Jim Grundström is a former restaurateur, rag trader, event planner, and decorator. Presently he is the co-owner of interior furnishings boutique Oscar & Clothilde in Stockholm, famous for its ambiance. Consider this your crash course in Scandinavian christmas decorations.
"There is no need to spend a fortune on decorating a home for christmas. Pare down the amount of artificial decorations. The original Swedish christmas is not pink, purple, or golden. The nature surrounding us has a tremendous and beautiful array of colours that we can incorporate. A beautiful christmas palette is forest green, brown, white and rowan red.
Jim's advice for creating Christmas ambiance
1. Lights & Sound
A quick aid to awaken our sensibility is candlelight. Naturally they need to be grouped together. Flickering candlelights and beautiful music appeal to our sensitivity.
2. Floral arragements
Don't crowd all seasonal flowers in a large mixed arrangement. Create unity by grouping the same flowers together. For example, a window sill with five white poinsettias in white pots.
3. Setting the table
Create a buffet in some form where everyone can serve themselves.
'Tis the season of gnomes and trolls but cluster them in select areas rather than evenly throughout the home.
5. A day off from christmas foods
Give the christmas menu a day's rest during the season."
From an interview in Sköna hem december 1998.