Scandinavian style

Today we are talking about Scandinavian style, and what does it exactly mean. This topic is important for me right now, because I’m designing a space in this style with some industrial elements, so I really wanted to make sure I get everything about this style. And I thought, why not share this with you? 

Scandinavian style is very popular nowadays. It is simple, neutral, and it fits a lot of people’s aesthetics. You can’t really go wrong with this design, and it can also compliment a lot of other styles and look amazing together. I would totally mix it with industrial, minimal or rustic in a heartbeat.

Scandinavian style mixed with a little industrial

Rustic chairs and bins look amazing combined with the clear white Scandinavian look. photo: Shutterstock

So, what is exactly Scandinavian style?

This style focuses on simplicity and functionality. We can’t stop hearing about Hygge and Lagom, and it has a reason. Scandinavian style features a lot of white, clean lines, light wooden tones and a lot of textiles. Spaces with this style are open and fresh without too many accessories. But definitely more accessories, than minimalist style! Lighting is clear, and it prefers a lot of smaller lights and mood lighting, fairy lights instead of one big central fixture.

Fairy lights in Scandinavian living room

I love the mood fairy lights can give to the space. photo: Shutterstock

The space is very bright and uses a lot of natural lights, so if you are just buying a home or renting a new flat, try to look for one with large windows and glass surfaces.

Huge windows and bright room

Huge windows and bright spaces are key in this style. photo: Shutterstock

Scandinavian and minimalist style

Let’s clear what is the difference between minimalist and Scandinavian design. “Minimalist design” refers to the use of industrial materials and geometric forms in a flowing, open-concept space favoring white and black color schemes. It emphasizes simplicity and function in furniture and is said to be a bit „harsh and cold” sometimes. The Scandinavian design, however, uses a lot of pastel colors and warm textures and fabrics. It refers to the use of natural materials, pale colors, and minimalist shapes in open interiors that capitalize on what sunlight the wintry region actually does receive. A space can be both styles, but the main difference is that minimalist design often incorporates stainless steel, chrome, and lacquered plastics while Scandinavian design focuses on organic materials — i.e., hemp rugs, curved wooden chairs, and woven baskets.

Natural elements and neutral colors in a Scandinavian room

Natural elements and neutral colors in a Scandinavian room. photo: Shutterstock


Colors and textures

There are a lot of earthy and pastel tones rather than bold colors in this styled interior. You should keep the 60-30-10 rule in mindHere, white is the natural choice for your dominant shade. For your other two colors, think about using earthy shades like grays, tans, and browns. Bare in mind that your accent shade should be the boldest of them all. But here as “bold”, I mean choosing a nice pastel shade, like a light pink or a mint green, or a gold for example 🙂

Mood and ambience

This style is all about comfort, warmth, and coziness, that everyone can feel at home, even if they enter the space for the first time. Create a warm mood with a lot of candles, huge knit blankets, and shaggy rugs. Also layer a lot of throw pillows and add comfortable elements to the room.

Scandinavian design is also in connection with a slow lifestyle. Nothing fussy or busy, everything is calm and comfy. Scandinavian people enjoy long breakfasts and coffee breaks, cooking together with friends on the weekends. They also love nature, and bringing nature into their homes. They also wear comfy knitted jumpers and huge socks, and they like to curl up on the sofa covered with a huge knit blanket sipping on mulled wine or a cup of tea.

This photo represents the Scandinavian lifestyle perfectly

This photo represents the Scandinavian lifestyle perfectly. photo: Shutterstock

You can enjoy a nice long cooking and baking weekend afternoon with friends in this Scandinavian style kitchen.

You can enjoy a nice long cooking and baking weekend afternoon with friends in this Scandinavian style kitchen. photo: Shutterstock


Scandinavian decor is very simple. A nice gallery wall can look amazing, and you don’t need to have perfect measurements, just do it the way you like it. It also features a lot of smaller decor pieces, like vases, books, throw pillows and layered rugs. And one of the most important things are plants. They can really make you feel like you are outside in nature.

A simple and gorgeous gallery wall can represent Scandinavian style perfectly

A simple and gorgeous gallery wall can represent Scandinavian style perfectly. photo: Shutterstock

Plants, white colors and throw pillows...all you need for the Scandinavian aesthetics

Plants, white colors and throw pillows…all you need for the Scandinavian aesthetics. photo: Shutterstock

Note: We made a quiz for you, to get to know your personal interior design style in just 3 minutes! If you complete the quiz, you will be able to personalize 2018 trends for yourself 🙂

Style personality quiz for interior design fans


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About the Author: Agnes Czedula

Hi, my name is Agnes Czedula founder and creative director of Style Fragments! I am an interior designer, stylist and decorator. I’m in love with everything in connection with style and design and my heart belongs to interior design and styling. I’m a perfectionist in my work and my personal life too, while trying to allow myself to have fun and not take myself too seriously. I find that most people struggle to find the right items for their home and to mix different items in order to get to look they see in a magazine or on a blog. My mission is to make you more confident styling your home and to mix styles with one another! I want you to be confident walking into a store and choose the right pieces for your home.


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