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Hygge Christmas | Danish winter crafts and natural table decorations

Christmas always reminds me of my childhood. These thoughts are even closer to my heart as I watch my son get excited and ready for Santa’s visit.

My thoughts of Christmases past are filled with memories of favorite toys as well as the crafts I helped my mom make to decorate our house. In fact, it’s the garlands, gift tags, and setting the table with our holiday best that truly help me get in the holiday spirit.

And it’s a great opportunity to make natural Christmas decorations using dried flowers, branches and even fallen leaves. Even dried hydrangea heads look beautiful this time of year.

There is something about making things by hand that completely embodies Christmas, and this year will be no different! It’s going to be so hyggeligt.

Hygge is one of my favorite words in Danish, and it’s very important in our culture. It’s a difficult word to actually define as it can be a verb, noun, and an adjective.

The closest English translation would be cozy. Think of it as the ultimate feeling of warmth, joy, and comfort all rolled up in one word.

The thing about hygge is that you can enjoy it in every season. Hygge is a feeling and you can have that feeling despite the outside temperature. All you need is to surround yourself with the people and things that you love and enjoy and you’ve got hygge!

I want to show you how to bring Danish hygge into your Christmas decorations this year — using natural materials and things already found in your garden.

We’ll make crafts that are very typical of Danish hygge in the winter and ones that will look great in your home no matter where in the world you are.

Setting the holiday table for Hygge

I love nature. In case you didn’t figure that out already. And I find it to be so hygge to use natural elements when setting a table.

The textures and colors are so beautiful to look at and touch, and it makes my table feel warm and inviting. Warm and inviting are the exact words I’m going for when I set a table with winter hygge in mind.

This table is set with a range of natural elements. We’re going to take ready made wreaths of vine and bark and mix them with painted leaves, fresh flowers, and seasonal greenery. I’ll add a few Danish traditional elements like Nordic Stars and Woven Hearts for more texture and layers.

The lovely branch hanging overhead will give our table just the right amount of coziness and soft light, and it will be a great way to hang hearts and let my guests feel loved.

This table is all about feeling warm, welcomed, and hygge!

Tips for your Winter Hygge table

  • Setting a table for hygge is all about layering. Layer the elements of your centerpiece and continue that layering outward. I kept it going by adding candles and dishes on top of golden chargers.

  • Mix and match your plates. It is important to choose a color scheme, but it is also fun to give a more relaxed feeling by mixing plates. I chose matching chargers and dinner plates and used different top plates. This gives a cozy (hygge!) feeling and will make your guests feel at home.

  • Candles are important in setting for hygge. Their soft light and warm glow is typical of the hygge lifestyle.

  • Napkins should be in a soft color. I chose a natural cotton napkin as the color is softer than white and fits well with the nature theme.

How to set a Christmas table to create hygge

Hygge and nature go hand in hand. The centerpiece that you create will help everyone celebrate the winter season by bringing the warmth and texture of the outside right to our dining table.

You can make this arrangement as large or as small as you need and use flowers that are local and seasonal to your area. The best part is that it does not have to be perfect. Nature is filled with a wonderful mix of colors, shapes, size, and texture and so is this centerpiece.

What You'll Need

  • Ready made wreaths (natural materials)

  • Leaves painted gold

  • Seasonal greenery

  • Seasonal flowers

  • Woven Hearts

  • Nordic Stars

  • Candles


  1. Place the wreaths on the table and arrange them to give a bit of height. Do not stack them on top of each other as that looks a bit forced.

  2. Place the gold leaves under the wreaths in an outward position. Think of extending the centerpiece to the heads of the table.

  3. Fill in gaps in the wreaths with greenery. I used eucalyptus for the smell, but any green will do.

  4. Begin to add color and the flowers. I used Protea flowers and cuttings from bushes that are native to the mountains near my home. Choose one flower and stick to that - too many colors can make the table distracting.

  5. Layer candles into the design. Use both tall and short ones. Add Woven Hearts and Nordic Stars for interest.

  6. You do not have to be a professional florist to make a nice arrangement. It only takes time and patience. Take your time and be ready to make changes. Using greenery that doesn't need water (as I did) is a great way to give yourself more time to make "mistakes".

Table Decorations: Natural Napkin Rings

Nature is a huge part of hygge for Danes and for me personally. I love bringing the textures of the outside to my designs and these napkin rings let me do just that. They complement the hanging branch perfectly and continue the idea of a lovely night in nature right down to your fingertips.

What You'll Need

  • Hemp rope

  • Scissors

  • 4-5 small twigs (per napkin ring)

  • Napkin


  1. Tie a knot around the first twig. Be sure to leave enough rope to make a bow around the napkin.

  2. Hold all of the twigs in your hand as you carefully weave the rope through each one. Make it tight.

  3. Continue weaving until you have around 2 cm (0.8”) of weaving.

  4. Tie a knot at the end of the string and then place upside down on the table. Lay the napkin on top and tie a bow in the back. Cut off the excess rope.

Table Decorations: Woven Hearts

These woven hearts are so iconic to winter hygge and can even be traced back to Hans Christian Andersen. I love their soft texture as it reminds me of a warm blanket on the cold winter nights. These are traditionally hung on door knobs throughout the house in Denmark during winter and from a suspended branch in the living room. We’re taking that idea and including them in a hygge way by hanging them over the table. It’s the perfect way to give your guests the feeling of hygge and literally share your heart.

What You'll Need

  • Grey and red felt

  • Scissors

  • Ruler

  • Pencil

  • Cup or bottle

  • Glue stick

  • Template - Woven Heart


  1. Fold the red felt in half and trace a half circle at the open end of the folded felt.

  2. Use a ruler to draw straight lines down the sides of the half circle.

  3. Cut out this shape and then cut 4 slits almost to the top in the felt (alternatively, see Template 9).

  4. Fold the shape inside out to hide the pencil markings and repeat all of these steps for the gray piece.

  5. Start weaving each piece together one strip at a time. Each piece of felt makes one half of the heart.

  6. Keep the strips pushed to the top for neatness. Finish by gluing a thin strip to the open ends as a handle.

  7. These can be made in any size by simply changing the size of the half circle and distance in the straight lines.

I hope you have had as much fun making these crafts and setting the table as I have!

Winter is truly the perfect season for creating memories and special traditions through your crafts, and it's the perfect time of year to share these memories with others.

Be sure to take what you've learned in these crafts and give it your own special twist. Finding a way to give each craft your own personal touch is what will make them extra special for you and yours. Think of how you can bring your own style into every table setting you set and every cut you make.

Since this is the season of wonderful holidays, we want to wish you all a wonderful and happy season. It’s important to take time and think about the blessings in your life and find joy in the moments you have with family and friends. And create more fabulous memories for years to come!

We hope you have a very merry Christmas, a fantastic New Year, a beautiful Valentine’s, and all of the hygge you can handle this winter!


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Hi! I'm Lars (Denmark).

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