The Nordic Fusion Midsummer Guide
Author: Hanna Lofgren Date Posted:10 June 2021
How to celebrate the shortest day of the year as the longest
Winter is here in Australia. In Scandinavia, however, the June solstice marks the start of the long-awaited summer and that calls for some serious celebrations. So, why not bring some fun into your midwinter by replicating Scandinavian midsummer? Here’s our pick ’n’ mix of the best of the best festive traditions from the North.
Photo Credit: The Local.se
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, dancing around the blossoming maypoles (midsommarstång). Or the buffet tables overflowing with traditional dishes, beautifully set up with colourful decor.
And 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, but the real local speciality is to throw handcrafted witch figurines in the flames. And presto, the evil spirits are away for the year to come!
Floating on in Norway
In Norway they do their bonfires and beers, too. 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 would probably be your safest bet.
Food is obviously THE key element. Set up a smörgåsbord with salmon, meat- or fishballs and open sandwiches, baltic herring if you’re feeling courageous. If not so much, perhaps have a schnapps first and then reconsider the whole cured fish scenario. Go for akvavit or ice cold vodka from the freezer. To give it some personal touch, try infusing it with herbs or spices, like fennel, cardamom, anise, caraway or coriander or a flavoured cordial like elderflower or lingonberry. And a strawberry cake or just plain strawberries with ice cream will be an authentic way to finish off the dinner.
Photo Credit: Luxurious Magazine
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. Outdoor games such as Finska, tug of war or a potato sack race will also keep you warm, or just rugging up with a cozy wool blanket. For those preferring to party indoors, a fireplace or lots and lots of candles will be close enough.
But what really brings Aussie’s and Scandi’s together is celebrating our nature connection. So 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. If looking for that significant other, maybe skip Tinder for the night and try the pillow trick with the flowers. If not, why not place your arrangement in one of our lovely vases!