I don’t know about you, but in our house the Christmas tunes start pouring out of the speakers on November 1. and not a minute later. (I’d start earlier but I think that might make David cry.)
We Norwegians take Christmas very seriously. Not only do we do build up excitement all through advent, from homemade calendars to Sunday candles, but starting on Little Christmas Eve, yes that’s right Dec 23rd, through to the end of the year (gotta love “Romjul”) we pretty much check out, spend time with our families and friends, and enjoy all the holiday has to offer. It’s dark, it’s cozy, it’s splendid!
But whether or not you’re singing along to “All I Want for Christmas” with a jolly attitude at this very moment (as I am), it is time to start thinking about your holiday shopping. So to help you out, I thought I’d put together a little guide of my favorite Scandi-inspired gifts for Christmas.
For anyone who needs a touch of hygge in their life RN (which feels like it covers a lot of us), you can’t go wrong with the Lykke Candle from Skandinavisk. A subtle fragrance composed of snowdrops and rosebuds, carnations and lily flowers, sustainably sourced candle wax, wrapped in elegant design, this candle is the perfect final touch in any home. Not to mention the fact that the word “lykke” means joy in the Scandinavian languages, and who doesn’t want to give the gift of joy this season?
For busy moms I feel like I have the same gift recommendation pretty much every year, simply because it just doesn’t get better than the KAOS Samlesak Playbag. Having basically run my own part-time day care at home all year, this bag has literally kept me sane. My two kids plop it on the floor, tear out all the toys, and once they have played to their heart’s content they move on to the next thing - in two seconds or less I have swooped up to the mess and moved on to my coffee. Save moms you love some time and back pain with your gift this year.
Speaking of stir-crazy kids, this year I came across just the coolest indoor toy to keep them engaged and active all winter - the Wobbel Balance Board! Kids build strength and balance as they rock around on it, use it as a step, hide under it, build forts, the list goes on and it is amazing how they seem to instinctively know what to do with it! (Pro-tip: if you have the KAOS Endeløs wall bar system installed, this also works as the perfect little slide accessory!)
This winter we’re all looking for entertaining ways to spend some time outdoors right? I mean we kind of have to or we’ll all go nuts. So why not get dad off the couch and on to some cross-country skis? This is literally the number one way to stay active if you’re Norwegian, get out of the house and enjoy nature in the cold winter months. Just make sure to also get them some wool socks and base layers - there is no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing!
A classic gift in my opinion is a good coffee table book. New Nordic Houses is a stunning curated collection of images from some of the finest and most innovative homes in remote Scandinivian locations. Not just for lovers of great architecture and nature, but for anyone dreaming of a remote escape this year, it’s a literal page-turner. Plus it adds a touch of elegance to your coffee table, which is really the hallmark of a coffee table book doing its job.
Another great gift for the quintessential Scandinavian, is the Marius vase from Hadeland Glassworks. The rim of this glass vase is decorated with the trademarked Marius pattern, that you might recognize from traditional Norwegian wool sweaters. The elegant design of the vase itself is accentuated by an almost magical effect in how the light reflects through the pattern. (And don’t be afraid to pair this gift with the matching candle votives to complete the look!)
Speaking of patterns, when it comes to textiles you’re hard pressed to find anything more recognizable that those of Finnish design house Marimekko. I am a sucker for a great cosmetics bag, and would LOVE (hint hint David) to get my hands on the Liuske from Marimekko. Made in the classic Poppy pattern, I love two things in particular about this bag. First of all, it is circular and opens from the top - the ideal design for accessing all your bits and bobs. But they even added an elastic band around the edge that helps keep your bottles and brushes upright. For literally anyone who owns toiletries, this is a perfect gift this season.
And last, but absolutely not least, gift some ultimate hygge (and style) with the Mimi collection from Røros Tweed. This gorgeous wool blanket makes use of the ancient Houndstooth pattern, reimagined for the modern nester. It is warm, it is cozy, it is everything we need right now, and absolutely gorgeous. You can’t go wrong with this thoughtful and lovely gift, whether it is for your boss or your best friend.