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Technicolour Spaces

Tips & Tricks For Scandinavian Interiors

Vamvakas Anastassis

The love that 3d artists have for Scandinavian design is obvious. For this reason we created an article in order to help you by giving some tips and guidelines concerning the Scandinavian interior design style. Enjoy it!

Scandinavian Interior by Habbaba Sam



A multitude of factors have played a crucial role in the creation and development of Scandinavian design, amongst which nature, climate, national character and traditions are the most predominant. Declaring itself and taking the world by storm after the 1947 edition of the Triennale di Milano, a popular design exhibition in the Italian city of Milan, Scandinavian design has since remained faithful to its main features of plentiful light, warmth and form adhering to functionality. The harsh environmental conditions of Nordic Europe, the rational and restrained character of the inhabitants and the availability of stocks of natural resources shaped the design sensibilities of Scandinavian craftspeople and designers, resulting in the creation of spaces suffused with light, airiness and a feeling of closeness to nature.

Tales from the North by Florescu Irinel Ramona.


It is worth observing how very differently Scandinavian trends evolved from design in the rest of Europe, which generally favoured opulent and highly ornate décor, inspired by the luxurious lifestyles of the aristocracy and royalty. By contrast, the emerging Scandinavian design sensibility, quite like the people, was egalitarian, aiming to appeal to the masses rather than just the elite, through products that were accessible and affordable. The concept of “beautiful things that make your life better” was highly regarded. 

Although its popularity dwindled somehow in the 1980s, the reinterpretation of Scandinavian style in the following decade brought it once again into the limelight. During the 1990s, designers in Scandinavian countries took it upon themselves to treat each object they designed for use in décor as an individual unit of design, thus creating once again unique and timeless statement pieces, faithful to the tradition of the big Scandinavian furniture designers of the beginnings of the 20th century. 



Guiding Principles.


Scandinavian design encapsulates the very essence of the motto “less is more” coined by poet Robert Browning in the 19th century. Therefore it wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that minimalism could be a one-word definition of Scandinavian interior design.  


  • Clean lines 

Prioritizing function without sacrificing aesthetics lies at the heart of modern Scandinavian design. World-renowned Scandinavian furniture pieces feature simple, clean lines and soft curves that exude sophisticated elegance but do not compromise on comfort. A celebrated example is the Arne Jacobsen series 7 chair that has made its way into millions of interiors around the world. Simple yet surprisingly sturdy, its delicate lines lend it timeless appeal, while its elegant form which takes up very little visual space make it ideal for compact living or work spaces. 



  • Light

Lack of sunlight in Nordic countries influenced the design of window openings enormously. Natural light is amplified by any means possible, be it generously proportioned windows, or minimal presence of window treatments. Curtains are kept sheer or translucent when they exist. Mirrors are used strategically with the dual purpose of visually expanding space and reflecting any ambient light. Neutral, light-reflecting colour palettes are widely used.

Scandinavian interior by Maciulis Matas.


Electric fixtures are extremely simple in design, in an effort to avoid adding visual clutter to the space. The distribution of artificial light sources is astutely executed, with different sizes, styles and shapes of fixtures discreetly positioned in a multitude of nooks and crannies around the space. Candle light is still quite commonly used, to add softness to an otherwise frugal and austere design through the flickering candle flames.   

Scandinavian Interior by Habbaba Sam.


  • Neutral colour

Bright whites as well as serene, muted neutrals dominate Scandinavian interiors, amplifying visual space and exuding comfort and airiness even on a dark, dreary day. Light-shaded walls, cabinetry, trim and worktops recede visually and help create a minimalistic yet warm and comfortable feeling. Vibrancy and vitality are not strangers to a Scandinavian interior though: accent pieces in bright hues add a high-key note to the space, in the way of pottery, rugs, scatter cushions and of course art. White surroundings make sure that these pieces stand out even more dramatically and capitalize on their restrained use.

Makleri Fireplaces by Mahajan Sachin.


  • Natural elements

Nature is celebrated in every inch of the interior, proving that Scandinavians are fervent lovers of the outdoors. Natural wood is a key element of Scandinavian interior design, being the preferred choice of flooring. Pine, beech and ash are by far the most used materials, with the stains and varnishes generally kept light, in order to contribute to an overall feeling of airiness. Potted plants are also very common in interior design, bringing the outdoors within the home in an unparalleled way. 

Apartment - Scandinavian by Do Ngoc Bau.


  • Textiles

Textiles are sparingly used in order to maximize the impact of their presence. Colourful rugs rest on pristine white wood floors, serving as anchors defining a lounging area, while a couple of scatter cushions with geometrical prints of bold chevrons or stripes bring a light-coloured love seat to life. Knitted throws draped over easy chairs, sheer drapes on the windows and patterned place mats and napkins on the dining table, all make for an image of joy, comfort and simplicity. Natural fabrics such as cotton, wool and linen prevail over synthetics and blends. 

Scandinavian Interior by Habbaba Sam.


Tips for creating a genuine Scandinavian interior.


  1. Floors.
    Avoid fitted carpeting at all costs. All truly Scandinavian interiors will have a wooden, preferably light-coloured floor in all rooms except the bathrooms.

    Apartment - Scandinavian by Do Ngoc Bau.

  2. Colour.
    Creams, whites and greys work on all levels. The Scandinavian love of bleached woods and all things natural allude to the feeling of seaside retreats and beach houses. Sand and linen colour palettes throughout the typically open plan spaces create coziness and a feeling of relaxation. Add accents in gingham greens, sky blues and clay reds. 

  3. Textures and pattern.
    When working with a basic colour palette or neutrals, introducing texture will ensure the scheme does not become bland or boring. Work with a variety of finishes and materials, such as burnished metals, woods, cottons, linens and natural stones. Add geometric, gingham and floral patterns throughout in moderation.

    Tales from the North by Florescu Irinel Ramona.

  4. Put a fireplace in the corner.
    Unlike the rest of Europe, where fireplaces were usually the focal points in grand rooms, Scandinavian fireplaces are usually very simple columns, often beautifully tiled and placed in the corner of the room. 

    Makleri Fireplaces by Mahajan Sachin.

  5. Furniture.
    A Scandinavian interior would never fully come to life without the addition of a number of world-renowned pieces of furniture that have made their mark on the international design world. There is a multitude of incredible pieces from several manufacturers, ranging from high end, mid-century period designers such as Hans Wegner, Alvar Aalto and Arne Jacobsen, whose furniture are as fresh and relevant today as ever, down to more cost-effective but still charming options.

    Pure by Mahajan Sachin.



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