What are ‘Gonks’?
Gonks, also known as Tomte in Sweden, Tonttu in Finland, Nisse in Norway and Denmark, are small mythological white-bearded creatures, resembling garden gnomes. While they used to be seen as home protectors, these little characters, wearing knitted hats and arising from the Scandinavian folklore, are now considered as the Nordic version of our Western Santa Claus.
The Gonks myth
According to Scandinavian legends and tales, Gonks were powerful guardians protecting farms from potential catastrophes and misfortune. The small household defenders were notably believed to take care of the family and animals, ensuring the financial growth of the farms they were watching. In exchange for their hard work, Gonks liked to be rewarded with porridge and butter. If they were not properly thanked, or worse, if they were faced with rudeness, Gonks could turn into cruel little monsters playing tricks, ruining barns, or even killing animals.
Gonks in today’s society
Nowadays, Gonks are mostly associated with Christmas. Despite the immense popularity of jolly Santa in Scandinavian countries, Gonks have not disappeared, and can even take on the role of Father Christmas. But contrary to Santa who slides down chimneys to distribute his presents, Gonks prefer to knock at front doors to directly hand out their gifts to impatient children.
The short-tempered creatures, which are increasingly depicted as adult-size white bearded men carrying sacks full of presents, are everywhere during Christmas in Scandinavia! Indeed, they gleefully ornament Christmas cards, mugs, plates, living rooms and gardens. Also, some traditions surrounding Gonks continue to exist. For example, it is quite common to leave a bowl full of porridge with butter on the top, on Christmas Eve to make Gonks happy, and therefore ensure good luck for the year ahead.
Seduced by the adorable little creatures, Festive has released a unique range of fun and funky Gonks inspired from the old Scandinavian tales and the modern Nordic beliefs. Wearing long stripped, patterned, or polka-dotted hats, Festive Gonks will enhance your Christmas décor with an ounce of glee and originality. Here are some of our wonderful products:
Assorted standing Christmas Gonks to bring a festive cheer to your Christmas décor: 16cm – 793891 / 35cm – 793884 / 52cm – 793877 / 70cm – 793860
Assorted red & white Nordic Gonks with knit patterned hats to create the perfect winter wonderland scene: 18cm – 689446 / 28cm – 689453
Assorted cuddly Santa Gonks with extremely long and wavy beards: 34cm – 269655 / 52cm – 269662 / 75cm – 269679
Assorted grey haired Gonks to merrily enliven your Christmas décor: 31cm – 689477 / 39cm – 689484
Assorted heart Gonks to spread love in your home this Christmas: 27cm – 689408 / 50cm – 689415 / 100cm – 689422
Assorted heart Gonks with dangling legs to create a delightful atmosphere filled with love: 32cm – 689439
Splat Gonk to make your Christmas joyful: 38cm – P003878 / 45cm – P003877 / 50cm – P003876
Fabulous sitting long leg Gonks with red hats to adorn your home with glee this Christmas: 46cm – P001090 / 65cm – P001091 / 68cm – P001089 / 93cm – P001092.
Hanging Christmas Gonks, perfect to embellish your Christmas tree: 11cm – 793853