Immerse in the Timeless Allure of Scandinavian Interior Design
A Scandinavian design is characterised by its beauty for simplicity, minimalism, and functionality. Through a blend of different textures, spaces and colours, it transforms a home into a place filled with cosiness, warmth and harmonies. By tapping on the clean and minimalist look and combining it with light earthy tones, these elements also come together to provide an uncluttered and calming mood in any home.
Clean, calming and warm, a Scandinavian Design never fails to bring light to a space. It also invites vitality and allows people to create an inviting environment. It’s perhaps no surprise that Scandinavian-inspired theme homes are one of the most common interior design styles in Singapore. To truly grasp the beauty of Scandinavian Design, let us first dive into its origins.
Related read: Twin Vew: A Glimpse Through A Bohemian-Styled Home
The History of Scandinavian Design
Originating from the 1930s within five Nordic countries – namely, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden; these countries help to pave the way for Nordic designs. Going hand-in-hand with nature, they began utilising elements of nature and embodying minimalism in their furniture. Over the course of many years, Scandinavian furniture makes its mark in homes and even serve as exports for many Nordic designers.
Fast forward to post-World War II, many of these pieces of natural furniture were heavily promoted, which gained them international recognition amidst other contemporary trends. Today, Scandinavian designs have flourished and stood the test of time, becoming a common sight in many homes.
With a Scandinavian design, it has shown many homemakers the way of connecting with the environment and the art of living a simple lifestyle. Yet, there is no doubt that Scandinavian furniture enhances homes and deepens our connection to nature.
What are the Key Scandinavian Design Elements?
Through thoughtful design and timeless appeal, Scandinavian elements have made their way into our homes and brought nature closer to us. Here are some of its most distinctive elements and how they help create beautiful homes.
1. Minimalism to Maximise any Home
A Scandinavian home is always kept minimal to ensure that every piece in the room counts. Clean lines and edges will mark the walls of the home, while furniture such as cabinets and tables flaunts good craftsmanship and timeless designs. To highlight the beauty of light spaces, simple lines help to open the rooms and invite natural lighting in to maximise space.
With natural lighting, rooms are easily transformed into more inviting spaces while maintaining the elements of calmness and airiness. However, to ensure that a room doesn’t have too much white, wooden tones and warm lighting are often used to introduce more warmth into a space. Plants can be a great addition if you are looking to add a pop of color, which you can place either as a coffee table piece or as a larger ornament, as seen above. That being said, don’t go too overboard with the accessories and other furnishings – remember the idea is to keep things uncluttered!
2. Textures Create Vibrancy
While some people like a Scandinavian-themed home, they may not necessarily be big fans of having an endless space of white or other monochrome colours.
To break the monotony, textured surfaces are an excellent choice and addition to any room. In this element, get creative and add cosy throws, shag rugs or knitted blankets on sofas, bricked designs to walls and even knitted chairs on floors. With warm textures, they help to characterise a space without going against the simplistic philosophy of Scandinavian designs.
When other themed pieces of furniture are present in the room, warm textures help to also integrate them seamlessly with one another. However, be mindful not to go overboard as multiple textures may disrupt the clean look of Scandinavian.
You can of course introduce brighter/bolder colours, rather than adhere to the recommended earthy and muted tones. For this 3-bedder condominium at Bukit Timah, the owners decided to go for bolder colours such as pink and turquoise through items like an art piece and a carpet. Once again, it’s all about carefully choosing colours that can contrast nicely but not appear too jarring. When in doubt, pastel colours usually work fine.
3. Muted Colours Define Space
Scandinavian colours are often defined by neutral and monochromatic tones. The key is to embrace colours that are deeply rooted in nature, to create softness and light around your home. For instance, colours such as black, tan, green, beige and white are a common sight in many Scandinavian homes. The lightness in tones helps to elevate a home and create the perception of having more space – an element critical for smaller homes.
But if you’re feeling adventurous, introduce brighter and bolder pops of colours which serve as beautiful accents in a home. Tiffany green, blush pinks and grey blues are popular additions, and they help a space to stay in character with the paler nature of Scandinavian.
4. Clutter-Free Spaces
Another way that you can incorporate elements of the Scandinavian look in your home would be to minimise the number of moving parts when it comes to furniture so you can have clutter-free spaces.
Having an organised home is essential for any Scandinavian design. Common household items and objects with similar colours or functionality are often arranged neatly within the same area of a home. Decoratives are also reduced excessively and unimportant objects are stored in areas that are out of sight. Storage solutions such as racks and modular cabinets help you to also store all your belongings and devoid your space of clutter.
For instance, instead of having a standalone study table, you can instead opt for a table that is integrated with the wall, as seen above. Of course, one big trade-off of doing so is that you won’t be able to change the layout of the room so easily, since the table is essentially “fixed” to the wall. However, in terms of aesthetics, having a singular piece as part of the wall does contribute to the overall uncluttered and minimalist look of the theme.
Look for opportunities to incorporate cupboards (both big and small) and multi-layered shelves to keep things organised as well. Through an organised structure, your home will become much neater and bigger due to the vacant spaces available.
5. Try something other than white
If white comes across as being too ethereal, why not pick another main colour such as a light shade of brown?
Yes yes, you might think this to be blasphemous to the Scandinavian design. Even though having a minimalist white look is something purists will go for, there is no stopping you from deviating slightly, whilst still retaining the spirit of the design style.
Sometimes having an all-white home can come across as being a bit cold and void. To introduce more warmth into the house, instead opt for wooden tones and warm lighting whilst still retaining aspects like clean edges. By doing so, you will create a more welcoming vibe to your home whilst still ensuring that it is uncluttered to give off a calming feel to the place.
6. Being in Touch with Nature
Scandinavian homes are marked by warm and woody tones alike. With a natural and neutral colour palette, they are featured heavily in Scandinavian designs and can easily create an accent in any room without the need for bright colours. Other common places in many homes such as shelves, door handles and floor cabinets also take inspiration from wooden Nordic homeware pieces to spruce up a space.
To blend furniture seamlessly, house plants are the perfect solution for this. The lush greenery and flora brighten any room without disrupting the Scandinavian colour palette. In particular, vine and succulent plants are great for rejuvenating any space with freshness and the perfect representation of a botanical Scandinavian home.
How to Incorporate Scandinavian Design Elements into Your Homes?
With the key elements of Scandinavian design in mind, every room can be made differently and creatively. Combine elements, colours, and characteristics to define each space. Here are some of our favourite Scandinavian interior looks, and perhaps you can find some inspiration for your home too.
The living room is often described as the heart of a home. Open the room with good use of light colours and natural light. While there is never a lack of light in sunny Singapore, you can add artificial light if you live in a space with lesser lighting. However, stick to simple designs such as pendant lamps or ceiling fans with lights.
While reflecting Scandinavian elements in your living space, add on home accessories such as textured pillows, rugs and curtains to create contrast and show off your aesthetics. You can also aptly hang a few photos and indoor plants to highlight fun and greenery in your space.
For your walls, keep them sleek with clean lines and warm tones. You can also pair your wooden floors with hints of darker wood without fully darkening the space.
For more living room interior design ideas, we have compiled a list of our top designs by Swiss Interior.
A Scandinavian kitchen should be kept functional yet visually pleasing. Wood is your best friend here and the most flexible material to opt for. Choose wood in your countertops, cabinets and even in your cooking utensils. You can even have wooden bowls, plates and chopping boards to complement the entire earthy atmosphere. While adding all your kitchen essentials, make sure to keep your counters clutter-free.
Match your walls with wooden furniture by selecting clean white designs. Add in some textures and details such as wood finishings or even marble tiles for an extra visual appeal. For a touch of nature, decorate your counters with potted plants. For an even larger space, adopt an open kitchen concept with swing doors or an island counter.
View our article on our top 5 kitchen interior designs for more inspiration.
As a place for a good night’s rest, your bedroom should always be kept cosy and intimate. For the main colours of your walls and floors, opt for lighter and neutral colours in shades of white and grey to create a soft and soothing environment.
In terms of furniture, white or wooden accents should be used for extra lightness. For instance, a sleek bedsheet provides a clean look to your room while wooden and angular bedroom legs give it an earthy touch. You can also decorate your bed with a warm fur blanket and a candle scent by the bedside. To top off everything, keep your bedroom lights in a warm tone to make your room cosy and inviting.
While the bathrooms may not be the centrepiece of your home, keep it in line with the Scandinavian theme through simplicity. For instance, line up your walls with neat white tiles. For a Nordic-inspired option, opt for a grey tile instead to create an accent.
Decorate your mirrors and sink creatively with plants and flowers to bring life into your bathroom. You can even have faux wood planks pasted on your walls to mimic a natural wood accent wall.
A Scandinavian home can be an easy feat with the right elements and focus on simplicity, minimalism and functionality. If you’re interested in more design ideas, check out some of our other interior design articles here:
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