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Several generations of Swedes have grown up with her red-cheeked "tomte (elf/gnome) children . Aina Stenberg MasOlle illustrated Sweden's first advent calendar 1934 and then came to do another 29 . She was born in 1885 in Stockholm as the second youngest of a merchant family with twelve children. The home is described as happy and harmonious, with a dad who likes telling stories to children and who was anxious that the girls would get a job. The whole family played music, wrote and painted. Aina laid down among her siblings with paper and crayons on her stomach on the lounge carpet and drew. When she was ten years old, she began drawing Christmas and Easter cards. She boldly walked up to a publisher with her first Christmas cards and had them accepted. She received 15 kronor for the same number of illustrations and never in later life,was was she as happy for any fees as she was over the first self-earned pennies.

Aina Stenberg-Masolle, 1885-1975. Photographer: Ferdinand Flodin

Through the Technical School, which was the past "Konstfack", and Althin art school, she came into the Academy of Art. There she met her future husband, Dalecarlian Helmer Olsson, called MasOlle. After their marriage they bought an old log house in Dalarna (Dalecarlia) as they dismantled and erected again in Siljansnäs high above Lake Siljan. Aina Stenberg MasOlle enjoyed life in the countryside, where she walked around and talked to the old and listened to the superstitions and legends about elves and trolls. In addition, she was an extremely prolific professional woman. She drew between 5000 and 6000 various designs for Christmas, Easter and New Year cards. Often, she worked with some of the family's two young daughters sitting on her lap.

MasOlle Gammelgård

Helmer MasOlle

Dalahäst. The Dalahäst (Dalecarlia Horse) is typical for the province of Dalecarlia / Dalarna(and i think it can be found on Sheriffs cars in the city of Mora, USA).

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