In Norway a kremmerhus was a traditional paper carry-bag given out by stores to carry your bits and bobs home. They were especially used for sewing materials, such as needles and cotton, and building materials, such as nuts and nails. The bag was made of paper rolled into a cone-shape – the addition of the handle came later.
Today the kremmerhus is one of the favourite Norwegian Christmas decorations as they can hang anywhere and carry goodies. They can be made very elaborate with patterned material, lace and (fake) fur. However, the paper varieties are still made. It is usual for kremmerhus to hang on Christmas trees but I have also seen them on curtain ties, window hooks, a string along a wall and even in the trees outside. They can carry lollies and nuts, pine cones and decorative tissues or left empty waiting for julenisse to fill.
Kremmerhus are certainly one of the craft activities of Christmas workshops. There are many different construction designs but the one I will present is great for little helpers.
What you need:
Patterned paper – I used wrapping paper
Double sided tape and/or stapler
To make a stencil:
I recommend to make a stencil as this will keep all your kremmerhus the same size and can be used over and over again. The stencil I have below isn’t really that scary – it is just a equal-sided cone shape including curved top with another triangle attached to one of the cones sides. Can you see it? Don’t worry about my measurements, just make sure your long cone lines are the same length from the top to the point.
To make the collar for the cone, I just used some patterned Christmas paper. I used the circular end of the stencil to mark out a line, then moved it up 7cm and marked out a second line. Then I cut out the collar-shape.
On the circle end of the cone cutout, I put double sided tape around the edge. I then stuck half the collar to that side, flipped the card over, folded the other half of the collar over and stuck it down too (because of the circular shape, the second side of the collar can be a little gathered which is fine as it will become the inside of the cone). For the patterned cone (below) I clipped the white collar to make a frayed edge just for something different.
I then picked up the triangle edge and started rolling inwards. You will need to adjust the bottom and top to the correct tightness of the cone so each collar side matches.
Then stick or staple it together so it will hold. There is no need for the cone base to be a perfect point unless you are a perfectionist. Me, I’m a ‘that’ll do’ kind of girl.
Then you have to get your man to hold up your masterpieces so you can take a picture.
Kremmerhus can be used for any type of Christmas decoration. Including the ideas above, they can be attached to wreaths, used as table decorations or as serviette holders on plates, used for holding dried flowers or seeds for the birds outside. They can also be used for little party-bags for guests with a few treats for the way home.
But, as we found out, kremmerhus are irresistible to kids, especially if they know that there should be goodies in them. Our kremmerhus lasted only two minutes on the curtain tie before they were attacked for sweets, making our kremmerhus a little looser than normal.
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