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I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with Christmas, and while my sentiments flip back and forth, one thing I always love is the Scandinavian way of decorating for the holidays. True to Nordic design in general, it’s pared back with an emphasis on natural, textural elements like light wood furniture, felted wool, skin rugs and birch branches. And I love how the Swedes hang white Christmas lights and stars early in the season and leave them up for longer than we do because the hours of daylight are so scarce. Today is Christmas Eve, so I’m sure you’ve decorated as much as you’re going to. Since it will be a whole year until — being reasonable adults — we can get excited about plunking a fresh tree in the middle of the room, here are some last-minute inspiration photos to keep the romance of the season going.

Speaking of a tree in the middle of the room, not many kitchens can pull this off with style. The white painted wood floors, beadboard walls and country charm of this Swedish space are a perfect backdrop for fresh greenery and a tree minimally decorated with lit candles. (Look for the battery operated Everlasting candles if you ever plan to do this.)

A wreath hung in the window from fat white ribbon and a pile of black and white wrapped gifts are subtle, sophisticated hints of the season.

These would have been perfect in last week’s post on Christmas tree alternatives. Large hurricane jars filled with pine cones, glass balls and branches make a great holiday display. And I love the pine cones displayed as ornaments — both from Danish designer Tine K. Although for me it’s the chippy blue wood door that makes the ornaments.

This pretty, Gustavian take on Christmas from Martha Stewart is not quite gritty enough to suit my tastes, but it’s in honour of Michael Penney, who along with Joel Bray, I already miss sitting beside.

Happy holidays to everyone and best wishes for the new year!

For more Scandinavian-inspired decor, read my Decorating With Wood Logs blog post.

Photo credits:
1. Walther & Co.
2. Min Lilla Veranda, from Willow Decor blog
3. Skona Hem, from Live.Like.You blog
4. Tine K., from Stockholm Vitt blog
5. Martha Stewart

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