If you are any bit familiar with The House That Lars Built, or you’re good at reading in between the lines, we are a design company with a strong adoration for Scandinavian aesthetic. I went to design school in Copenhagen, married a Dane, and continued to live there until 2014. There is just something about Scandinavian design, culture, and lifestyle that I can’t quit. One item of Swedish culture I fell in love with are the Dala Horses!
The Dala Horse (or Dala Häst as it’s pronounced in Swedish) is a traditional icon of Sweden. It’s a carved and painted wooden horse, most commonly red, with intricate hand-painted details. They are utterly charming and come in a rainbow of colors. Because we’re such big fans, we decided it was high-time we created a DIY Dala Horse. After a little digging, we discovered you can order raw wooden Dala horses on Amazon Prime! This is such a fun way to customize a traditional emblem. We covered ours with loads of florals in pretty pastels. But these horses would be adorable in a million different renditions: color-blocked, Alexander Girard-inspired, whatever you dream up! We want to see your creations!
Learn where to purchase wooden horses to create your own DIY Dala Horse!
DIY Dala Horse
- Start by painting a base coat on your horse. Then paint details to your heart’s content! Feel free to use traditional Dala horse designs as your jumping off point, or copy ours directly!
- Then If you want your horse to have a glossy finish like traditional Dala Horses, spray with a clear gloss spray paint. Just make sure your horse is dry from your detail painting beforehand.
- Afterward, display your hand-painted horse for all to see!
Photography by Jane Merritt | Painted by Drew Toolson