15 Small Festive Touches To Cosy Up Your Home, Swedish Style

This weekend we had our first flurry of snow, and it's brightened up our world! Even so, the chill has meant we've really had to baton down the hatches and ramp up the hygge in our homes! And with the First Sunday of Advent just around the corner (traditionally the day Scandinavians start to decorate their homes for Christmas), I've been busy finding pretty yuletide inspiration. It's too early for a tree, at least in my mind, but there's no harm in starting to think about adding small cosy touches, right? Here are a few simple ideas I love from Sweden: 

1. Overhead wreath: don't reserve wreaths just for the door, string them up over the table for a pretty display. Add battery run fairy lights or candles to bring a warm glow to mealtimes. 

2. Oil lamps: brighten up your home and enjoy evenings under the soft glow of an oil lamp - they can burn for ours at a time! 

3. Swap your usual pendant light for a star! Swedes go to great lengths to transform their homes each season. I love this star lamp from Watt & Weke, it adds a lovely festive touch to the room at Christmas!

4. Lay foraged branches on the table: Find whatever you can in your garden, the nearby park or woods and lay it along the centre of your dining table for a pretty yet simple in-season touch. 

5. Mini, undecorated trees: I know I said this wouldn't include Christmas trees, but who can resist a mini tree in a vase? Left undecorated, it doesn't become overly festive which means you can get away with it as early as you like. It's a great way to bring nature indoors. 

6. Ramp up the candleholders: Group together candleholders in all shapes and sizes to bring light and warmth to the table. 

7. Light up your windows: This Sunday, every window in Sweden will be lit by an adventsljusstaker (advent candle - this one is called Tilpi and available here*) like the one seen above or a star lantern. It really helps to brighten ups the darkness, and feels so welcoming to arrive home to! 

8. Bouquets of Christmas flowers: In-season blooms are a great way to add a touch of colour. Swedes love amaryllis and hyacinths in particular! 

9. Garlands of dried oranges: Dry orange slices and thread them into a garland to make a pretty display in the window. 

10. Window wreath: wreaths don't need to be ostentatious affairs, especially early on in the festive period. A dainty green wreath adds a cosy touch to a window.

11. Gingersnap garland: Thread together pepparkaka for a garland that's good enough to eat! It will fill your home with the sweet smell of cinnamon too! 

12. Paper stars and snowflowers: Swedes love to hang paper stars in the windows, cabinet doors or just about anywhere else in their homes. Add light so they glow up at night!  

13. Wall or window hung candles*: So much prettier than a sconce - a wall hung candle will brighten up the darkest corner of your home. 

14. Don't forget the bathroom: Swedes love to place candles* just about anywhere in the home - including the bathroom! And when it's cold outside, a candlelit bath or shower does wonders for the soul! 

15. Add subtle touches to your entranceway or deck: put a smile on others faces - and your own when you arrive home by placing simple festive touches outside your door. It's amazing what a simple lantern, wreath or bare tree can do to brighten up cold winters days! 

I hope this has put you in the mood for adding a few, subtle yet cosy winter touches to your home! 

For those of you who celebrate Christmas, when do you usually start decorating? And when does your tree go up? 

Would you like to see some more Christmas decorating ideas? Here are a few posts I hope you'll find inspiring: 

Have a great start to the week friends, stay warm! 


*Exercise extreme caution when using candles - always keep them away from flammable items, never leave naked flames unattended and enquire a fire extinguisher is nearby. 


  1. Thanks for the wonder-filled ideas!

    1. Happy you enjoyed them :) / Niki

  2. So simple. So lovely. Your understated, natural holiday decorating ideas over the years have been the most inspiring I've found anywhere. Thank you!

    1. I'm so happy to hear that - plenty more to come! :) / Niki

  3. Do you have a source for the 5 light advent candle in the window? It is beautiful. Lovely images, thanks

    1. I do indeed, it's called the Tilpi and available here: - so pretty! I've also updated the post with the info :) / Niki

  4. I love your custom of putting a candle/star in the window for advent. That's lovely. I'm also drawn to the idea of using simple and natural decorating materials.

    My Christmas decorating varies with whether or not we travel for our American Thanksgiving holiday (which is this Thursday). We are staying home this year, so we will decorate on Friday or Saturday, mostly because my son is home from college and can join us. I usually get all the decorating done in a day or two--putting up the tree is a family event. :)

    1. Happy thanks giving for Thursday Kris! I love that you also turn decorating into a family event, it's one of my favourite days of the year. Enjoy your time with your son / Niki

  5. Nobody does winter better than the Swedes, in my opinion. It's so inspiring.

    1. Happy to hear you also feel inspired by Swedish winter decorating! Lot's more posts to follow! / Niki

  6. I would also love to know where you sourced the candlestick hooder. It’s veautiful!

    1. It's called the Tilpi and available here:

  7. So pretty. I love the simplicity and soft tones so much.

  8. I am always fascinated by and drawn to images of outdoor tables in Scandinavian winter - so beautiful. But, do you really sit outside in the cold weather? There must be a way to make it as enjoyable as it looks!


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