Home Interior Design Top 10 Tips for Adding Scandinavian Style to Your Home

Top 10 Tips for Adding Scandinavian Style to Your Home

March 12, 2017

Scandinavian living room with light wood floors and white walls - Top 10 tips for adding Scandinavian style to your home | Happy Grey Lucky

It’s no secret that I love Scandinavian style. Ever since our month-long road trip through Denmark, Sweden, and Norway in 2014, I’ve been obsessed with the light and minimalist style that is found so often in nordic homes. The use of muted colours, clean lines, and natural materials is perfect for a small home like ours to keep things airy and uncluttered. Below I’ve listed the top 10 tips for adding Scandinavian style to your own home.

Scandinavian interior with light wood floors and white walls - Top 10 tips for adding Scandinavian style to your home | Happy Grey Lucky
Scandinavian dining room with light wood floors and white walls - Top 10 tips for adding Scandinavian style to your home | Happy Grey Lucky

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[ 1 ] Light Wood Floors

Floor-to-floor carpeting just isn’t a thing in Scandinavian design. Hardwood floors, preferably light, are found everywhere but the bathroom. If you’ve got darker wood floors, you can lighten them up (without breaking the bank) by sanding them down and re-oiling them with a white floor oil. Rikke from That Nordic Feeling has a great tutorial on her blog. It’s a lengthy process (not sure I’d have the patience for it) but her floors are, far and away, my favourite wood floors that I’ve come across. Another option is white-washing. Mix water with paint in whatever concentration you like, depending on the look you’re going for. The more water you add, the more the underlying wood colour will show through.

Scandinavian living room with grey sofa - Top 10 tips for adding Scandinavian style to your home | Happy Grey LuckyScandinavian dining room with light wood floors and white walls - Top 10 tips for adding Scandinavian style to your home | Happy Grey Lucky

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[ 2 ] White Walls

Another pretty universal feature of Scandinavian interior design is white walls. White walls lend themselves well to the general minimalist look that is so popular in Scandinavian design, and they make for a great canvas on which to add a wall collage, some open wall shelving, or to make a statement wall lamp pop out. They also brighten up the space and allow as much natural light to fill your home, which is something the Scandinavians are very conscious about during the long, dark winter months.

Scandinavian living room with white walls and map wall art - Top 10 tips for adding Scandinavian style to your home | Happy Grey LuckyScandinavian interior with neutral and pastel colors - Top 10 tips for adding Scandinavian style to your home | Happy Grey Lucky

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[ 3 ] Neutral Colours

Neutrals are your friend. The main colours you’ll see in Scandinavian interiors are white, beige, light grey, and pale pastels, especially dusty pinks. Stick with only one or two statement colour(s) and leave the rest monochromatic.

Scandinavian interiors with natural materials - Top 10 tips for adding Scandinavian style to your home | Happy Grey Lucky
Scandinavian interiors with natural materials - Top 10 tips for adding Scandinavian style to your home | Happy Grey Lucky

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[ 4 ] Mix-and-Match Natural Materials

Add texture by combined various natural materials within your home. Don’t be afraid to mix different woods, but keep them pale for the most part (mid-century modern teak being the exception). Add some wicker, rattan, seagrass, hemp, (faux) leather, brass, copper, and so on and so forth. And don’t forget to add a little bit of greenery, whether it’s a small potted plant or a few stems thrown into a glass jar.

Scandinavian interior lighting with pendant lamps and hanging lightbulbs - Top 10 tips for adding Scandinavian style to your home | Happy Grey Lucky
Scandinavian living room with large pendant lamp - Top 10 tips for adding Scandinavian style to your home | Happy Grey Lucky

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[ 5 ] Lighting

Nordic countries have long, dark winter months so it comes as no surprise that they use a lot of light in their homes. Scandinavians favour hanging lamps (pendants, lightbulbs) over ceiling spotlights and like to scatter various lamps and candles around the room to help diffuse the light.

Scandinavian interiors with mix-and-match textiles - Top 10 tips for adding Scandinavian style to your home | Happy Grey Lucky
Scandinavian living room textiles - Top 10 tips for adding Scandinavian style to your home | Happy Grey Lucky

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[ 6 ] Textiles

Play with textures. Mix-and-match different textiles, the more the merrier. A thick wool throw, linen pillows, (faux) sheepskin draped over the sofa, or a Moroccan trellis area rug are all popular options.

Scandinavian interiors with mid-century modern pieces - Top 10 tips for adding Scandinavian style to your home | Happy Grey Lucky
Scandinavian living room with neutral and pastel colors - Top 10 tips for adding Scandinavian style to your home | Happy Grey Lucky

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[ 7 ] Mid-Century Modern Furniture

Mid-century modern designs are found everywhere in Scandinavian homes. Arne Jacobsen, Charles and Ray Eames, Hans Wegner, and George Nelson are some of the famous mid-century designers whose pieces fit perfectly into modern, nordic interiors. If designer pieces are out of your budget, Ikea has a great collection of mid-century modern inspired pieces, including their Stockholm series as well as the Ekenäset  and Kläppa armchairs, to name a few. (Although the latter two unfortunately aren’t available in North America.)

Scandinavian living room fireplace, black and white - Top 10 tips for adding Scandinavian style to your home | Happy Grey Lucky
Minimalist Scandinavian interior - Top 10 tips for adding Scandinavian style to your home | Happy Grey Lucky

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[ 8 ] Simplicity

Keep accessories to a minimum! Think clean, minimalist here. When in doubt, less is always better. Don’t be afraid to keep an entire wall bare!

Scandinavian living room with grey sofa - Top 10 tips for adding Scandinavian style to your home | Happy Grey Lucky
Scandinavian living room with grey sofa - Top 10 tips for adding Scandinavian style to your home | Happy Grey Lucky

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[ 9 ] Grey Sofa

If there is one piece of furniture almost guaranteed to be found in Scandinavian homes, it’s the grey sofa. One of the most popular budget-friendly grey sofas is the Ikea Karlstad. Swap out the legs for round tapered ones to give it a little something extra.

Scandinavian minimalist, white kitchen - Top 10 tips for adding Scandinavian style to your home | Happy Grey Lucky
Scandinavian minimalist, white kitchen - Top 10 tips for adding Scandinavian style to your home | Happy Grey Lucky

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[ 10 ] Open, minimalist kitchen 

Scandinavians love an all-white open-concept kitchen. Use only lower cabinets and add some open shelving to store all your pretty things. For your countertop, skip the marble and go with wood, concrete, stainless steel, or pure white quartz for a truly minimalist look.

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5 comments

Mia March 13, 2017 at 8:37 am

Wow such beautiful interiors! And great tips, Thanks! xo

Reply
Sina March 14, 2017 at 12:28 am

Glad you enjoyed the post! 🙂

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Crystal March 14, 2017 at 6:39 pm

Thank you absolutely loved this post!!!!(and wishing I purchased a grey couch instead of a brown one lol)

Reply
Sina March 15, 2017 at 6:08 pm

So happy you liked it! And lol I made my hubby agree to get rid of our beige sofa in our last apartment (even though there was nothing wrong with it and it was really comfy) just so I could have a more Scandinavian interior. Oh and we painted all of our off-white walls pure white (poor guy, lol)

Reply
Meghan March 24, 2017 at 1:01 pm

Oh my, so many pretty interiors in one space. love them all

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