Scandinavian Simplicity

Adele Shotton-Pugh | Posted

Whether you know it or not, your home is probably already drawing on an awful lot of Scandinavian style already. If you have any simple wooden furniture or you have been to places like Ikea or Ilva of late then chances are you are already on your way to a fully themed house. And therefore may I commend you on your good taste and eye for classic 20th century design, not to mention subtle referencing of one of the most important periods in British design history….no, I’m not talking about Ikea’s opening day, exciting though it was I really do love those meatballs.

You see, the Scandinavian home-style invasion occurred much earlier than most of us realise. The material shortage during WW2 brought about an enforced change in regards to what was considered good design. Simplicity was favoured over needless decoration, and only materials that were in plentiful supply were to be used. The elegant furniture of Scandinavia which was sourced from the plentiful blonde wood forests was welcomed almost immediately and has continued to influence, if not shape and lead, contemporary design ever since. The way to achieve a truly Scandinavian look is by retaining a room’s simplicity. Furniture should be light and functional rather than ostentatious.

Try to represent nature in your themes and even include one or two plants to a room. The old stereotype of wall to wall pine couldn’t be further from the truth, what you are trying to achieve is actually a very streamlined and modern feel. Try to limit what you include in a room as you want to maintain a calm, uncluttered ambience. Favour light wooden blinds or a cheap roller blind over fussy curtains and include lots of low lighting such as table and floor lamps to promote relaxation. Ensure you maintain a unified colour scheme throughout the house as this will promote harmonious feelings and create some airiness.

White is a typical background scheme and really does match up well with blonde wood but if this is a little too sterile for you then opt for pale green or Egyptian cotton. For flooring you wont go wrong with classic oak, but to add a little twist to a classic theme (something the Swedish love to do) why not choose a more unusual wood such as Maple or Iroko? Either way, top off your flooring with a huge oversize rug to give a really cosy finish.

To really add comfort add lots of natural throws in both the living area and bedrooms and on the bed go for a charming embroidered duvet cover in morning snow white. As a final touch, mirror the whimsical and playful approach to design favoured by Scandinavians by spreading some block colours in the shape of a novelty clock or some bright cushions or even a beanbag. The brilliant thing about the Scandinavian look is that it so easy to achieve and doesn’t make a room appear too obviously themed. It is a really cost effective style to adopt- not least of because you will probably already own furniture that is perfect for the look.

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