7 Things You Need To Know About Scandinavian Design

Scandinavian design is having a moment right now…

Home Beautiful

We have all seen Scandinavian design on social media, design blogs, and magazines, but do we really know what it is? If you’re second guessing your knowledge on the trend, you aren’t alone. Lionsgate Design is going to break it down for you in seven points so you can find more ways to work it into your home.

1. Minimal
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Scandinavian design wouldn’t be Scandinavian if it wasn’t minimal. The trend has a focus on simplicity and functionality. You will rarely ever see clutter in a true Scandinavian home as the main rule is: the less decor, the better. This rule also goes for colour (or lack thereof). The main colours in a Scandinavian design are neutrals: Beige, Grey or White. However, it’s becoming more popular now to add in injections of colour, such as grey, black, and yellow.

2. Nature and climate
Elle Decor

Scandinavian style was well received when it emerged in the 1930s and people appreciated the ‘beauty in the everyday’ aspect. It was introduced through Nordic designers emphasizing simple designs inspired by nature and the climate of the region. This has now been translated by decorating walls or including touches of nature, like a branch of wood or a wicker basket to add a more rustic-look to complete the Scandinavian motif.

3. Improving daily life
Design Center

At its core, Scandinavian design seeks to improve every day life. Nordic countries get as little as seven hours of daylight in the winter, so lighting is key. You won’t find wall-to-wall carpeting, as hard-wood natural or white floors help the space seem brighter. Furniture is functional, doubling as storage, and window treatments are nonexistent, or sheer at most, in order to maximize the light that comes in.

4. Don’t forget texture
Damsel in Dior

Minimalism is often considered cold and stark to critics, but Scandinavian design creates warmth through textiles, rather than cluttering things with a lot of decorative items. Soft textiles, such as sheepskin, wool, and mohair, are a necessity in cold climates, and keep the aesthetic paired down, but add some visual interest. In other words, anything added should have a practical purpose.

5. A touch of colour
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The palette in Scandinavian design started off strictly neutral, as natural light was hard to find in Nordic homes. But recently, the design is being used all over the world, and people are finding that using colour as accents works. Though still in earthy tones—dark blues, greens, grays, and browns.

6. It’s all about balance
Apartment Therapy

In order to find the right balance, we need to stick to the “not too little, and not too much” theory. As talked about, Scandinavian design focuses on being minimalist while infusing warmth through textiles. The key is to find a balance between minimalist and cozy. Mix and match old and new, and try to ensure no two items are the same. This means adding lots of textiles in the form of sheepskins, linen cushions, and layered rugs to boost the “curl-up-and-relax” factor, while keeping furniture and decor minimal and streamlined.

7. It’s timeless
Apartment Therapy

The beauty of this design is that it’s incredibly versatile. The simple aesthetic means it can fit seamlessly with almost any style and era.  You could deck your space out completely in Scandinavian-inspired decor, or you could incorporate pieces sparingly, if you just want to dabble with the design. Just make sure to keep the space decluttered so you can more easily appreciate the beauty of each item.

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