Scandinavian design—an aesthetic marked by minimalism and functionality—has been influential since its inception in the early 20th century, but design ideas are still coming out the Nordic region to this day. Here's what's trending in the world of Scandinavian furniture, decor, and interiors.
Americans are known for perpetually chasing after a "balanced" lifestyle — but the Swedes just do it. Author of , Niki Brantmark (also the brains behind ) knows a thing or two about balance. As described in the title, lagom means finding just the right amount, which is a beautifully Scandinavian approach to life and design. She predicts it will make its way from our daily schedules to our bedrooms, where "conscious buying and slow design" will take center stage.
"My absolute favorite Scandinavian decor trend is taking what would normally be a boring storage piece, and making it a design focal point in your home," says Anna Decilveo, merchandiser at Swedish-founded company Tictail. "The shelf or basket you would've likely hid in your closet is, instead, a work of art in itself. We're already seeing so much of this from emerging Swedish brands on ." From to , now every facet of your home can be Scandinavian-level chic.
This three-legged garment rack is heavy on both form and function thanks to a sturdy design and a combination of sharp angles and smooth curves.
$149, West Elm
Scandinavia's favorite accent color? Clearly, it's blue — a bright blue that stands out brilliantly against all-white interiors, like in this belonging to industrial designer Josefine Bentzen. Let's just say, the monochromatic phase is over.
A jewel-toned blue rug with cream leaf-shaped accents brings in classic Scandi-style nature motifs while still keeping your look modern.
$10,000, ABC Carpet & Home
There's something about a vibrant, patterned blue rug that brings a space to life. This wool design that was made in India can add warmth to any room—Scandi style, of course.
Starting from $59, One Kings Lane
We're seeing a major transition to worn leather pieces in Nordic interiors, like these leather-backed wooden chairs in Swedish stylist 's home at . They're rustic without looking too antique — and look great with a sheepskin blanket tossed over their back. We're thinking this might be a Swedish play on the current American mid-century modern obsession.
The buckled straps of this sling-style chair highlight the buttery softness of the leather.
Starting from $1,496, Restoration Hardware
Feather motifs have caught on a little here in the States, but we're excited to see a full-blown feather epidemic going on in Sweden, as seen in this .
Whether you're adding them to your tablescape or working feather patterns into your wallpaper or bedding, Scandinavians are all about adding a nature-inspired element to every space. (Just make sure to go with faux-feathers, okay?)
The curved brass feather makes for a perfect spot to hang coats, aprons, or dishtowels.
Use this cast iron feather accessory to add visual interest to a wall or to simply corral your items in style.
$42, Joss and Main
The black-and-white aesthetic has been done in every corner of Scandinavia — which is why we're so excited to see grey walls making a comeback. They provide the same neutral, monochromatic appeal, but dial it back a few notches, as seen in a home from Swedish real estate company .
The subtle weave of grey shades gives some depth to this easy-to-apply removable wallpaper.
$29.90 fo 27 sq. ft., Target
If you prefer wall treatments with just a little more oomph, consider classic grey and white striped removable wallpaper.
$79, West Elm
"In a time when we're feeling constantly connected through technology and social media, wouldn't it be nice to have a personal sanctuary in which to switch off?" says Brantmark. Creating a highly-personalized space that is warm and welcoming, without the distractions of phones, televisions, or computers is important in counteracting busy day-to-day life and focusing on the heart of design.
"Bedrooms will become device-free and made up of a palette of soothing greys and milky whites, which combine with natural textures such as soft linen, cozy sheepskins, chunky knit blankets and warm rustic wood for your very own oasis of calm," she says.
The focus on Scandinavian design usually revolves around Sweden, but Finland is catching up in a big way. One of the , the Finns are doing something right. It could be their deep connection to the outdoors, their tasty but simplistic diets, or if you ask us, it definitely has something to do with "cottage culture."
Helsinki-based designer Linda Bergroth created the pop-up hotel (meaning "home" in Finnish) to provide "an immersive experience into Finnish hospitality and cottage culture," she said in a statement. This means communal eating and living spaces, innolux lamps that simulate natural daylight, and minimalistic tableware. "Instead of well-known design products, I think we should highlight the Finnish ways of sharing," said Bergroth.
There's an ethereal feel to these giant paper lanterns, both an interpretation of Asian-inspired light fixtures and a sideways take on a traditional chandelier. In calligrapher 's home, as seen on , four huge lanterns hang over her kitchen table, creating a whimsical overhead installation.
This bubble-shaped pendant light brights a soft, diffuse glow that's like candlelight with the volume turned up (aka very hygge.)
Starting from $395, Design Within Reach
There's something so serene about slatted walls, like those at the ; like you're hiding away in a cabin or about to spend the most relaxing hour in the sauna.
Not up for cladding your walls? A sleek slatted screen can add a similarly spa-like effect without the renovation.
What kid wouldn't want to fall asleep under these cute, wood-stick tents? Here, Finnish interior designer created a monochrome bed complete with an adorable tented canopy, as seen in . This trend has already started popping up in the U.S., like in Lucy Liu's son Rockwell's playroom. Kids around the world will be pretty excited about this one.
A cozy play tent is perfect for little ones' sleepovers or as a fun, low-to-the-ground option for toddlers moving to a big kids bed.
Starting from $193, Etsy
The best benefit of these super-sized Helvetica calendars? You'll always know the date. Why are we all sticking to our itty-bitty agendas and iPhone calendars when we could have this hanging on our wall? Interior design inspiration site makes an argument that massive monthly calendars are the home accessory on the rise.
Instead of tucking away your calendar, place a big graphic version like this on the wall like a modernist art piece.
$20, Need Supply Co.
It's no surprise the Swedes turn towards monochrome artwork, like in this , considering the rest of their house tends to stay in the realm of black and white. Not that America will ever go strictly minimalist (we're too obsessed with antiques and collecting, well, everything), but we'd love to see this simple, graphic artwork interspersed amongst colorful rooms. Layer them for a casual, but stylish effect.
A continuous-line piece gives plenty of personality without having to worry about clashing colors.
Starting from $48, Society6
Blogger used tape (black, of course) to hang up this poster in her kitchen. It's perfect: Non-permanent, so you can change up your artwork frequently, and still graphic enough to make a statement. The Scandis are all about their chic DIY projects, and we expect the U.S. will be soon, too!
After years of chevron, we're eager for stripes to make a comeback — especially if they're simple and black-and-white, like this H&M Home pillow seen in artist 's Norwegian home.
Avoid the whole nautical look by avoiding navy blue, and keeping the rest of your decor as contemporary as possible.
For a softer look, opt for stripes with an organic, uneven texture that wards off fussiness.