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11 Decorating Ideas to Steal from the Scandinavians

Posted on Friday, July 17th, 2015 and is filed under Architecture & Interiors.

Doesn’t it seem like Scandinavians get home decor exactly right all the time? Maybe it’s because they have had to turn their homes into the ultimate sanctuary to escape those long Nordic winters. With white playing a winning role, this decor provides the perfect blank slate to add any colour combo, from soft pastels to bold black accents, for a modern edge. Scandinavian style focuses on liveability and doesn’t worry about leaving everything out in the open. From unusual nature accents to metallic and excessively fluffy throw rugs, here are 11 of my favourite design ideas to steal for your own home.

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1.Play with Complementary Colours: Scandi homes aren’t usually filled with a lot of bold, bright colour. Their beauty comes from a simple, neutral colour palette, but it never looks cold or boring because of the layering of complementary colours. Using multiple shades of the same color creates interest and depth and doesn’t leave your space feeling stark.

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2.More Plants: Plants add colour, offer texture and clean your air, making your home a little bit healthier. They are a great way to bring interest to your space without making it feel too cluttered.

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See also: Dark, bold trends of commercial spaces inspiring Homeowners

3.Make the Best of Awkward Spaces: Part of the beauty of Scandinavian decor is that no space goes to waste. If you have a few extra inches, you can mount some shelves on the wall to use as a home library or even a mini home office space.

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4.Allow for Breathing Room: When furniture is given space “to breathe,” you can really appreciate the pieces you have. This concept applies whether you live in a studio apartment or a roomy house. Trust that when every nook isn’t packed with furniture, the room will feel much more relaxing.

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5.Add Texture: Scandinavian decor isn’t so much about colour play, but more about natural textures. From unfinished wooden pieces to fur rugs and soft linen bedding, bringing nature into your home will add to the restful feeling the decor is famous for. Here, colourful chairs, a spiky light fixture and the bright patterned pillows keep things interesting.

See also: Living interiors with Kelly Wearstler at home

 

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6.Mix Up Styles: Scandinavian decor gets along great with everyone. If you don’t want to go all the way with the neutrals and simple style pieces, feel free to add Scandi elements to mid-century and even log cabin homes.

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7.Embrace the Dark: While they’re famous for their clean white interiors, Scandinavian homes appreciate a good dark shade too. Add drama without turning your room into a cave by painting one wall dark and going from there. If you don’t want to paint, adding black accent pieces like a striped rug or pillows is a fun way to add some dark drama.

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8.Find the Patterns: When it comes to mixing bold patterns together, just keep everything within the same colour family. And be sure to keep the rest of the room nice and simple so the space doesn’t start to feel chaotic.

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See also: New restaurant in London by Bill Granger

 

9.Accessorize: Just because Scandi decor is simple and functional doesn’t mean it’s stark. Some of the best accessories are mirrors to reflect light. Scandinavian decor puts emphasis on natural elements, so make picture frames out of twigs, show off a nature collection or hang nature-inspired pieces of art. Concrete candles bring in texture, and a vase filled with branches is an inexpensive way to make your space look very upscale.

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10.Think Simple: Scandinavian furniture doesn’t have to be super cheap, but when it comes to the aesthetic, think simple designs and clean lines. Scandinavian designs include lots of natural wood and are usually streamlined without extra decorative additions. But whatever you do, don’t think everything has to match! A little bit of mismatching adds a whole lot of personality.

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11.Let in the Light: Since Scandinavians spend winter months in darkness, they know how to take advantage of sunlight and fresh air. Keep the curtains minimal and choose light colours or sheer fabrics. Use several light sources in your rooms by adding different floor lamps and table lamps to really set the mood.

What’s your favourite aspect of Scandinavian home decor? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

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