Escaping into Nature

 
Our favourite Escape stories


A hike along a childhood trail, filled with remembrance of life’s journeys; a winding path deep into the forest to rest in a remote clearing; a corner of the land, tended carefully to nurture nature’s crown jewels. We all have that special place, set aside from our everyday lifes, where we reenergize and take ourselves back to old comforting memories that are replayed in our minds. Last month, we hosted a giveaway on Instagram, asking our followers to tell us where they would like to escape into nature and why. We found some inspiring stories which we would like to share with you.

 

“I like to escape to my father’s vineyard and garden of peonies and roses. It’s relaxing when you are so close to nature and can enjoy the beautiful colours and scents.” 
Story by @ogledalo_online.

 

 
 

“As a typical swiss girl, I grew up by the lake, and every morning the view from my bedroom would reflect the lake and the mountains in the far. When I wanted to escape, it was either one of these two places I would go to. Walking down to the lake and enjoying the peacefulness or walking up on the mountains to enjoy the view from up above. There’s nothing quite like it.”
Story by @aaanouk279.

 

 

“I would love to escape to our summer cottage in Finland. A place we go to every 2 years. A place where I feel at home. It’s in the middle of nowhere surrounded by forest and just a 5 minute walk to the sea. On your way to the sea you can pick berries for breakfast or just eat them on the spot. Every time we’re there it feels like you can breathe again, the air is so clean. There, I would love to go to the sauna and then jump into the cold water. Or just chill with a korvapuusti (cinnamonbun) and a cup of coffee whilst looking over the meadow. A place where you can just be yourself. I just love being there, and I always feel sad to leave.”
Story by @marinoble.

 

 


Our own escapes stories bring to life the Scandinavian passion for escaping into nature, where whistles of the wind whisper new inspiration, and a primal connection with the land is regained. We find ourselves longing for Heia (the Norwegian heathland), Lysning (the Scandinavian forest glade) and Rosenhave (the Danish rose garden), which are translated into 3 subtle fragrances for the home and body in our Escapes Collection. See our Escape Collection here.

 

Photograph by Nikki Brantmark (@myscandinavianhome).

 

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Q&A WITH MARIA LAITINEN

 
A Scandinavian Design Advocate in Australia


Maria is born and raised in Lapland, Finland, but is residing in sunny Sydney, Australia since 2005. She is passionate about Scandinavian design and is a certified Health Coach, who has been featured in several Design and Health Magazines. We have interviewed her to get to know her personal relationship with the Nordic region and design.

What are the most significant differences between Finland and Australia?

Number 1 thing that comes to mind is definitely the climate! I come from the Northern part of Finland that has very clear seasons, but here in Sydney the seasons are more blurred. Winter here can sometimes be warmer than summer in my hometown! There are cultural differences as well, of course, and I think the climate plays a part in this too. 

Can you highlight your favourite qualities with Scandinavian design?

A strong history with craftsmanship resulting in finely tuned, high quality pieces must be my favourite thing about Scandinavian design. What can actually look quite understated on the surface is often the most complex piece of design.

 


“A strong history with craftsmanship
resulting in finely tuned,
high quality
pieces must be my favourite thing
about Scandinavian design.”

 

 

In your opinion, are there any Scandinavian trends emerging to Australia?

The “Scandi look” has been a strong interior trend in Australia for years. However, in my opinion it has been a somewhat “stereotypical” view to what is actually a lot more defined and complex. Unfortunately, Australia also has a reputation for its widespread replica industry and a lot of the iconic designs (Scandinavian and otherwise) have been copied. I would love to see the authentic Scandinavian designs gain more ground here, but it will take a while for people to change their views and consumption habits.

Is there anything from Finland you miss?

There is a lot! The longer I live abroad (13 years and counting), the more nostalgic Finland becomes. I miss the forests, the seasons, the sauna, even winter and definitely the snow!

What are your most favourite places to visit when you go back to Finland and the Scandinavian region?

I tend to go straight up to the Arctic Circle where my hometown is and in recent years I haven’t done much travelling around the rest of Scandinavia. I love the northern parts of Finland, Sweden and Norway – the landscapes are beautiful, and it is so serene up there.


Photographs by Maria Laitinen.


Thank you, Maria, for answering our questions. We are sure your advocacy in Australia brings forth the Scandinavian authenticity, and we hope you will soon get to experience the Finnish snow once again. You can learn more about Maria and her inspiring blog at TheScandiHome.com, or follow her on Instagram, @ScandiHome.

 

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A small candle can light up the darkest forest

 

A small candle can light up the darkest forest

Finnish Proverb


The nights draw in sharply here, and October marks the month where those long days of summer are but a distant memory. Though the leaves may cling weakly on their branches for a few weeks more, it’s the return of darkness that drastically changes the habits of its citizens.

Lights reappear on bicycles and gloves reappear on tiny hands, bleary trips to school are made before the sun rises, and when the night comes, so complete and inescapable, one finds oneself fighting constant tiredness and the overwhelming urge to just nod off straight after dinner.

This is the time of year where the body needs time to recalibrate itself to the dark days ahead. When it finally does, winter is embraced as enthusiastically as any other season, the October hors d’oeuvre to months of magic.

It’s the cycle of nature, the irresistible appeal of hibernation, and the treasures it brings.

 

Photographs by Mina Fagerlund

 

 


 

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HAPPY KANELBULLENS DAG

 

Trevlig Kanelbullens dag! 

Like many places around the world, Scandinavia values the traditions of centering shared moments with friends and families around food. In Sweden, they cherish one of these shared moments on October 4th, the national Kanelbullens Dag, in English called, Cinnamon Bun Day.

The tradition was initiated in 1999 by Kaeth Gardestedt, who was the project manager for the Home Affairs Council, to bring forth the tradition of home baking. Every October 4th, no one can avoid a bun. At work, in school, in subway, at all cafes and restaurants, you will be offered cinnamon buns.

Ingredients:
– 14 dl of flour
– 1 teaspoon of baking soda
– 1 dl of powdered sugar
– 1 teaspoon of salt
– 2 teaspoons of cardamom
– 200 grams of heated butter
– 50 grams of yeast for sweet dough
– 4 dl of cold or lukewarm milk
– 1 egg

Filling:
– 75 grams of softened butter
– 2 teaspoons of vanilla sugar
– 3 teaspoons of cinnamon
– 3 teaspoons of raw sugar

Topping:
– Brush the bun with 1 egg
– Top off with pearl sugar

 

How to:
1. Mix milk, baking soda, sugar, salt and cardamom.
Pour the softened butter and yeast in the milk blend.

2. Stir the egg in the milk and pour it all into the flour. Whip (preferably with a machine) for about 10 minutes.

3. Let it rest for an hour under a piece of cloth.

4. Turn the oven to 240 degrees.

5. Pour the dough out on a lightly floured surface. Roll it out to a 40x60cm square plate. Spread the filling on top.

6. Roll the dough like a roll and cut it in slices, approximately 3 cm thick.

7. Brush with egg, drizzle the pearl sugar on and bake the buns for 8 minutes.

Good luck with the home baking! We wish you all a happy Kanelbullens dag!

 

 

 

 

 


 

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SKANDINAVISK POP-UP STORE

 

Opening our Skandinavisk Pop-Up Store in Magasin 

We are delighted to announce that Magasin Du Nord in Copenhagen is the host of our latest Pop-Up Store. This iconic department store, facing the spectacular Kongens Nytorv and the Nyhavn canal, opened in 1870 and has been the city’s most popular shopping destination ever since.

Located just inside the Kongens Nytorv entrance, our Pop-Up will present our winter collection within the theme of the Scandinavian boreal forest. Discover our new Vase Diffusers, SKOG Hand Care collection and our Seasonal Candles, which are now joined by new fragrance, TRÆ (tree), as well as all our original fragrance stories of Scandinavia.

 

We look forward to welcoming you to our world from
Monday October 1st to Sunday October 7th.

Vi ses!

 

 

Come by and sign up for our newsletter at the pop-up store,
for a chance to win our SKOG Hand & Body collection.

See Facebook event here.

 

 

 


 

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ON FINDING PEACE OF MIND

 

FRIDA EDLUND . PHOTOGRAPHER

I was never into horses as a young girl. I saw no charm in riding schools, and I just did not get it when the other girls were fighting like crazy over their favourite pony. But when I moved to Ölsdalen as an adult, my uncle would pass by my house every morning on horseback, with no saddle. After a few weeks, my curiosity finally got the better of me, and I asked if I could join him. At first, I was terrified. Clearly, the horse did not approve of me on his back. If I felt tense, he would feel the same; if I was distracted, he would just stop and refuse to move. Friendship seemed unlikely to happen, but something inside me wanted to keep trying. And then one day we found that special flow. My first gallop was one of the happiest moments ever; it was like our hearts were beating as one. I had never felt so alive.

 




 

Before I moved here, my whole life was in Stockholm, and – like horse riding – living in an old schoolhouse in Ölsdalen, literally in the middle of nowhere, was not part of my plan. 
I was working as a fashion photographer and, as part of the job, I was travelling a lot. After a particularly intense period of work, I returned to my apartment from a trip to New York, and something had suddenly changed.
When I was in my mid-twenties, Inside me there was this void. I had no energy to keep going; I simply saw no point. What used to fill me with great joy and give professional fulfillment and a desire to constantly develop creatively had been drowned in a massive overload of work, and pressure, and expectations, and self-criticism, and I had completely ignored all the signs of my own emotional crisis in the process.

 

 

 


 

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ON LONGING FOR THE FJORD

 

METTE MORTENSEN . FOOD STYLIST

I grew up in a small community, just outside Oslo. At the end of the road from my parent’s house was the fjord and, one way or another, my most intense childhood memories are all about the sea. We were a small gang of friends from the neighbourhood who would go sailing together whenever we had the chance. Mid-water, we would tie our small motor boats together and, while drifting, we would hang out just like city kids on a street corner. All summer, the boys would try to impress us, racing by in their boats or diving from the tallest rocks, doing all sorts of crazy acrobatic tricks in the water. And we would be sitting on the dock by the boat houses, with freckled cheeks, dressed in shorts and nylon swimming suits, laughing and gossiping all day long.

 




 

In the winter, the fjord would freeze over, and we would break every rule, and cross the ice on foot to get to a nearby island without our parents knowing about it. The sea was our playground and, although I had immense respect for the power of nature, I do not remember ever being scared of the water. On the contrary, growing up so close to the fjord, and the wooded mountains above it, filled me with a sense of security, and I took to the water without fear or hesitation.
When I was in my mid-twenties, I left Oslo for London to study communications at Goldsmiths and, after my degree, I got a job as a runner in a film production company, and later I worked for a lifestyle magazine. However, as much as my hunger for adventure had drawn me to life in the big city, I never really felt at home. There was always this frustrating ambivalence.

 

 

 


 

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ON THE TRANQUILITY OF ISLAND LIFE

MARIE MONRAD GRAUNBØL . EDITOR AND STYLIST

Each time I reach the ferry berth, I get an immediate sense of tranquility; I breathe more freely, and my mind seems clearer. Blame it on the light that in early spring will cast a supernatural, pink haze over the treetops on the other side of the narrow stretch of water separating the island from the mainland. Or the fact that most often I greet this stunning scenery on a late Friday afternoon, exhausted from a week’s work and longing for a welcome respite from the turbulence of the city. Life slows down at Orø, magically starting with the mere expectation of it while waiting for the ferry to arrive to bring us to our weekend cottage.

 

 

It has not always been like that. When my husband and I bought the cottage, it was the run-down holiday retreat of an elderly couple who had never bothered to tend to the garden or mend the roof. The very foundations of the house were rotting away, and the first couple of summer vacations were spent en route between what was supposed to be our very own paradise on Earth and the local builder’s merchant on the mainland. We had to replace everything inside the tiny A-shaped structure of the building, and, though I hated every minute of our endless arguments about the maintenance of the gutters or how we would get the water pump to work, I know now that it has tied us closer to the place. Gradually, we made the house and the surrounding garden our own. We came to know all the little signs of the changing seasons, the loud, terrifying noises of the pines swaying dangerously in the storm, and the true bliss of entering the house to the warmth of the wood-burning stove mingling with the smell of newly brewed coffee.

 

 

 


 

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