Scandinavian interior design has been redefining British homes since the 1990s. With concepts like hygge seizing people’s imagination worldwide, it’s no wonder that the basics of Scandinavian design are popular.
What is it?
Renowned for its simplicity, utility and beauty. Freshome describes the style as pure and pared back, “centred around warm functionality, clean lines, flawless craftsmanship and understated elegance.” Light also plays a critical role. Often accented by the use of earthy muted tones, white walls or floors to reflect natural light, rustic materials and minimal ornamentation.
Kristian Byrge, founder of Muuto, says that, “For many, Scandinavian design is mostly defined by light wood and minimalist homes. Homes in the Nordic region are warm, relaxed and welcoming, full of furniture and things that are practical, functional and beautiful. Our environment shapes our design.
Why has it become so popular?
The ethos behind Scandinavian design is to improve daily life. This means furniture should be comfortable and practical and exist to enrich the daily life of its owner. The Scandi look is laid-back but at the same time sophisticated. Christina Exsteen, creative director at one of Denmark’s prominent fashion houses By Malene Birger, says, “Scandinavians are very good at lending their own twist to their look, like with layers.”
Kristian Byrge thinks it’s popular because “Scandinavian design is often called the democratic design, because it is aligned to the masses, with products that are accessible and that they can afford […] the shape is always the focal point. To focus on functionality while creating beauty is an important but difficult balance—that is the basic principle of Nordic design.”
In short, the high quality of Scandinavian furnishings combined with their practicality, affordability and elegance has created a timeless style.
What elements of Scandi design have we embraced?
Scandinavian Minimalism has never seemed more appealing. Comfort and self-expression are prominent themes of the 21st century. For those who can’t invest in long-lasting quality without having to break the bank, the basic principles of Scandinavian design fill a gap in the market.
“Wood burning stoves [in the UK] have experienced a huge upsurge in popularity over the past decade,” says Stove Industry Alliance. It’s not surprising since stoves reduce heating bills, cut carbon emissions, and offer a hygge kind of cosiness.
Other elements include light floorboard or tiled flooring. Warm wooden furniture, plenty of lighting, splashes of colour and pattern against a neutral background. Eco-friendly materials and organic shapes.
What companies are the best source of ideas?
If you’re looking to add elements of Scandinavian design to your home, take a look at Quince Living for its affordability as well as its wide range of beautiful home accessories.
For sleek and luxurious furniture, Bolia’s catalogue is a gorgeous form of expression.
If you’re after rustic and playful, then the Finnish Design Shop will excite you.
Perhaps you’re ready to bring the family in around your very own stove. Well, Dovre stoves are “built to last Scandinavian winters” and have a premium reputation.
Or if you’re just looking to browse through Scandinavia’s bestselling brands, then Skandic Hus has gathered the sleek and the brilliant, the cute and the practical under one roof.