The Yule Cat, or Jólakötturinn, is a fearsome thing. Icelandic folklore has it that anyone not dressed from top to toe in new clothes by Christmas would be quickly eaten up by the vicious cat. Whether it’s a story made up to encourage slovenly farm workers to knit garments faster in the run up to Christmas, or a tale to keep naughty kids in check, the Yule cat is on it’s way. Beware.
Some people believe that the Yule cat is the house cat of the belligerent Grýla and lazy Leppalúði, the parents of the thirteen Yule lads who visit Icelandic homes in the run up to Christmas.
I stumbled across these wonderful Yule cat decorations in Reykjavik, made by Huseina Schott, an artist originally from Guelph, ON. Canada.
She graduated with a BFA in Studio Arts and Film Animation at Concordia University in Montreal, QC. Canada . After working as an artist and art framer in Montreal for several years, she married and moved to Reykjavik, Iceland in 2009, where she is a firm believer in the Yule cat.