In one of our blog articles, we discussed popular interior design styles out of which Scandinavian ranks one of the top positions. The minimalist style of Scandinavian design emerged during the 1930's within the five Nordic countries of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden. It promoted simplistic ways of living.

The minimalist philosophy emphasized clean lines and simple designs that were inspired by nature and climate to create the Nordic design.

It promoted beautiful designs and quality, sustainable products that were affordable and easily accessible to people from all walks of life.

Exhibitions showcasing Scandinavian design during the 1950s played an important role in the influence of these design principles in Europe and North America.

The Scandinavian interior design is characterized by minimalism, simplicity, and functionality. Belonging to the school of modernism, Scandinavian design is a design movement characterized by a focus on functionalism and simplicity.

It also includes the use of natural materials, such as leather, wood, and hemp. Furthermore, Scandinavian interior design is often influenced by a connection to nature, which combines natural shapes, abstraction, and the use of natural elements.  

When it comes to the use of furniture in Scandinavian design, clean lines should be evident. Tables, chairs, sofas, and the rest of the Scandinavian decor should have a modern touch with smooth and rounded edges.

Scandinavian design is also characterized by its innovative and functional use of space, so it’s common to see multi-leveled wall shelving in a Scandinavian living room.

These storage spaces are innovative and space-savvy and add visual interest to space.

The main characteristics of Scandinavian Design are: 


Wall to wall carpets never became popular in Scandinavian countries. Interiors typically have wooden floors, in light wood tones, in all rooms except the bathrooms. If rugs are used, they are usually limited to area rugs.

Interior Surfaces

Warm woods are often used on walls, ceilings, cabinetry, and furniture. Warm tones found in teak and oak are preferred.

If pine is used, it’s often grayed down with a special oil that reduces the yellow wood tones.

The Scandinavian design makes use of wooden elements not only in the flooring but also in the furniture and fixtures.

Thus, a Scandinavian house usually has wooden coffee tables and chairs for its furniture.

However, the recent trend in the Scandinavian style of decorating combines the use of metallic finishes and wooden elements.

For instance, copper sconces and brass pendants

Eco-Friendly Materials

Scandinavian design principles promote eco-friendly homes with organic, sustainable building materials for flooring, walls, siding and roofing.

Natural Light

A Scandinavian living room should have a more inviting space and this can be best achieved by allowing plenty of light to get in. In order not to block the light, window treatments must be kept to a bare minimum in Scandinavian design.

If you need to use window coverings for your Scandinavian decor, opt for light fabrics such as sheer curtains.

Furthermore, the reflection of lights through the sheer curtains at night can make your Scandinavian living room feel even more romantic.


White walls and cool blue and gray textiles are common. In some homes, brighter pops of color like yellow and orange are found in Marimekko fabrics and rugs.

There’s a particular color palette that’s associated with the Scandinavian decor and this includes the hues of grays, whites, browns, and blacks.

So when decorating a Scandinavian living room, focus on the use of these neutral colors in order to create a clean and soothing effect to your Scandinavian home design.


This minimalist style promotes the design philosophy “less is more.” Accessories are usually scaled back to create less clutter and fewer visual distractions.

However, to the minimalist interior colors are added with the use of accessories. At the same time, most countries in the Scandinavian region have climates with extremely cold temperatures.

Thus, the use of warm textiles is common for Scandinavian home decor. These textiles can come in the form of throws and carpets that are made from wool, sheepskins, or mohair.

Accessorizing with warm textiles is a great way to make a Scandinavian living room feel cozy and warm, especially during winter.


Most Scandinavian houses enjoy daylight in as little as seven hours a day. Thus, the manner in which lighting is used is very important in a Scandinavian interior design.

Lighting is considered a life source and the Scandinavian decor should have different forms of lighting to provide adequate illumination in the entire space.

Lighting also sets the mood in Scandinavian home design. Our designers recommend using modern lighting with an industrial design such as wall sconces and pendant lamps.

Candle lights and candelabras can make a Scandinavian living room feel warm, cozy and romantic.


Scandinavian winters are harsh, so most homes have large fireplaces to provide adequate heat. Fireplace designs are usually simple but often embellished with beautiful tiles.


The Scandinavian design doesn’t involve a whole lot of color, though if you’re looking to brighten up space without sacrificing the Scandinavian style, plants can do just the trick.

They bring an earthy, arboreal element to the already natural look, while adding a statement pop of color without feeling too in your face. in order to have a living element of color and beauty in your interior.

When it comes to this, consider decorating your Scandinavian living room with indoor plants and fresh flowers.

In the Scandinavian region, streets are often lined with sidewalk florists selling fresh flowers and tulips in every color.

Your Scandinavian design should, therefore, include floral elements and fresh flowers.

Originally Published: 22.05.2020