Architecture decor

Decorating 101: “Just do what you think is fun.” See more of this home —

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For Sweden-based Rebecca Sibner, Christmas is all about recreating the magical atmosphere she experienced as a child and passing that spirit on to her daughter, Lily. That means lots of family, food and fun, plus a decorating scheme with its roots in the natural world. From taking nature walks to forage for pine cones, moss and twigs to baking her family’s traditional fudge, here’s how this budding interior designer casts her holiday spell.

 


Image by: Cecilia Möller/Living4Media


Source: with files from Mariana Schroeder

The start of November sees homeowner Rebecca Sibner scouring the woods for nature walk finds like pine cones and fallen branches to craft into simple wreaths and swags for her home. “My husband, Andreas, claims we start too early – but I think he secretly likes it,” says Rebecca with a laugh.


Image by: Cecilia Möller/Living4Media


Source: with files from Mariana Schroeder

As a youngster, Rebecca spent Christmas holidays with her large family at her grandparents’ farm in rural Sweden. She wants to honour that natural country aesthetic and keep the traditions alive for her daughter, Lily.


Image by: Cecilia Möller/Living4Media


Source: with files from Mariana Schroeder

Rebecca’s family arrives en masse on December 23, ready to be entertained with great food and convivial company. The guests love to gather around the dining room table, where Christmas Eve breakfast has become one of the main meals, often lasting until noon. Rebecca anticipates her loved ones’ lingering by setting her rustic farmhouse table in a simple way, with natural greenery grounded by hits of black and white, and lit up by the sparkle of glassware and candlelight. It all sets a tone conducive to lively conversation filled with laughter and sentiment.


Image by: Cecilia Möller/Living4Media


Source: with files from Mariana Schroeder

“Red gnomes and brightly coloured ornaments are not my thing,” says Rebecca. “Fresh pine boughs and candles go a long way when it comes to my Christmas decor.” Case in point is this restrained vignette that consists of two small wreaths and one tiny candlelit ceramic house.


Image by: Cecilia Möller/Living4Media


Source: with files from Mariana Schroeder

“When my whole family arrives, it’s crowded, but it’s cozy – and we have so much fun together,” says Rebecca. She prepares by layering her comfy couch with throws and toss cushions for guests to lounge together in the living room and watch favourite holiday movies as the night falls.


Image by: Cecilia Möller/Living4Media


Source: with files from Mariana Schroeder

There’s a tree for everyone in Rebecca’s house at Christmas: One, unadorned, has pride of place in the kitchen; another, in the living room, is delicately decorated in silver, white and pastel shades; and the one in Lily’s room is lavished with handmade snowballs, ballerinas and ornaments the young girl crafted at school.


Image by: Cecilia Möller/Living4Media


Source: with files from Mariana Schroeder

The natural decorations Rebecca uses in her home are chosen in part for their longevity. Handcrafted stars, natural greenery, winter bulbs and festive candle holders stay in place into the new year, long after the presents and party paraphernalia are put away.


Image by: Cecilia Möller/Living4Media


Source: with files from Mariana Schroeder

“We fill the house with the fragrances of Christmas,” says Rebecca. Beyond the scented candles and the smell of fresh greenery, the aroma of holiday baking is in the air nearly every day, be it from saffron cake, sweet buns, fudge from a treasured family recipe or traditional gingerbread.


Image by: Cecilia Möller/Living4Media


Source: with files from Mariana Schroeder

Rebecca’s design preferences are typical of Scandi interiors – pared-down decorating with a touch of whimsy and a nod to the past. She loves to dress the rooms of her century home with quirky seasonal vignettes such as the one here. “Just do what you think is fun,” she advises.


Image by: Cecilia Möller/Living4Media


Source: with files from Mariana Schroeder

Rebecca’s reliance on the pure beauty of nature when decorating for the holidays is evident in the unadorned tree that graces her kitchen. “It has to be a beautiful tree – and that’s enough.” A few gifts wrapped in kraft paper and some candles on the console add a touch of rustic appeal to the scene.


Image by: Cecilia Möller/Living4Media


Source: with files from Mariana Schroeder

As a budding interior designer, Rebecca loves to experiment with artful displays, but when it comes to the tablescape, she keeps it simple. “I prefer the green of nature mixed with white,” she says. The look perfectly complements the rest of her farmhouse holiday style.

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