Inspired by his childhood memories of making Christmas decorations with his grandparents, a Golders Green graduate has launched a business selling craft sets.

Ham & High: Shop LocalShop Local (Image: Archant)

Kirill Nikitin’s Little City Lights paper decorations come in a signature retro-style vinyl sleeve and are assembled at home - a distraction for the household during the UK’s month-long lockdown.

The designs are of small, grotto-style houses, which can be lit up from within with an LED light.

They come in both paper and fire-retardant materials - the latter being suitable for display on a traditional Christmas tree. Each house is made of watercolour style paper, and takes around ten minutes to make.

The 22-year-old, studied linguistics at the University of Edinburgh, graduating in May of this year, started the business after his offers for graduate work fell through at the onset of the pandemic.

He said: “I decided it would be a really good idea to bring this to the market, a commercial project of some sort. I just saw a niche and kind of went for it.

“It’s a really, really cosy kind of memory [with my grandparents] and I’m quite firm believer that, although we are a commercial project, Christmas is becoming very commercialised.

“Everyone has the same sort of decorations, they’re all made out of the same sort of material and they all come from the same place.”

READ MORE: Belsize graduate launches online bakery – and helps fundraise for breast cancer charities

READ MORE: Dunn’s bakery Crouch End ‘hyped’ to open in Muswell Hill

Setting up a business in the pandemic, according to Kirill, has been a “whirlwind” - filled with ups and downs as sales have fluctuated. Kirill, however, describes himself as an optimist, and doesn’t believe Covid-19 will be around forever.

Kirill has one message for those thinking ahead for their Christmas decorations this year: “If you see a project or a product that looks a bit different and a bit quirky, then don’t be afraid to give it a try.

“You might really like it and your money is going much, much further into making someone’s day, and [you’re] funding a local business to make it grow, improving your community, and improving your local economy.”

Visit or call 07838 399000