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What does one think of when asked about Scandinavian style and design? Ikea? This is probably the most well known brand hailing from the region and it originates from Sweden. Nevertheless there’s much more to the style and design of the region to be found in neighbouring Norway, Denmark and Finland. The whole region is teeming full of designers and innovators and is now renowned internationally. So what’s the big secret behind the success?

One of the great things about the Scandinavian style and design is its combination to be simple yet functional. Trying to be flashy gets you nowhere. Scandinavians don’t want something fussy- they want something that works.

Another feature of the style reverts back to the harsh conditions of the region. Due to long and cold winters, homes were typically designed to let in as much light as possible. White washed walls, wooden plank floors and log wood at the ready for the fire are seen as typical of this region and a way to retain the warmth. It’s pretty much been a hit in the world of interior design due to its homely appeal and the idea of being ‘cosy’ with the family next to the warmth of the fireplace. It may be slightly archaic now, but a fur rug would not go amiss- anything from nature such as wood, fur as well as flora and fauna are nice additions to trying to achieve a more ‘scandi-look’.

Your local Ikea may be full of white and wooden furniture, but the Scandinavians themselves will attest that there’s more to their design than clinical whiteness and minimalism. Wooden furniture is always a classic, although a touch of paint with a splash of colour never goes a miss-  a pop of colour in the house is seen as a good thing. Take the designs of Finnish Marimekko– it pretty much goes against the typical image of the region’s whole image, as the prints call out in a ‘look at me!’ kind of fashion. Scandinavians always have a surprise up their sleeve. Their homes are simple and clean, yet at the same time colourful and welcoming. Accessories are a must in a home, as they give it that unique touch that a house is actually lived in rather than just a showroom.

All of these factors combined attribute to the popularity of style and design in Scandinavia. It’s an ever growing trend and one that is likely to stay around for a while.

Check out my Pinterest board with a few typical and not so typical designs from Scandinavia. One can only dream for such beautiful interiors!