiør may not transform mundane wiping into an entertaining pastime, but at least they blend in seamlessly with the rest of your fall and winter home.IMAGE: PRODUCT IMAGE KID INTERIØR WEBSHOP
IMAGE: PRODUCT IMAGE CLAS OHLSON WEBSHOP
If there is such a thing as a glaze snob I have to confess to being one. It surely comes as no surprise to long time readers of the blog. Stoneware in particular has to have a nice look and, equally important, a nice feel as you touch it. Many IKEA items with good design fall short when it comes to the glaze, but the glaze on H&M's range of stoneware is the best I've seen in this price range. I'm particularly fond of the green and black, and the the asymmetrical pieces. New color additions are pink and yellow. Whoever is designing this line deserves a hefty Christmas bonus this year.
IMAGE: H&M WEB SHOP
For the past 15 years I've been on the look out for picture frames with a narrow frame at a good price. It was nowhere to find, and IKEA's RIBBA was ubiquitous. I considered custom framing but the price tag was hefty. Finally IKEA launched their Lomviken line. Bliss.
IMAGE: PRODUCT IMAGE IKEA
October is here with cool winds, gray skies and yellow leaves.
The blog is open for its 8th season in all its old school glory.
Many blogs have evolved into lifestyle magazines where digital influencers show highly edited and staged homes featuring commercial product placements. This one sure hasn't. It is still a quiet corner that highlights my favourite seasonal finds of all sorts. Product features and interiors can be visually inspiring, but you don't need to own a red log cabin in the mountain, a Victorian flat in Stockholm or a barn on the countryside to invite Scandinavian hygge into your home. All you need is a tea light, a cinnamon bun, soft spoken music in the background, and you'll be ready for winter.
Welcome back, friends.
IMAGE: AUTUMN IN TYRESTA BY ERIK JUNBERG, OCTOBER 2015
Blooming hyacinths, gingerbread spices, fir branches and lit candles are the traditional scents of Scandinavian christmas, but I enjoy a scented candle in the mix on cold winter nights as you wrap gifts, write cards and sample pralines. The scented candles from Skandinavisk are among my personal favourites.
IMAGE: SKANDINAVISK WEBSHOP
A rustic take on the brown and green trend. Most of our family's winter florals and candles are white this time of the year. Bright colours can offer an instant mood lift indoors, but I prefer the indoors to correspond to the view outside the windows.
IMAGE: BLOMSTERFRAMJANDET,PHOTO BY LINA ARVIDSSON; USED WITH PERMISSION
I want to RUN to Indiska and snatch these little darlings before everyone else. Perfect for small stems of white pink and red poinsettias to decorate your whole house with for gløgg parties. Perfect match for Svenskt Tenn items at a fraction of the price! Get a bunch! The more the better! On sale at Indiska!
IMAGE: PRODUCT IMAGE INDISKA WEBSHOP
When nights get longer and the cold starts to bite... is the start of a modern classic christmas song for children about a family of mice. It was originally written in Norwegian by Alf Prøysen and set to a traditional melody, but has been translated into Danish and Swedish as well.