Scandinavian Design, Houseover Style

Scandinavian design is having a moment – you can check out some of the top blogs here. I like to mix up decorating styles and since The Houseover, I’ve become much freer in my decorating style. One of my goals is to insert personal touches into our home.

Enter my own little Scandinavian design touch: the window Nisse.

NisseI know, our family’s new addition doesn’t look much like the sleek, pared-down design of IKEA, does he? Well people, I am here to tell you that Scandinavian design is more multi-faceted than you might imagine.

Do not be deceived by the whimsical appearance of our Nisse. He is one big, bad dude who will mess with you if you mess with our house. The little guy’s dark side means that if our family doesn’t treat him with kindness (and, according to some, provide a bowl of rice porridge on Christmas Eve), he will get up to mischief. Who pulled the blankets off your bed at night? Caused your canine to bark irrationally and furiously at an invisible intruder? Your naughty Nisse, that’s who.

Our Nisse is personal because my mom’s heritage is 100% Scandinavian, and I graduated from the most Norwegian-American college around: Luther College in Decorah, Iowa, which is where our new Nisse hails from. (You can buy one of your own by calling Dragonfly Books, here. Tell them you want to buy a Hoeg Nisse. They are $44.95). ¬†Here’s a photo of downtown Decorah. It’s ridiculously picturesque.








Decorah has waterfalls, and ice caves, and springs, and eagle’s nests. In college, we used to have parties where we would put kegs in a cold spring inside a cave on a farmer’s property, and we’d line the inside of the cave with candles. This isn’t the same cave, but it’s a similar cave, also in Decorah. Can’t you just imagine Nisser (plural of nisse for those of you not up on your Norwegian) frolicking here at night?













After the Houseover, I was forced to let go of my perfectionist tendencies. Life is not perfect, and when you do an embarrassingly public belly flop off the high dive of life, if you have a Nisse in your window, well, at least you can blame your mischief- and mishap-causing Nisse, and have a little chuckle at yourself.



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