How to celebrate the shortest day of the year as the longest, Scandinavian style!
Midsummer nights’ dream the Finnish way
Bathing in the sauna and a refreshing dip in the sea are considered essential. But the real highlight is the flower hunt. The legend tells, that if you pick seven different flowers on midsummer night and place them under your pillow, the love of your life will appear in your dreams. Real daredevils carry out the process sky-clad (or butt naked) to amplify the spell.
Those blooming Swedes
Of all the Scandinavians, the Swedes may be the best known for their impeccable eye on aesthetics. Imagine kids in their freshly-made floral crowns or a wreath made of felt flowers, dancing around the blossoming maypoles (midsommarstång). Or the buffet tables overflowing with traditional dishes, beautifully set up with colourful decor.
And of course Schnapps: The good news is, midsummer is considered a perfectly good excuse to have one too many! Perhaps that’s because back in the day, loud behaviour was believed to bring a better harvest season?!
Fired up in Denmark
Midsummer bonfires are lit up all around Scandinavia during the night. The Danes, however, seem to be especially fond of them! They all gather round and sing songs such as Midsommervisen by Holger Drachmann, and listen to live bands, all whilst enjoying a couple of drinks with friends.
Floating on in Norway
In Norway they do their bonfires and beers, too. However, another popular midsummer pastime is boating on the fjords. Traditionally, water has even been considered to possess magical powers; dew improving vision, sacred springs having healing powers…
The Nordic Fusion Midsummer
Like with any good party, the first thing is to decide what to wear. A white dress or one with a floral print can never go wrong. And for non-dress-folk, a blue or white shirt is definitely the next best thing.
Food is obviously THE key element to a traditional Midsummer Celebration. Set up a smörgåsbord with salmon, meat- or fishballs and open sandwiches. Try pickled herring if you’re feeling courageous. If you’re feeling not so brave, perhaps have a schnapps and then reconsider the whole cured fish scenario! Go for akvavit or ice-cold vodka from the freezer. For non-alcoholic drinks try our elderflower or lingonberry cordials or one of our delicious ciders or mulled wine. A strawberry cake or just plain strawberries with ice cream is the authentic way to finish off the dinner.
Regardless of what you serve, that quintessential Scandinavian look needs some effort in the table setting department. Go for playful primary colours or choose more elegant natural tones spiced up with wild elements: stones, leaves, branches…
In case you’ve got a fire pit around, now is the time to gather friends around it and make a heart-warming fire. A good old backyard barbeque is not too far from a midsummer bonfire either. Check out our outdoor games such as Finska and Kubb, play tug of war or a sack race will also keep you warm. If you don’t fancy being energetic grab a cosy Klippan wool blanket to keep you nice and toasty. For those preferring to party indoors, a fireplace or lots and lots of tealight candles will be close enough.
But what really brings Aussie’s and Scandi’s together is celebrating our nature connection. Revitalise your senses and gather inspiration outdoors or create a nature-inspired look and feel at home. Or do both. Many of the design classics in the Nordic Fusion collection have been inspired by the colours and forms of the natural world. Spice them up by bringing in leafy wild branches to combine with whatever your florist has on offer.