Wreaths by Tove Jansson – with new Moomin printables!

Throughout her creative career, Tove Jansson also enjoyed drawing different wreaths for various purposes. Explore the many Moomin-themed wreaths she created here and download new Moomin colouring pages at the end!

He was the owner of the moonlight on the ground, he fell in love with the most beautiful of the trees, he made wreaths of leaves and hung them around his neck.

Tales from Moominvalley (1962)

In Klovharun, a small rocky island where Tove Jansson and her partner Tuulikki Pietilä spent their summers for close to 30 years, Tove was a familiar sight with blooming flowers in her hair.

Tove Jansson wreath

Wreaths are round flower and leaf arrangements used as a decoration, remembrance for a person – or an accessory. Wreaths of all kind have long been a part of Nordic traditions: a floral wreath worn on the head is common during Midsummer and seasonal wreaths often decorate people’s doors during Easter or Christmas.

So it is perhaps cultural that Tove had a liking to floral wreaths – but her personal tradition of wearing one goes back to an encounter with one of Sweden’s most-known portrait photographers, Hans Gedda.

Watch a short video of Gedda looking back at his iconic photoshoot with Tove:

Tove Jansson’s wreath illustrations with Moomins

During her creative career, Tove drew many unique wreaths for various purposes, such as books, record covers, letters and envelopes, and often included Moomins in them.

A draft cover of the Finn Family Moomintroll (image below), for example, ended up being used by the Finnish postal service in their envelopes in the 1990s. Some of the wreaths have also been used in different Moomin products – can you spot them?

Tove Jansson wreath Moomin




Tove Jansson wreath Moomin
The cover of the first edition of the book Muminpappans Bravader

This delicate, blue-ink illustration (below) was originally used in a Finnish postal letter. Do you recognise which popular Moomin product it has also been recently used in?


Moomin wreath_letter
Wreath for the Moomin letter by the Finnish postal service
Tove Jansson wreath Tuulen laulu
Cover by Tove Jansson for the “Tuulen laulu” record published in 1972

Rare tableware sets from the 1990s

Between 1990-1994 Moomin Arabia produced children’s tableware sets with one of Tove’s wreath drawings.

Moomin Arabia’s now-retired ceramic illustrator Tove Slotte modified the original illustration (below) for the plate and chose the colouring for the design.

“I wanted to have more of the main characters in the plate design, so I removed the bat, fish, the Joxter, girl and the snake, and replaced them by Snufkin, Snorkmaiden and Moominpappa”, Slotte explains.

Moomin wreath_2
The original design by Tove Jansson

For one of the first models of the plate (below) Tove herself asked for the colouring of the Gaffsie’s flowers and Salome’s dress to be changed. The plate that was produced in the end features Gaffsie and Salome with lighter dresses.

Some of these test versions, however, ended up on sale – maybe you have this kind of rarity in your Moomin collection?

Moomin children plate by Arabia

There are also various wreath drawings in Tove Jansson’s personal archives that haven’t been traced to their origins of use (images below).

Moomin wreath_3

Moomin wreath_moomin names

New Moomin wreath printables

Looking for wholesome Midsummer activities? Download and print these new A4 colouring pages here: Moomin wreath / Moomin quote wreath.

Moomin wreath colouring pages