Powerlessness, a feeling I'm all too familiar with. A girl has had her best friend taken from her against her will.
The yule goat (sw: julbocken) is a Northern European Christmas symbol of many origins. With ties to Indo-European harvest spirits, the Old Norse god Thor and his two goats Tanngrisnir and Tanngnjóstr, the proto-Slavic god Devac, its' mean cousin Krampus and Lucifer himself (among others), Chritmas/Yule/the winter solstice and goats have been tied together for centuries, if not millenia. In Scandinavia, the tradition of julebukking (sw: gå julbock) has ties to pre-christian pagan rituals and has survived through the christianisation of Scandinavia into modern day, though most of what's left are goats made of straw, often placed underneath the christmas tree.
In Sweden, the tradition developed from the lower class dressing up as a goat, walking from house to house and performing plays for small amounts of money, food, or alcohol, to eventually becoming the bringer of gifts on Christmas eve. Eventually, santa took its' place and the yule goat eventually became a normal goat, helping Santa carry the gifts. Though the tradition of the yule goat delivering presents still lives on to some extent in Finland, it is sadly rare to see our horned friend in the flesh on christmas eve in Sweden today.
The costume consists of the leather and hide mask, goat bell, cloak, bag, gloves and träskor (swedish clogs). Whatever else one decides to wear with the costume is up to the wearer. In these pictures the model is wearing a black dress and tights to give a more feminine look, but one can wear whatever one pleases, and therefore the goat changes with the clothes. The costume was made to be gender-neutral so that the wearer can have more freedom of expression and imagination.
The pattern, tooled and painted into the mask, consists of an Urnes-area inspired runic beast and snake, intertwined with traditional Dalecarlian kurbits florals and dalrunor. Writing in runic alphabets is not common practice in the Nordics today, but in the Dalecarlian pats of Sweden, the practice lived on as long as into the early 1900s. The Futharc was adapted over time to closely resemble the latin alphabet and accomodate for the liguistic changes of the region, eventually becoming Dalrunor. These Dalrunor were used locally well into the 1900s and has only somewhat recently fallen out of practice. The bind rune on the snout is of the elder futharc, while the runes inside the beast are dalrunor, quoting the well-known Christmas poem Tomten by Viktor Rydberg. The goal is to tie old art traditions in with newer (but by no means modern) art traditions of the Dalecarlian region.
Träskor is traditional Swedsih footwear, the most common model being the one I used for the yule goat, where the sole is made of wood and the top of leather. These shoes have been customized to fit the theme of the rest of the costume. The text is in dalrunor, and the two shoes each have a different word carved into them. Fasansväckare and Gåvobringare.
The gloves were made to resemble cloven hooves to remind us that the yule goat is not fully human nor goat, and not of this world. They are made of Tärnsjö Fallow deer veg tan leather and embroidered with the isaz, sowilo and gebo runes in beige waxed cotton thread. Our yule goat also carries with them a bag for holding small, precious gifts. The motif on the lid has, within a runic ouroboros, the word Skogsvandrare written in dalrunor. The cloak has practical arm slits to easier keep the cold out while handing out said little gifts.
Custom made halter, fitting a pony circa 11 hh.
Vibrant pink Tärnsjö veg tanned leather, padded neck- and nosepiece for comfort.
Bejeweled noseband and swivel eye bolt snap to catch the eye.
White waxed cotton thread hand stitching.
My prices for individual art commissions are listed below:
|Inked with flat watercolours
|Inked, coloured and shaded w/o background
|Inked, coloured, shaded with background
|Shipping Outside Europe
For any questions or specific requests, feel free to contact me!
Full colour with simple colour background 35 EUR
Full colour with nature background 40 EUR
Two pets in one image + 15 EUR
Increase size to A4 + 25 EUR
Shipping costs outside Europe varies, free shipping within Europe.
Leatherwork prices vary depending on project. Feel free to reach out about project ideas and pricing!