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Welcome to the Instagram blog! See how Instagrammers are capturing and sharing the world's moments through photo and video features, user spotlights, tips and news from Instagram HQ.

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current events, påskris, Easter, sweden,

Celebrating Easter in Sweden with Påskris

For a look at how Easter is celebrated in Sweden and across Northern Europe, browse the #påskris hashtag.

In the spring, florists, markets and city centers in Sweden display twigs and trees sprouting some unexpected blooms: feathers.

Påskris, or “Easter twigs,” refer to birch twigs that have been decorated after being cut and tied together. These Easter trees, especially when displayed in the home, are adorned with colorful feathers, eggs and more.

Beginning in the 17th century, Christian Swedes used påskris—without the feathers—to strike one another as a reminder of Jesus’s suffering. During the 18th century, however, påskris transformed into a more vibrant (and less painful) tradition and have spread to other Nordic countries.

Påskris are placed in water-filled vases and provide bursts of color that Sweden’s spring cannot supply due to its harsh and lengthy winters. If one is lucky enough to find twigs with some early blooms, however, the leaves grow and provide natural color to the påskris, bringing the new life of spring into the home. The more courageous locals will also bring these bursts of color outside the home by adorning the trees that line streets and city centers with colorful feathers and decorations to celebrate Easter and welcome the spring.

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Sweden, National Day,

June 6, the National Day of Sweden

On June 6, Sweden celebrates National Day (Sveriges nationaldag).

The date holds historic significance for two reasons. On June 6, 1523, the independent state of Sweden was established with the election of King Gustav Vasa. Vasa’s ascendance brought an end to the Kalmar Union and the reign of a single ruler over the kingdoms of Denmark, Sweden and Norway. On the same day in 1809, Sweden adopted a new constitution granting civil rights and liberties to its citizens.

Experience National Day through the lens of the Swedes by browsing the #nationaldag hashtag.

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Location Feature, photo feature, treehotel, sweden,

A Night in Sweden’s Treehotel

In a remote part of Swedish Lapland, tucked away in a forest just south of the Arctic Circle, are the most stylish tree houses in the world. The Treehotel in Harads, Sweden, has five unique “treerooms” all elevated 4-6 meters above ground: The Cabin, The Mirrorcube, The Bird’s Nest, The Blue Cone, and The UFO. Each room was designed by one of Scandinavia’s leading architects with custom-designed furniture, lighting, and fabrics.

The idea behind the Treehotel is to create a space that gives people a chance to “experience nature amongst the tree-tops, while also providing a uniquely designed housing experience.” Want to see more? Check out photos Instagrammers have taken there by visiting the Treehotel location page.