There is something magical about Scandinavia, and it’s not just the beautifully snowed streets among the stunning old buildings (see my snowy Oslo views here on my Instagram account) . Its the atmosphere the scandinavian people create, and again most popular hygge aside, everything is warm and cozy, a delight to walk around in the city but also when visiting friends and relatives homes. Since I have been quite sick last few weeks it has been hard to join into the festivities and create new memories for myself, so I thought maybe I should look back today and hopefully in a few days I will be able to put pneumonia aside and finally start decorating for the year! Under every photo you will find a caption of when it was taken and why, I think it is quite interesting to see where we were last few Christmases before going forwards with this years!
Photo above : The very last Christmas of 2017. I had just moved to Oslo a couple of months ago and the house was still half empty, I remember I mostly decorated with a few brass accessories, candles and pine branches. I did however wrap presents early enough and photographed the progress in time to post (this year it will come a little bit delayed). I had just discovered all sort of amazing craft stores in Oslo with so many ribbon and wrapping paper options, I was in wrapping heaven!
Photo above : Christmas 2016. Remember all the beautifully wrapped presents with simple brown paper you see on Pinterest? I had been looking for something equivalent for years until I found it a few months before christmas even, in the most unlikeliest of places…at the paint store. Yes thats not wrapping paper you see, that is just a roll of brown paper, the one painters usually lay on the floor before they paint. It looks exactly how I wanted it to look though and best part is that is costs almost nothing. If you are also looking for brown paper, thats the best tip I can give you. You can also see it in the photo below, where I wrapped the pot with it as well! Oh and another tip, if you dont want a full blown christmas tree, this kind of small spurce I think is a great solution with small ornaments!
Photo above : Christmas 2015. I had just discovered that in Norway (and all over Scandinavia), Amaryllis was one of the plants that you bought when only an onion in a pot mid November, then watered it and waited for it to bloom just in time for Christmas. Another favorite for the same reason is Hyacinths (the smell is just amazing), very popular as well although I feel tall Amaryllis is so much more elegant. I decided back then to leave one of my Amaryllis in the bathroom and it became one of my most popular photos on Pinterest! Who knew?
Photo above : Christmas 2015. Guilty of wrapping very little that year, mostly however because presents came wrapped so beautifully I didn’t want to undo that. Like the ones shown above , Byredo perfumes for my sisters in law, I thought the packaging looked great as it was. I contemplated changing the ribbon to black but I ended up leaving them exactly as they were. Small detail, the marzipan chocolates in the bonbonniere. Another Scandinavian custom I was introduced to when I moved to Norway, marsipan love. You can’t have Christmas without marzipan in some form, usually along with chocolate. I resisted at first, but now I can’t imagine this time of year without it!
Photo above : Remember when I said I had just moved to Oslo and didn’t have many christmas decorations in the house? These were part of my Brass Christmas 2017.And really, few holiday flowers, some brass, twinkle lights, it doesn’t take a lot to create a festive mood!
Photo above : Not sure which year this was, but up until then we had bought trees that would just die on us a few weeks later. We decided to buy a potted tree that would last throughout the year so we could use it again next Christmas. That was the plan , of course in reality we took the tree out and snow and cold promptly burned it. By the time we realized, it was too late for it. A good idea if you are confident in your plant management!
Photo above : Christmas 2014. Here we go, my first Hyacinth ! Not bloomed yet, ready in its pot. That year I used my kubus candleholder for the advent calendar. Another Scandinavian tradition (or might be in other parts of the world just not in mediterranean ones), we light one candle every Sunday before Christmas. So when November ends, last Sunday, the first candle will burn, then every Sunday after that and until Christmas one more will be added. I wrapped a little spruce around the base, and while it looks great in the photo in reality you should know they need to be changed every 3 to 4 days or they will all shed on the table. Beautiful to watch, but quite tiring to maintain. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
Photo below : Christmas 2013. I am so fond of this one. You can see how old the photo is since back then I had just started the blog and the resolution I used for photos was quite low. I was wrapping presents with the best I could find being I didn’t know back then where to shop for things like these! All wrapping paper and threads are from the local supermarket, not that it turned out bad though! And I think you can also see what I meant when I said above that I was looking for brown paper that would be just right? The only official brown paper I could find back then , anywhere, it was this thin wrapping paper that had a little bit of texture based on horizontal lines. Did it look bad? Certainly not, it was just not what I was looking for. I also used some plants from outside to further decorate the presents. Some fared well with time, some didn’t. Live and learn!
// Photography and Styling by Katerina Dima
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Styling and photography by Katerina Dima unless otherwise stated.