What comes to your mind when you think of Scandinavia? Apart from polar nights, long winters, and a penchant for technology, Europe’s far north is also famous for its stylish interior design. An expression of effortless elegance and inimitable unity of function and aesthetics, Nordic décor does away with superficial ornaments and visual noise, and it is also very simple to achieve. Everyone deserves a little bit of the Scandinavian no-nonsense vibe in their living area – and here are a few ways on how to carry out a budget-friendly home update following in the Nordic footsteps.
No carpets, please!
Although winters in Northern Europe are known for biting winds and extremely low temperatures, carpets and rugs never gained widespread popularity among Scandinavian homeowners. To recreate the Nordic feel, pull back the carpeting and expose hardwood floors. Often coated by a matte varnish or painted white, bare floorboards in Scandinavian homes require less maintenance and are much easier to clean than lavish carpeting, so you will be hitting two boons with one simple décor tweak.
White and crisp as snow
The dominant colour scheme in Scandinavian homes relies heavily on neutral hues. Although one would think Northerners are sick of seeing white expanses all around them, walls and furnishings in Nordic homes are often executed in white to maximize reflection of natural light during long glum winter days. Pastel tones such as beige, grey, baby blue, and light green can be used as sparing accents to break the décor monotony, but their deployment is usually limited to bed linens, cushions, tableware, or an odd accent wall. If you are looking to add an accent or two, reworking your upholstering can be the easiest and most affordable.
One with Nature
Scandinavians are fond of nature, and they often add potted plants to their living areas as cute reminders that grim winters will eventually end, ceding the throne to verdant spring. Tiny botanical gardens in a vacant corner of the room will increase visual interest of the Nordic home, while cute cacti lined up on bookshelves or desktop, storage baskets made from natural materials, a bunch of flowers on the dining table, or a few succulents on the windowsill will help break the monochromatic look and spruce up the vibe in the room.
Clean lines and soft edges
Even tableware in Scandinavian homes is pared down and subordinated to function rather than visual extravaganza. Nordic-inspired plates, trays, and mugs embody the straightforward, simplistic attitude of Scandinavia: no needless distractions, use of natural materials, and accent on purpose and longevity supplement the classical feel in a Scandi home. Often crafted from clay, wood, or brass, kitchen utensils and containers mimic the austerity of nature in the Nordic regions while still conveying a powerful message about simplicity and everlasting minimal style.
Let there be light
Since Europe’s far north suffers from dire lack of natural light during winters, Nordic designers love to experiment with shapes and sizes in lamp designs. In this way, function marries form in often fascinating pieces of light art: contemporary and sophisticated, lighting fixtures in Scandinavian homes have aesthetic value and often add a note of playfulness and creativity without compromising the Nordic emphasis on purpose, colour balance, and plain décor.
A Scandinavian garden tale
The Nordic look can be transplanted into the backyard to a highly pleasing effect. White garden furnishings, wooden benches, simplistic yard art, minimalist statues, and tables topped by large beeswax candles will help recreate the feel of a Scandinavian fairytale al fresco. You can also adorn the garden table with weatherproof fabrics in neutral hues for a Nordic-inspired outdoor makeover, and display foliage in horn-like pots, vases, and plant hangers like a true Viking.
Charming, simple, and easy to replicate, Nordic décor revolves around practicality, unity with nature, and minimalist elegance. A return to the basics and evergreen design, Scandinavian look is true eye-candy, and if executed with care, it will make you fall in love with your space like no other décor out there.
Images via Stadshem