Urgh, tinsel. Be gone! If you’re thinking of having a tinsel-fest Christmas as an ‘ironic statement’ on ‘the fickleness of trends’ or as a ‘retro statement’ inspired by the fact we’ve all forgotten to have fun, I invite you to become my Christmas tree topper with immediate effect.
Instead, this year’s Yule decor for bona fide Frillseekers is all about the touchy-feelies: textured, tasteful in colour, strokeable, made of natural materials and ever-so-slightly Scandi in bent. DECK those halls.
On Christmas Eve, the Scandinavians - whom you’ll agree, always win at doing Christmas - put out a bowl of hot porridge on the doorsteps for the Christmas Gnomes to enjoy, to keep them friendly in the year to come. These mini versions are designed by Åsa Götander with wool from free roaming sheep found on the Swedish island of Gotland. The wool is even turned into beards and hair. Aaaaw! They start at €25.50 for the small ones at Inreda.ie.
Extreme knitter Donna Wilson is my hero. There, I said it. This Frank knitted pouffe is a bit of a classic from her range and although not a Christmas piece, it really comes into its own at this time of year with its lovely folksy wool pattern. It’s a bit of a stretch at €534 from scp.co.uk but you’ll love it forever.
Carolyn Donnelly of Dunnes has loads of lovely pieces in her Eclectic range for Christmas this year, including this chap: a papier-mâché reindeer, €20. I’d keep him around all winter. Beautiful folk-printed reindeer are not just for Christmas, folks.
How nice an idea is this? It’s a felted wool Christmas tree rug – yep, you simply put it under your Christmas tree and then pile your pressies on top of it. Added advantage: should collect pine needles rather nicely. Good luck hoovering them out of it though. €117 by Danish sister-run firm En Gry & Sif (a brand you need to know about, STAT) and is available online from sistersguild.com
Another one of Fiona Snow’s lovely laser cut Christmas range: the first lines from the iconic poem ‘Twas the night before Christmas’ in wall-hanging format. €32, Snoweventdesign.com.
Fiona Snow is a lassie after my own heart. She’s Irish and she has a lovely fresh take on the Christmas decoration. This year her range includes all sorts of beautiful laser-cut wood goodies, including this little set of wintry creatures. A full set of them is €40 but you can buy them individually from €3 and I reckon they’d make a nice alternative crib for the non-religious. Snoweventdesign.com.
Made in similar Scandi style to the aforementioned Christmas gnomes, this felt Santa tree topper was made by Gisela Graham and is available at The Contemporary Home, tch.net. By the way, once you get started browsing the amazing goodies at TCH, you will likely still be there by next Christmas. Just a friendly warning.
Paper stag’s head, deconstructed, put back together again – by you. Flatpack stag! Nice job, M&S. This guy’s €27, marksandspencer.ie.
Felted balls of multicoloured wool made into a wreath. My front door says YES! €40 at Paperchase, which has a concession at Arnotts.