Make your own Himmeli, the traditional Finnish holiday decorations from straw
What's a Himmeli then?
Himmeli is a traditional Finnish craft that involves using straw or other materials to create decorative hanging mobiles. The word “Himmeli” comes from the Finnish word “himmel” which means “sky” or “heaven.” The Himmeli tradition is thought to have originated in the countryside, where farmers would use straw to create decorations for their homes during the long, dark winters.
Himmeli are typically made using rye straw or wheat straw, although other materials such as brass or copper wire can also be used. The straw is cut into small pieces of varying lengths and then threaded onto twine or string to create geometric shapes, such as triangles, squares, and diamonds. These shapes are then arranged to form a hanging mobile that resembles a miniature version of the structures found in traditional Finnish architecture.
Himmeli are traditionally associated with the Christmas season in Finland, and are often used as decorations for the Christmas tree or as ornaments for other holiday decorations. However, Himmeli can also be used as decorations for other occasions, such as weddings or birthdays.
The making of Himmeli is a simple and enjoyable craft that can be enjoyed by people of all ages. It is a great way to bring a touch of Finnish culture and tradition into your home, and can also make for a unique and thoughtful gift for friends and loved ones.
Get started with a basic Himmeli
To make your own Himmeli, you will need the following materials:
- Straw, such as rye straw or wheat straw, or other thick grass stalks
- thread or string
- A needle (optional)
Here is a step-by-step tutorial on how to make your own Himmeli:
- Cut the straw into small pieces of varying lengths, ranging from about 2 inches to 6 inches. You can use scissors or a knife to do this.
- Take a piece of thread or string and tie one end to a stationary object, such as a doorknob or a hook.
- Begin threading the straw pieces onto the thread, starting at the end that is tied to the stationary object. You can use a needle to help thread the straw pieces onto the thread, if desired.
- As you thread the straw pieces onto the thread, arrange them in a geometric pattern, such as a triangle or a square. Make sure to leave enough space between the straw pieces so that they can move and sway freely.
5. Continue threading and arranging the straw pieces until you have created the desired shape and size for your Himmeli.
6. Once you have finished arranging the straw pieces, tie the other end of the thread to a second stationary object, such as a second doorknob or hook. This will help to secure your Himmeli in place.
7. Hang your Himmeli in a prominent place where it can be enjoyed, such as above a dining table or in a window.
And that’s it! With just a few simple steps, you can create your own beautiful and traditional Finnish Himmeli decoration. Happy crafting!
Step by Step Video Tutorial
Follow in the steps of Eveliina, our very own Finnish product designer, to learn to make your basic Himmeli
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