Monday, November 30, 2015

Christmas- Scandinavian style!

Newly Remodeled kitchen just 
in time for Christmas!!
Decorating for Christmas this year has been so much fun! We finished a full kitchen and living room remodel this Fall and have thoroughly enjoyed being able to decorate our updated space. I went with a Scandinavian feel with my decor. I knew earlier this year that I wanted to take my decorations in this direction so I started working on ornaments early. Truth be told, some projects were underway the end of last December. I knew I needed a lot of time to get my projects ready for this Christmas so I had to get to work! 
For our kitchen remodel we added hand scraped maple hardwood floors, white shaker maple kitchen cabinets, white quartz and walnut butcher block counter tops, a white subway tile back splash, tall baseboards and door casings, and semi industrial pendant lights. We absolutely LOVE how it all came together. The colors we chose are perfect for our Scandinavian Christmas decor.
Okay, so my spice drawer has nothing to do with Christmas decor but I love it so much that I had to share. We had this added to our largest drawer and when it arrived it would not fit my large organic spice bottles. What to do?? I had some small canning jars that I knew would be perfect so I added all my spices to the jars and stuck some chalk labels on the top. Perfection! I don't even have to leave the island to get to my spices. This truly is the highlight of my new kitchen!
Nice and alphabetised for easy access.
This sampler was stitched on linen fabric and finished in a chalk painted pine frame. The mushrooms were unfinished from Hobby Lobby and were painted using acrylic paints. I added a couple of coats of clear satin varnish to finish the mushrooms. I think they turned out lovely. 
Banners are an easy to way to dress a window for the holidays. They are so fun and easy to make and look adorable with or without a window treatment. They also work great on a fireplace mantle.
Anyone who knows me knows how much I love these adorable nisse. They are from a Danish toy company called Maileg. Their Christmas line is just fantastic! Mads stands about 3 feet tall and is a perfect fit for the vaulted ceilings in my kitchen. The ornaments are crocheted hearts and baking soda cut outs. 
A smaller nisse (Marie) sits on top of my cabinets. This cute reindeer has lost one of his antlers every Christmas but I love him so much that I break out the super glue. I have not been able to find another one like him anywhere. 
I love kitchen shelves. I don't remember a kitchen in any of my homes that did not have a shelf in it.  A nisse couple, pig candle holders and the tin are all from Maileg. The "Jul" letter were bought unfinished and painted red. The cute little lantern is from Ikea. (Love me some Ikea). 
How cute are they? Way!
You have to have an advent calendar if you have elves running around your house. My kids love taking turns (okay, maybe not love) opening a door for a piece of yummy chocolate every day of the month. Sometimes mommy even gets a turn. This advent calendar is from Germany. I have yet to find a Danish one in the states. 
This pillow was made using one of Maileg's linen napkins. I got some as a gift form my sister last year and fell in love with them. When I realized they would make perfect pillows for family and friends for Christmas this year I ordered more. 30 total! I kept 18 to use as napkins and made the other 12 into 16" pillows. I unstitched the edges, pressed them, trimmed them to make them square and added a contrasting red cotton backing piece. Just for fun (Yeah right!) I added a zipper to the bottom so the pillow form could be removed for washing. I love how they look with the solid red pillow behind them.  
This tray sits on my ottoman and is the perfect resting place for a hot beverage. The darling mug is from Crate and Barrel, The coasters are a project that would have been included in my book but will be featured on my blog. The Scandinavian Design horses set is ready to finish and is available from Reierwoods on Etsy.  I added a few coats of white acrylic paint and some ribbon to finish the set.
Knitted stocking from who else? Maileg, of course! They are available for a limited time though. They come in red too. 
Lets move on to the tree shall we?
This was such a labor of love! I wanted my ornaments to match my Maileg nisse so I went to work creating and buying ornaments that I thought would work well with them. I really like how it turned out. 
 My inspiration for my Danish tree. 
How could you not love these cute little critters!
 Maileg soft toy soldier ornaments. They are being retired so they are a screaming deal right now on
Maileg's Danish flag ornament was available in 3 different patterns when I got mine. It's possible they are no longer available on their website. 
 Dala horses are traditionally Swedish but I do love all things Scandinavian so there will be no discriminating  here! I traced a dozen or so of this pattern onto 1/4" Baltic birch and had a friend cut them out for me. I got all of them sanded, painted with red acrylic paint, top coated with some satin varnish and had ribbons glued on in one evening. 
I adore these little red hearts. My grandmother sent some to my dad after he had left Denmark. I have featured them on a previous blog post. Because my tree is quite large I wanted to make the hearts bigger than I usually do so I used some cotton medium weight yarn and an "H" hook to work these up. I always starch my hearts numerous times with a natural starch so they hang, not droop, on my tree.
This stocking is made using linen fabric for the outer part of the sock and some cotton hounds tooth printed fabric for the cuff and lining. The hounds tooth is available form Maywood Studios. I love their fabric and used it a lot on the projects for the book. 
 Metal heart ornaments from Michaels.
I wanted to add some ornaments to my tree to give a bit of a rustic feel to it without turning it into something primitive in nature. These metal hearts were a great find and the stars were part of a banner that I found at Home Goods. I cut apart the stars and reassigned them as tree ornaments. 
Another garland I found at Home Goods and cut apart to make into ornaments. I added this very Scandinavian ribbon I found at Target last year to the jute hanger. The garland came with half red bells and half cream bells. Perfect!!
 These ornaments are technically not Scandinavian but I wanted to do some and make it as easy as possible. I bought the wood slices and used a Versamark ink pad to stamp one of my favorite Christmas stamp images. Its from Stampin Up. I screwed an eye screw through the top off the slice and added a hanger and bow. The sky is the limit when making these as long as your image fits nicely onto the wood slice. 
 Hobby Lobby had these metal tree ornaments and I thought they would look great. 
Danish coronets were typically filled with nuts or treats and then hung on the Christmas tree. My grandma in Denmark sent a bunch to my dad when he had made his home in the US. I (ohhhh so carefully) picked one apart. pressed it flat, traced around it on some card stock and made a pattern. I have made dozens of these to share with family and friends. They are the epitome of Danish Christmas decor. Ps- I did sew the original back together afterwards and tucked it aside for safe keeping.
The glass ball ornament was made using clear glass balls and acrylic paint from the craft store. Most of the stores carry them at Christmas. I will post some instructions on them in an upcoming blog post. They are great to make if you want to match your other ornament colors. 
 When you see something you have to have at Ikea you better jump on it! I found these early on in the Christmas season last year and fell in love with them. They are made of felt and came in a few different sizes. I went back to look for more once I realized how utterly cool they were but of course they were all gone. Yes, I actually do wear them!
 This is the largest nisse I own. She hangs on the hinge of our coat closet.
 My favorite part of this display is the cute red house. It's a metal candle holder I found at Michaels this year.
 I love these little Tomte. They are from a Swedish company called Larssons. I found them at Home Goods and had to have them.
Bing & Grondahl Danish porcelain plates. The 1957 plate is my favorite because it was a gift form my dad. 

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