Have a Nordic Holiday: 16 Gift Ideas for Scandi-Loving Friends

Food52 candlesticks
credit: Food52

Check out the full Hunker Holiday Gift Guide for more ideas and inspo. Whether you're shopping for midcentury modern lovers, ceramic fiends, self-proclaimed foodies, or budding astrologers, we can help.

We all have that friend on our gift-shopping list whose home looks like it came from a chic Swedish design blog. Buying gifts for someone who rattles off the names of Copenhagen-based design firms and under-the-radar Stockholm designers can feel intimidating, to say the least — but that's where we come in.

We've rounded up a list of Scandinavian and Scandinavian-inspired gifts that are sure to surprise and delight your Nordic-AF BFF ... if you can bring yourself to give them away, that is. (Better be on the safe side and buy two of everything.)

Schoolhouse Velvet Lumbar Pillow
credit: Schoolhouse

Blame it on all those Swedish saffron buns we tend to gobble down at this time of the year, but this color always says Scandi-cool to us. And what's cozier than corduroy and velvet creating a luxe textural pairing and casting a cozy golden glow on your giftee's space? We can't think of much.

Quick Swedish lesson: "Fika" is the treasured coffee and cake break that lets everyone slow down a bit during the day. Treat your Scandi-loving friend to a coffee break of her own with these beautiful handmade brass coffee scoops by jewelry designer Deanna deVries.

East Fork Mug Set
credit: East Fork

Another Fika fixer: East Fork's sturdy, artful ceramics are another Insta-worthy upgrade to anyone's AM coffee. And paired with a bag of beans from beloved roasters Counter Culture Coffee, it makes an instantly appealing gift for sippers and savorers of all stripes.

Shopping for the modern minimalist on your list? Look no further than Buster + Punch's subtly industrial, ultra-understated candelabra in matte black. We can just picture it in a sparse Stockholm flat with white walls and bleached floors.

Any Swedish design lover worth her salt already has a Dala Horse (a traditional Swedish wooden horse handicraft) or two at home, but we like Jonathan Adler's quirky ceramic interpretation to mix it up a bit.

Skandinavisk Hygge Candle
credit: Lou & Grey

Give the gift of hygge with this transportive candle from Skandinavisk. Its fresh, clean scent evokes tea and cake with a hint of mint — a far cry from the heavily spiced candles others will be burning at this time of year — and instantly brightens any space, even when the sun is setting at 4 pm.

Morris and Essex Woodlands Enamel Mug
credit: Etsy

Woodland creatures in a folk-art pattern bring just the right amount of playfulness to these mugs, which are equally suited to outdoorsy types as homebodies thanks to their durable enamel camp-style construction.

Claylicious Ceramic Serving Bowls
credit: Etsy

Pile these cute ceramic serving bowls high with homemade cookies for an even more thoughtful gift. The irresistible animal design feels ultra-Nordic and will blend with any decor in this stark black and white color palette.

The Noma Guide to Fermentation
credit: Terrain

Sure, you can't gift your BFF a trip to Copenhagen and a meal at world-renowned restaurant Noma, but you can do the next best thing — give her the tools to create a two-Michelin-star-worthy meal at home. This beautiful tome will look great in her kitchen, too.

Ferm Living Candle Holder
credit: Batten Home

You can never have enough candle holders when you're trying to create a glowy Scandinavian holiday home, right? This understated round style is reminiscent of the wreaths used to celebrate St. Lucia's Day in Sweden.

Matte black comes through with the minimal Scandinavian vibes yet again. This sleek serving set by designer Miguel Peixoto was inspired by Nordic styling and makes a handsome gift.

Farmhouse Pottery Ceramic Forest
credit: Food52

For your design-minded friend who's all about creating a stark white winter wonderland in their modern-minimalist abode, these sculptural ceramic trees are about as perfect as you can get. Assembling a forest worth can be pricey, though, so gift a small assortment they can add to over time — a gift and a new tradition, all in one.

Terrain Concordville Zinc Village
credit: Terrain

Another gift that will become a treasured tradition over time, Terrain's tiny zinc village is an infinitely more sophisticated (and Scandi-inspired) take on the Christmas villages you may remember from your youth. Start the family off with a few tiny houses and let the magic grow as they add to their collection every year.

Human Home Hall Bookend
credit: Human Home

Scandinavian decor is all about light when it comes to the winter months. These glowy globes are finished with a bit of brass to amplify the light even more, and they'll perfectly light up a bookshelf for the next time your giftee wants to snuggle up with a good read.

Scandinavian Gift Guide
credit: Food52

Again, candles are key. Dress up their dining area just in time for holiday entertaining with these sculptural pieces by danish brand Menu — we love the mix of different finishes and sizes.

TOAST Shearling Sheepskin Slippers
credit: TOAST

Finally, it's just not a Scandinavian winter without something cozy to wrap up in at home. These soft shearling slippers are hygge incarnate.


Emily Bihl

Emily Bihl

Emily Bihl is a freelance writer and sometimes-songwriter who can invariably be found rearranging furniture in a domicile somewhere along the Mississippi River. She lives with her black labrador Selkie and a small army of homemade ceramics, and has not willingly closed a browser tab since 2011.