A dream came true when the house, designed by Edla for her family, was completed and they can now celebrate the great midwinter holidays in their new home. Christmas begins when she hangs a chandelier over the dining table.
Edla Heikkilä, 24, interior designer, and Antti Heikkilä, 28, supervisor of electrical engineering, Livia, 4, and Aava, 2. Their home is a one-family house in Oulu, northern Finland. They designed and built the house, with 130 m² of floor space, themselves.
CHRISTMAS LIGHTS can be seen twinkling in the Heikkilä family home when looking at the house from outside through the falling snow. A Christmas tree glitters by the large living room window alongside a huge paper star. Inside, Edla lights candles in the large chandelier, hung over the dining table to mark the beginning of Christmas.
It was summer 2019 when Edla's family of four moved into the detached house they designed and built for themselves in Oulu. The previous, smaller house, ten kilometers away, was also self-built. Edla designed the interior of the previous home, too, and during the process, got the spark to study interior design and make it her profession. Christmas is celebrated in the house, built on one level, where Edla could fulfill the family’s wishes and needs.
“The children’s rooms are moderately sized because I wanted as many square meters as possible for the large living area. I also wanted a large island that works as a convenient serving table as well – we get a lot of visitors. I think we succeeded pretty well with the choices for the house. I still don’t rule out the possibility of a third house, though, when the girls get a bit older.”
One big space
The natural place for the Christmas tree was next to the dining table, so it can be seen from all over the living area. For the floor, Edla chose Timberwise’s wide larch planks, with a light finish. The sofa bench was designed by Edla and made of planks by Antti, and they ordered a futon mattress to place on top. Green was selected as the color for the Lazy sofa by Hakola, and the same kind of tones continue in the forest visible through the large windows. The top of the coffee table, designed by Edla, is covered with tiles.
Lovely old-fashioned ornaments
Edla decorates the tree with the children. This year, paper and cardboard ornaments, inspired by old scrapbook pictures, have been placed on the branches of the Christmas tree.
Wrapped up well in advance
For wrapping of presents, Edla has chosen green and cinnamon-colored waxed paper, and as the final touch, some jute cord with soft green and brown ribbons. A melted seal completes the wrapping.
Little elves, mother’s helpers
For the kitchen, Edla chose timeless and harmonious white cabinets by Puustelli. The large island is the most beloved place in the kitchen. Everyone gets busy around it all day, and it is also great as a serving counter. Friends, too, have young children, so there may be as many as twenty guests at a time in the house.
Cake and pottery
A date cake, decorated with icing sugar and figs, is a must at Christmas for Edla. On the table, Edla places a sand-colored linen cloth and self-made ceramics. Now is the time to sit down and enjoy some date cake with mulled wine.
The Christmas spirit is created together
In this family, a large chandelier with real candles, hung above the dining table, is the first sign of Christmas. Livia and Aava get to bake and do crafts with their mother at the large dining table. The children's favorite pastime is baking gingerbread cookies.
Shelves instead of bedside tables
A finger panel wall was made as the headboard for the bed. The grey paint on the walls is Tikkurila's color V484 Ajopuu. The brown sheets are by Midnatt. A paper star by Granit, a Christmas tree candleholder, and conifers add a Christmas mood. The embroidered pillow is made by Tyynelä’s elves.
One room for play, one for dreams
For the time being, the girls want to share a bedroom and the other children’s room is a play area. The bedroom is painted in Tikkurila’s color 574X. The plywood bed is self-designed and home made. The carpet is by Anno.
From a blizzard to home comforts
Edla designed her family’s new 130-square-meter house on one level. She placed the parents’ bedroom at one end of the house, and at the other, two rooms for Aava and Livia, and a third as a study. The large living room windows overlook the forest.
Text: Jonna Kivilahti Photos: Krista Keltanen
The story was published in Avotakka's issue 12/2020