I first heard about the Tomte from my daughter who moved to Sweden in 2010. A little creature from Scandinavian folklore that is usually associated around the winter solstice and Christmas. Similar to a gnome, he is only 3 feet tall with a white beard and red cap. To Scandinavians, he is like Santa Claus and is the bearer of gifts. The Tomte often takes up residence at a family farm. Living in the home and helping with chores and protecting the children and animals. Like the faeries he can have a temper. So treat him fairly, or he will play tricks and cause mischief to the family. A bowl of porridge is commonly left out at Christmas. This also is a nice gesture to let the Tomte know he is welcome.
During Christmastime, you will often see Tomte with red hats and beards hanging around the Swedish homes as decorations. Having collected a few over the years Tomtar are always welcome in my home.
I now regularly make these little characters. Varying how each one looks so no two are alike.