Thursday, 8 December 2016

Christmas Gift Guide: for people who like Scandinavia

Oh Scandinavia, how you have such beautiful, enviable design. My dream home would be decked out in Hans Wegner and Arne Jacobsen chairs, Poul Henningsen lighting and beautiful teak sideboards but alas I am unfortunately not a millionaire. I get my Scandi fix in other ways, from books about Danish design to annual holidays to the Nordic lands to Ikea trips for meatballs and cheap furnishings, where there's a will there's a way.

So in keeping with my previous gift guides on initials, burgers, travel and music here my latest instalment of gift ideas for the Scandiphile in your life.

scandi gift guide

Let's start with everyone's favourite Swedish shop, Ikea. It might be full of huge quantities of cheap, crappy furniture but you can't deny that Ikea has its fair share of gems as well. I absolutely adore this armchair as it's quite Finn Juhl / Hans Wegner inspired. The rocking chair is another great mid-century modern inspired piece. Both these pieces are high on my list for when I live somewhere with a bit more space and with both costing £150 they're an excellent way to bring Danish design into your home on a budget. The stool may look like a boring £8 piece of plywood but if you take a closer look you'll see that it's an extremely good dupe for the Artek stool by Alvar Aalto. If you know someone into design they will definitely appreciate it, next time I head to Ikea I'm picking up one for myself.

For other design orientated pieces I love the Karlsson Big Flip clock, but if your budget doesn't stretch that far try this cheaper version. I love the Finnish brand marimekko for its cool prints, so why not pick up some great looking crockery. And talking of Finland, how could I not include something Moomin related, this mug is just adorable. The Danish brand Hay creates a whole host of gorgeous furniture and stationary, it's not budget but it certainly looks beautiful. I love the multicoloured stacking plates as they make a standout coffee table feature. They come in lots of different colours and sizes which allow you to play around until you find your perfect assortment. Speaking of stationary I absolutely had to include these gorgeous desk essentials from Swedish brand kikki.K. I love the fun, cutesy designs the brand creates but it's their larger pieces that really strike me as beautiful. I'd love an entire collection of perspex and gold stationary.

On to the books. There are so many books about the hygge doing the rounds at the moment that in a bit of a scandi-fulled daze I ended up buying quite a few. I blame my trip to Denmark next year. The Little Book of Hygge is definitely one of my favourites due to all the tips for the home mentioned as well as a generously sized cooking section. It's also one of the cheaper titles so double win. Trine Hahnemann is Denmark's answer to Delia Smith so it would be rude not to mention her lovely cookery books. Scandinavian Baking: Loving Baking at Home and Scandinavian Comfort Food: Embracing the Art of Hygge are lovely books. Of course I had to chose some sort of travel guide and I knew instantly I wanted to include Wild Guide Scandinavia which is full of gorgeous photography and travel tips. It's not your typical travel guide but it gives you a good insight on what each of the Nordic countries has to offer. 

If you're a fan of the Nordic noir genre I'm sure you'll recognise this jumper, worn by Sarah Lund in The Killing. The Faroese woollen jumper fetch a pretty penny online but if you're able to track a reasonably priced one down then do let me know. I'm sure most fans of the television show would love to get their hands on one of these. When it comes to Scandinavian clothing, everyone's favourite shop is Swedish brand Monki. Affordable and fun clothing is Monki's mantra and I personally think they're doing a hugely important and amazing job with their Monikfesto at the minute and forging conversations around 'taboo' topics. I love the period pants, they're fun and make a point of saying periods aren't something women should be embarrassed to talk about. 

If you like skin care then it's definitely worth checking out some Scandinavian brands. I particularly like Sky Iceland for their oils and masks. The miniature kits are particularly great if you're new to the brand. The last thing on my list is music related. There are so many great musicians from the Nordic countries but if I had to recommend one it would be Sweden's indie-pop master Jens Lekman. His songs are a mixture of fun, romantic, twee and dancey. It's always a pleasure to see him live and his music invokes some lovely, good time vibes. 

Finally, if you want to bring a bit of Scandinavian Christmas charm to your home then you absolutely have to visit the Skandium Christmas shop. The decorations are quite expensive but they're gorgeous. The Marylebone shop is one of my favourite spots in London from a design point of view and whilst I can never really afford anything they sell it's nice to check out what's hot, Nordic style.

I hope that's given you a good idea for what to get that Scandiphile in your life and if you have any great suggestions that I've missed please leave them in a comment.

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