If the traditional wintertime explosion of tinsel and glitter decorations makes you cringe a tiny bit, Scandinavian holiday decor can be a treat: Handmade decorations, simple color palettes, natural elements and as many candles as you can light are all characteristic of the Nordic aesthetic, and it makes for some seriously “wow” holiday decor. You can easily keep things from feeling too modern by adding the color red, lots of string lights and faux fur. The Scandinavian look is also a great way to decorate for winter instead of just for the holidays. So if you’re looking to create a cozy and casual holiday season, check out these 28 ideas for bringing those Nordic vibes into your space.
1. DIY Embellished Stockings: Faux fur plays a big role in Scandinavian decor. Even if you’re not facing a brutally cold winter, your old stockings would probably appreciate a furry upgrade. (via Brit + Co)
3. DIY Wall Sign: Can’t figure out how to pronounce “Merry Christmas” in Danish? Let this easy DIY sign reflect your personality and have it say anything you want, from “let it snow” to “bah humbug.” (via Annabode + Co.)
4. Free Printable Christmas Cards: Forget the red and green this year and go for something fresh and modern. These cards rock the black-and-white theme, with a fresh take that gives your holiday cheer an extra boost. Best of all, they are free. (via The Felted Fox)
7. Gingerbread House: If you nail a gingerbread house this pretty, you’d better bet it’s staying up all winter long. But if you’re into more of the edible kind of house, make sure you stock up on candy ASAP and DIY these mini houses. (via Style at Home)
10. Branch and Pinecone Garland: Sadly, not everyone has a mantel to decorate (although you can totally fake one). Create your own focal point in the living room — this (free!) DIY branch and pinecone garland is a cool way to include nature in your decor. (via Love on Sunday)
11. Glitter Star Garland (from $19): Real talk: You could probably DIY this starry garland really easily. But when time flies by, sometimes it’s nice to just have a few pieces already on hand.
13. Triangular Wreath: Nope, there’s no rule that says all wreaths have to be round. You can make this as big or as mini as you want, or string a bunch of them together into a garland. (via Almost Makes Perfect)
14. DIY Himmeli-Style Tree Topper: Himmeli-style decorations are often made out of straws (like this awesome mobile), but if you want a more durable piece of decor, try making this tree topper out of brass tubing. (via eHow)
15. Photo Gift Tag: Lose the bows (they just get thrown out anyway) and go for something a little more personal this year with photo gift tags. It might even cut down on the amount of gift poaching that happens in those wee hours. (via The Merry Thought)
16. Modern Beads Coaster: Give your coffee mug a Scandinavian perch with this easy DIY bead coaster. Leave the wooden beads plain, or dip the whole coaster in paint. The choice is yours. (via Passion Shake)
17. DIY Clay Ornaments: Walk into any store during the holidays and you’ll know how hard it is to find minimal ornaments. The glitter game is strong out there, y’all. Make your own simple ornaments with white clay. (via Say Yes)
18. Black and White Patterned Candles: Black and white isn’t a color scheme you see very often during the holidays, but when you add in natural accents like pinecones and moss, somehow it totally works. (via Trendenser)
20. Simple Table Centerpiece: One of the best things about Scandinavian decor is the simplicity. Yes, that is just an unfinished board in the middle of the table. Add white candles and some pine cones and you’re set. (via Made from Scratch)
21. Beaded Advent Calendar: Use beads for a genius countdown to Christmas. Paint some of the beads or just use the candles as the color accent. This twisty candle holder would look great along a mantel or curled in a circle on the coffee table. (via Nalle’s House)
23. Holiday Card Mobile: Stumped on how to display those adorable holiday greeting cards? Try this unique mobile. The painted dowels almost look like ribbons in those soft colors. (via Sugar and Cloth)
24. Birch Bark Acorn Ornaments ($20): Each acorn is dipped in gold for a little bit of sparkle. Add some rustic hemp thread so you can hang these on the tree or DIY a festive winter garland.
25. Clay and Wood Wreath: This blog suggests using hot glue to attach leaves, clay ornaments and other pieces of decor — the ornaments are easily removable, so you can re-DIY a new wreath for every holiday. (via Sinnen Rausch)
28. Red and White Table Runner: Wooden candle pillars are the perfect complement to this bright red and white table runner. Add mugs full of hot chocolate for a look that’s totally winterized. Pass the whipped cream, please. (via SF Girl by Bay)
What is your decorating theme this year? Have you ever done a Scandinavian holiday? Talk to us in the comments below!