SCANDINAVIAN STYLE Design, Furniture and Decor Guide 

"What is scandinavian style?" When we ask, images of clean, minimal, simple and functional elegance appear in our minds. Today, we will include Scandinavian designs with the examples, ring the sum of Norwegian, Swedish and Danish design. If the most basic thing that makes a house home is peace, the basic principle of Scandinavian interior design is to ensure that you live in a peaceful environment.

What are the features of the warming rooms in the cold countries of the North, why Scandinavian decor is so popular today, how to create the effect of Scandinavian minimalism in homes, we wrote them all. Now it's time to relax!

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Characteristics of Scandinavian Design and Historical Background of the Style 

Art Nouveau and Art Deco, which emerged after the First World War, represented the show, while everything changed after the Second World War. How Art Nouveau and Art Deco developed, what they represent, you can read.

  • After World War II, modernism changed shape. Social status and the search for views in Europe in the 20th century; it found itself in decoration, design and art with new expressions. The concept of decoration that is accessible to everyone, affordable, functional and far from gaudy has started to settle more and more. In addition, the fact that Scandinavian nations came together after World War II had an important role in determining the style. Therefore Scandinavian style; It is also known as Nordic design, Swedish design, Danish style decor.
  • Scandinavian is a combination of beauty, simplicity and functionality in decor. The clean lines of Bauhaus that bring art to error have influenced Scandinavian furniture and decor understanding.
  • Scandinavian modern style, we can say in the early 1940s. But its recognition was in the early 1950s. Mid-Century has been influential in the popularization of Scandinavian furniture and interior design in terms of the emergence of modern style, glorifying regular and simple spaces.
  • We can say that Scandinavian furniture and home decoration created its first big sensation with Triennale di Milano, a popular design exhibition in Milan. Scandinavian style furniture, decoration products and glassware attracted great attention.
  • Scandinavian style was recognized in 1951 by awarding Frederik Lunning, an importer of Danish designs. Lunning Prize also takes its name from Frederik Lunning.
  • After the establishment of the award, Elizabeth Gordon, the editor of House Beautiful, cited Scandinavian style as an alternative to Nazi-era fascism. Scandinavian design; he was highly praised for being a style of warm, friendly, home and family focused, accessible, democratic, modern understanding.
  • The Scandinavian style is important for its history at the Stockholm Exhibition in 1930 and the Arts of Denmark Exhibition, which was held in New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Arts with the participation of the Danish Royal couple in 1960.
  • Between 1954 and 1957, Scandinavian decor experienced its most popular days worldwide, from the USA to Canada.
  • Scandinavian culture focuses on “need”. The cold and challenging nature of the Scandinavian countries and the transition to late industry are the main reasons for focusing on this need at the roots. Between the 2 world wars, serial machine production was not dominant in the Scandinavian countries as in the USA. Scandinavian countries established schools and institutions to combine handicrafts with commercial production after World War II. This is why they focus on preserving craft cultures and creating living spaces that meet their needs; It's not splendor, beauty, or decoration.
  • Longing sunshine and long winters led to the birth of many elements that will create a sense of warmth in Scandinavian interior design. Like knitted blankets, large unadorned windows, natural wood surfaces that reflect light as it is, green plants that invite the yearning nature to homes.
  • The Swedish word “lagom” (It is not a lot or a little. A word meaning “the right amount”) explains the minimalism of the Scandinavian style.
  • Hospitality and warm family atmosphere are very important in Scandinavian folklore. “Hygge”, a Danish dream, is one of the main factors in the formation of the Scandinavian style. We can summarize it as a peaceful life with happy, healthy and warm communication with your loved ones.
  • In Nordic design, quality is superior to size, simplicity is complex.
  • “Why is scandinavian design so popular?” The answer to the question is actually very simple: Scandinavian decor is a representative of timeless elegance. Master craftsmanship, durable products, simplicity, simplicity and functionality are criteria that apply to both today and the future. Scandinavian culture teaches us a lot both aesthetically and philosophically in the present day, when consumption has come to the madness dimension.

Scandinavian Furniture Characteristics

  • When talking about Scandinavian design furniture, the first thing that comes to mind is raw wood. The vast forests of the North have entered the houses with the use of natural wood in Nordic and Swedis furniture.
  • Since respect for nature is embedded in the Scandinavian culture, wood is also not painted or varnished. It is used in its raw form as much as possible.
  • In Scandinavian style furniture, light woods such as beech, ash, mahogany, oak, birch, pine, teak and spruce are generally used.
  • Scandinavian chairs, tables, coffee tables, cabinets and sofas have straight geometric lines.
  • Stressless recliners cheer up homes as a great modern Scandinavian furniture that creates comfort.
  • Wicker and rattan are the most preferred complementary materials for Scandinavian furniture.
  • Table and chair legs are generally thin cone tubular. Metal legs can also be used in wooden furniture.
  • Low and long buffets are one of the most typical Scandinavian style furniture. Cabinet handles are usually U-shaped metal.

Dual-purpose furniture is one of the important features of Scandinavian furniture. Being functional is not luxurious in Scandinavian decoration; need. Although not so much today, furniture was made for multi-purpose purposes because the houses were small. One of the most typical examples is coffee table with storage, a pouf with storage space.

What is Danish Modern Furniture?

This definition, which is also known as modern Scandinavian furniture, has the characteristic features of Scandinavian furniture design; The furniture of famous designers such as Arne Jacobsen, Børge Mogensen, Hans Wegner, Finn Juhl are synonymous with style. In other words, the furniture, where quality materials are combined with clean lines and practical use, overlap with today's minimal furniture design approach. Such a term is used because of the hometown of famous furniture designers who give the most iconic examples. When we say Swedish furniture, we mean the same thing. As a result, they all belong to the Scandinavian style. 

Scandinavian Lighting Elements

  • Light is vital for Scandinavian home decor. Long winter season and dark weather make light the most important factor in Scandinavian rooms. Therefore, the use of layered lighting appears. Scandinavian pendant lights, floor lamps, table lamps, candles are often used. Remember, even a tiny candle light is very effective in creating a warm and peaceful atmosphere in the environment.
  • Scandinavian chandelier usually has sharp conical forms. Wood is also seen in table lamps and floor lamps.

Most Popular Scandinavian Fabrics


  • Scandinavian textiles, of course, should be natural. The most popular fabrics used in Scandinavian home decoration are:
  • Linen
  • Cotton
  • Sheepskin rug
  • Fur
  • Pure wool
  • Bright suede
  • Wicker

What are Scandinavian Colors?

Neutral colors are the determining factors of Scandinavian interior design. Bright colors reflecting light, quiet tones, peaceful and calm colors are indispensable for Nordic design home. “Beige aesthetics” is exactly an expression that can be used for this style. The main colors that enter the Scandinavian color palette are:

  • White
  • Beige
  • Light grey
  • Mint green
  • Light blue
  • Light rose pink
  • Pastel yellow

Make sure to use all the characteristic features of the Scandinavian style for Nordic inspired living room. Neutral colors, bright and simple environment, wooden Scandinavian floor should be your indispensable. Similar items, color palette and principles apply for Scandinavian dining room. Apart from these, what you can add for Scandinavian inspired living room, here are our suggestions:

  • Warm textiles (Coarse knit Scandinavian blanket, wool throws, sheepskin or fur Scandinavian rug etc.)
  • Pillows with geometric print pattern
  • Stressless chair / recliners
  • Wooden coffee table with storage
  • Transparent thin tulle curtains that will not block the light
  • Convertible couch
  • Sleeper sofa / sectional sofas
  • Extension dining table
  • Scandinavian daybed
  • Scandinavian lounge chairs
  • Scandinavian end tables
  • Metal and wood blended minimal pendants for modern Scandinavian decor
  • Plain floor lamps,
  • Lots of green potted plants
  • Dry branch and vase combination
  • Scandinavian art prints in minimal, monochrome colors, geometric patterns
  • An old fireplace
  • Shelves in the same color as wood or wall
  • Heated floor tiles (Wow!)
  • Scandinavian bedroom design is one of the most restful interior design styles where you will have a peaceful sleep!
  • White is the best color for Scandinavian bedding
  • Bed frame made of wooden pallets or black iron wrought 
  • Wooden canopy bed frame
  • Sliding wardrobe
  • Rustic stools or wicker baskets as bedside tables
  • Paper chandelier
  • Knit blanket
  • Copper Scandinavian pendant light
  • Bedding without pattern in white or pastel tones
  • Black and white modern Scandinavian artwork
  • Wood veneer on both the floor and the ceiling
  • Fur carpet
  • Pillow stacks
  • Scandinavian candle holder, unscented candles
  • Scandinavian dinnerware
  • Green plants
  • Scandinavian drying cabinets
  • Hanging lights, floor lamps
  • White and black art prints
  • Wood table
  • Simple white Scandinavian shelves with light blue kitchen cabinets
  • Fine lined black and white tiles
  • Striped carpet
  • Rustic bar stools
  • Chalk kitchen board
  • Scandinavian kitchen witch (It is believed to purify from evil spirits according to Scandinavian folklore.)
  • White square tiles
  • Wooden drawer as kitchen cabinet
  • Wicker towel basket
  • Black accents
  • Green plants or giant pots hanging from the ceiling
  • Scandinavian shower curtain with geometric, watercolor or minimal nature pattern
  • Transparent shower cabin glass
  • Sink counter with storage space
  • Black frame window
  • Open shelving units
  • Pendant bulb
  • Jute rug
  • Scandinavian wallpapers with moisture-resistant tree leaves print or graphic animal designs for a minimal yet slightly mobile look.