Christmas Traditions

Christmas Decorations

In the advent of Christmas all types of Christmas ornaments and lights are seen everywhere. People decorate their homes and put colourful garlands of lights in their windows. Amply decorated shop windows fill up with Christmas merchandise and there are lights everywhere. 

The most noticeable feature of the decorations are the beautiful garlands of lights that can be seen all over. This is partly because Christmas is celebrated during the darkest time of the year in Iceland and it is very important for the national psyche to get a little extra light into life at this time of the year. 

In almost every window, both in private homes and places of work multicoloured garlands of lights and Advent light can be seen. Most people also have Advent wreaths with four candles which are lit, one by one during the last four Sundays before Christmas. Not to be forgotten are the Christmas trees which most people choose to decorate their homes with when Christmas draws near. Some people use live evergreens while others make do with artificial trees but what the trees all have in common is that they are amply decorated with both lights and ornaments. Christmas trees are, however, not only to be seen in people´s homes. Most schools and workplaces also put up decorated Christmas trees and this is not to mention all the trees that are set up outdoors. It may sound strange to people nowadays, who do not know Christmas without all the lights and decorations, that it was not so very long ago that Icelanders started decorating for Christmas. It was only at the close of the 19th Century that Christmas ornaments became common in Iceland – something which has grown exponentially since that time.