Minimalism may be giving way to maximalism, but when it comes to clean, simple design, Scandinavian decor remains popular. The guiding philosophy behind this centuries-old style is to make every space as cozy and comfortable as possible. With Scandinavian design, the ultimate goal is a home that maximizes natural light and generates feelings of contentment and well-being.
Scandinavian interior design avoids the unnecessary and focuses on beauty and function. But it can be challenging to make a space feel cozy and inviting with minimal decor and stark white walls. These six tips will help you incorporate Scandinavian design while making your home feel warm, welcoming, and most of all, cozy.
Let the Light In
When winters are long and dark, it’s important to make the most of any and all available light. Scandinavian design celebrates natural light and employs different methods to help maximize the natural light in a room.
White walls are a trademark of Scandinavian design as they help reflect light and make spaces feel brighter. Many homes with Scandinavian decor will also forgo curtains to avoid blocking incoming light. If you need curtains for privacy, opt for sheers that screen the view but still let plenty of light in.
Choose Natural Materials
When you enter a home with Scandinavian decor, everything should feel organic. From bare wood floors and warm wood furniture to the use of textiles such as linen and fur, everything should be made from natural materials.
To create the look at home, skip the wall-to-wall carpeting, and proudly display your wood floors. When shopping for upholstered furniture, look for pieces that leave the wooden structure exposed. Choose materials such as leather and cotton, which provide the natural aesthetic that is so prevalent in this style.
Adopt a Neutral Color Scheme
Scandinavian decor has a reputation for sparse white spaces, but the subtle use of muted hues helps add depth and warmth. Like the choice of materials, color palettes found in Scandinavian homes are also inspired by nature. Amber, moss green, dusty rose, and ice blue are all popular colors in Nordic design.
To achieve this uncomplicated look, start with a neutral base and layer in a few accessories of a single hue. Feel free to use different tones and shades of the same color to create a cohesive look. Since unnecessary decorations should be few and far between, introduce color with functional accessories such as area rugs, pillows, and blankets.
Embrace Simple Accessories
Plants are the decoration of choice in Scandinavian interiors. They bring in a taste of the outdoors and add warmth and texture to a room. In the absence of clutter, plants such as cacti, succulents, and rubber trees add color in various muted hues.
If you’re looking for something else to elevate your decor, candles are another Scandinavian staple. On long winter nights, a collection of lit candles will add warmth, light, and coziness to a space.
Add Layers of Texture
Texture is the secret to preventing spaces with minimal decoration from feeling flat and cold. By layering in different textures, you can create depth and interest in any room. The use of natural materials makes it easy to introduce texture even in spaces with few accessories.
Let wood floors and furniture provide a warm base layer while using other natural materials such as leather, stone, and wool create contrast. Add sheepskin rugs, shearling blankets, and soft cotton pillows to create the coveted cozy and inviting vibe.
Scandinavian design places functionality above ornamentation. Spaces are simple and uncluttered with modest layouts that aim for a relaxed and comfortable atmosphere. Remove clutter and unnecessary decorations to get back to basics in your home.
Mid-century modern furnishings have their roots in Scandinavian design and many of the pieces popular today have been around for decades. Look for practical pieces with classic iconic shapes such as tulip tables, egg chairs, and swan chairs. Avoid ornate or excessive detailing and opt for pieces that combine beauty, simplicity, and functionality.
With its blend of clean lines, luxurious textures, and soft hues, Scandinavian design appeals to both our desire to live in a tidy space and our need to be comfortable. It’s no wonder this simple style has remained popular for decades.