Increasingly great amount of people focus their attention on the Scandinavian stylistics in planning the repair of the private house or apartment. Universality, simplicity, practicability and beauty of the style of Scandinavian countries attracts your attention also by its accessibility with regard to the designer solution. The advantage of using the Scandinavian state’s motives when arranging your house is that the owners of the apartments and private houses may cope with the basic tasks themselves.
Unique features of the Scandinavian style
Despite its obvious uniqueness, the Scandinavian style is loved almost by everyone. And it’s hard to imagine a house owner who would not like to see his/her home arranged with such simplicity and practicability, lightness and modesty. But at the same time, the Scandinavian style strives to create a comfortable, beautiful and modern design of the apartment or e detached house.
Basic motives of Scandinavian style arrangement are as follows:
- the key task of creating the Scandinavian interior is providing maximum natural light to the premises. The very space may be small, but at the same time should have quite large windows. The meaningfulness of the natural light in the aesthetics of Scandinavian peoples cannot be overestimated ;
- active use of white in the premises finishing. The snow-white color of the ceiling practically in all cases is an analog color of walls – characteristic feature of arranging the space in Scandinavian style. Such approach ensures maximum light distribution in the premises – the sun rays reflected from the snow-white surfaces scatter around the whole room;
- the use of predominantly natural materials – wood for the finishing and furniture items production, ceramics and stone for finishing the surfaces in need of special protection, application of leather, fur and natural textile (cotton, linen) for decorative drapery. If you decide to use the artificial analogs on natural materials, they should ideally imitate the natural;
- the use of open planning when decorating most of the premises – canteen adjoining to the kitchen and quite frequently to the dining room, bedroom – to the study and sometimes to the library without any partitions. Such approach allows maximum preservation of space and ensures the light for all functional areas;
- the application of simple but functional furniture. Only convenient but at the same time modest design is a visiting card of Scandinavian stylistics;
- no sign of luxury and richness – key task of any interior element becomes its practical use. Even decorative items (which are rare in the Scandinavian interior) bear the functional loading;
- in the light premises there are one or two bright accents – this may be the furniture item or textile, large room plant or wall décor (colorful pictures, family photos in bright frames);
- and the last but not the least criterion of using the Scandinavian stylistics when arranging the Scandinavian design is that the interior should be the reflection of the owner’s character, should, first of all, serve his/her needs, reflect the owner’s view of beauty, comfort and esthetics.
Color palette – use the tricks of the light
Even the house owners most ignorant of the designer sphere know that the Scandinavian stylistics gravitates to the active use of white. The snow-white ceiling and walls are the visiting card of the North-European countries. Such finishing performs several important functions at once – visually extends the space, facilitates the distribution of sunlight and serves as an ideal background for placing the color accents. Practically any furniture looks successful against the white background, even the dull décor elements and room plants.
The use of white and black colors combination (dark-gray in some cases) with the wooden surfaces will help you making the ground for the Scandinavian interior. It is not necessary to break your head over the choice of shades and their harmonious combination – white and black colors suit ideally for creating the contrast design (surely, white color prevails, and black acts as a reasonable accent). The wooden surfaces perfectly dilute this contrast duet, brining the natural warmth into the premises atmosphere. Most frequently the light wood (pine, oak, ash tree) is used for finishing the floors and as a material for furniture – tables and chairs, book stacks and other storage systems.
Despite the total love of the Scandinavian style to the white color, creation of absolutely light premises in not a goal. We need the color accents for the eye, people of any age need to fix their eyes sometimes on some bright details, interior elements. One large furniture item will look contrasting and bright against the light background (sofa or chair) or a couple or small interior elements (curtains, bedspread, coffee table or the bed-side cabinet).
The examples of the interior arrangement in the Scandinavian style
For any house owner sitting room is the heart of the house, where the whole family gathers in the evenings and during the weekends the get-togethers with the friends and relatives take place. Surely, such space should be arranged with maximum comfort, convenience. However, it is important to preserve the interior practicability, simplicity in the use of the interior elements and cleaning easiness. The Scandinavian style perfectly combines all these qualities. At the same time, the design looks modern, remaining trendy for many years. The expenses for use of natural materials for finishing of premises and arrangement of furniture will be justified not only by the attractive appearance of the interior but also by its long life. If you become bored with the room appearance in a year or two – it is easy to change it with the help of accessories, décor. Having replaced just one picture on the wall or the cushions with more colorful, bright ones, you will radically change the perception of the whole sitting room.
In the premises arranged in the Scandinavian style, quite frequently you may see the window apertures, deprived of any drapery. Such choice is quite reasonable – to have maximum natural light at the premises, the sunrays should not meet any obstacles on their way, even the thinnest curtain lace as a window decoration element. If in the bedroom such designer technique may face a serious dissatisfaction of the owners, in the sitting room it is quite applicable also for the apartments of our compatriots.
The snow-white ceiling and walls, flooring represented by the parquet or boards, soft furniture with the natural covering (most frequently linen or cotton), light coffee tables or supports, a couple of room plants and the interior of comfortable and at the same time the modern sitting room is ready. The cushions or lighting appliances may be used as the accents – bright but simple by design floor lamps or desk lamps perfectly cope with their task, left alone the illuminating functions during the night time.
In order to arrange the home library at the sitting room in the Scandinavian style, it would be enough just to place the open book stack along one of the walls. The simplest and practical open shelves will be the best solution for arranging the books storage system. Will it be the stack made of wood or metal construction painted white – the Scandinavian style will welcome any integration.
Kitchen and dining room
The Scandinavian kitchen in most cases is already familiar with the change of white and black colors and the wooden surfaces. The combination of light finishing and wooden facades of the ready-made kitchen with the dark decorative elements or pattern of the ceramic tile on the splash back allows creating modern but at the same time comfortable and practical interior. In such kitchen space you will feel comfortable, you’ll have much light and enjoy the atmosphere and will not have to spend much time and efforts for cleaning. The principle of practicability and functionality, enclosed into the attractive look, could not have come at a better time for the kitchen – quite loaded from the point of view of the functions performed in any house.
The Scandinavian style suits perfectly the apartments with the standard or upscale planning. In a modern apartment the kitchen is most frequently arranged as a studio with not only the working and dining area but also with functional segments of the sitting room. With such approach to the arrangement of your living space, for the ready-made kitchen quite a modest area is given. In such situation, the following of maximum practicability and functionality of all elements of the kitchen becomes the first and foremost. The light colors, used for the furniture finishing of this house segments as a well reasonable use of wooden surfaces and dark accents facilitate visual extension of the premises.
But small kitchen area may also be arranged with the use of Scandinavian stylistics. As the snow-white background and wooden surfaces as the color and texture accent are so much loved in the Scandinavian interiors, perfectly manage the visual premises extension.
The “retro” household appliances perfectly match the Scandinavian premises. These may be bright models of the household appliances, acting as a color accent against the background of the kitchen interior as well as the color-matching pastel appliances.
The Scandinavian bedroom is a spacious and light room with its bright finishing and minimum furniture and décor. Comfortable bed, a couple of bedside cabinets and tables, desk lamps or wall lamps and small storage systems for the owners’ clothing. The Scandinavian style advocates for the simplicity and comfort, therefore, this is where instead of inbuilt sliding-door wardrobes or ceiling-fixed clothing hangers are used. The open book stacks may be placed above the bed head or along the free wall.
The designer technique of outlining one accent wall is not alien for the Scandinavian style as well. But in such bedrooms the wallpapers are used quite rarely – the decorative plasterwork or even monotonic painting acts as a finishing material. The surface behind the bed head as well as the perpendicular wall may act as the accent wall. The wall decorated with the bright photos or artistic works may act as the accent.
Nothing facilitates creating of comfortable and convenient atmosphere for sleeping and rest more than the presence of natural wooden elements. Flooring, key furniture item – bed and additional furniture will look perfect against the light finishing background. In this case, you will be able to arrange the interior without much expense, using the network stores furniture, like Ikea.
It is quite easy to use the country furniture or even garden furniture elements within the Scandinavian interior. For instance, for the bedroom you may use the cane baskets as the storage systems for the books, magazines and other stuff. And near the window you may place the snow-white chair made of rattan and some light table stand. Artificial interior elements or the elements of the residential space formation reaching the “necessary condition naturally” will also match perfectly the simple but very comfortable design of bedroom in the Scandinavian style.
The universalism of Scandinavian style is expressed not only in the fact that its basic motives may be used both for the city house and for the country apartment. For instance, for the children’s room decoration in the Scandinavian style even the small premises may be used but with an important remark – the window in such premise should be large and provide for maximum sunlight for the room. The advantage of using the Scandinavian concept when arranging the children’s room is that it will be easy to transform the interior depending upon the child’s growth, adopting it for new preferences and obtained skills. On the snow-white walls the décor may be placed which will correspond to the age and interest of the child, chaining it without essential losses for the family budget. Wooden furniture is an ideal variant for arranging the children’s room from the point of view of safety for the human and environment. And bright accents in the light interior of the room for the boy or girl may become the toys, books or textile arrangement of space.
In the children’s room arranged in the Scandinavian style, it is important to leave as much free space as possible for active games. The feeling of space is necessary not only for the child’s comfort but also for the support of the Scandinavian conception. The use of two-layer beds in case of two children living in the room becomes an optimal solution of the furniture planning. But the loft bed may also become a successful way out for one child as in the lower part of such construction the storage system may be arranged, the working place or creativity area.
The rooms for the newborn are traditionally light, pastel to ensure maximum relaxing atmosphere, where first of all parents will feel most comfortable. As the small owner of the premise pays little attention to the environment and is basically guided by its mother’s psychological condition. Preferable light finishing in the use of exclusively natural materials so important for the Scandinavian stylistics incredibly clearly reflects the demands to the space arrangement for the small babies. And arranging color accents will be possible with the use of toys, pictures on the walls and patchy textile for arranging the cribs or window apertures.
In modern city or cottage apartments the study is rarely an isolated premise. Most frequently, the home office is a small area arranged in the sitting room or in the bedroom. For an arrangement the working sector you don’t need much – just a compact desk or console fixed to the wall and open shelves for storage of the stationary, books and documents. For the Scandinavian style which does not stand the luxury such way of arranging the home mini-office is an ideal solution.
The premises for aqua-procedures in the Scandinavian style should be light, spacious to the maximum extent (to the extent reasonably possible in the planning of the modern bathrooms) and, surely, functional. The use of the light ceiling and walls finishing combination with the dark floors allows creating a visual illusion of space extension. At the same time, it fills the interior with the precision and constructiveness. Besides, the dark background of the flooring and the snow-white plumbing facilities look especially successful.
In the bathroom arranged in the Scandinavian style, it is difficult to do without the wooden surfaces, since the wooden natural pattern is the one to bring the warmth and comfort into the premises atmosphere which the city resident lacks. Most frequently, the wood (processed by the special antiseptics and protective lacquers) is applied for producing the storage system, sometimes – for the table tops around the sinks and even the finishing elements in the place with the smallest moisture impact.
In order to dilute the snow-white idyll of the bathroom snow-white finishing, you may use the ceramic tile with the pattern for the splash back finishing above the sink or bathtub or as the flooring. The premise will not look patchy if the ornament is only on one surface, and the remaining surfaces spread out light.
Entering the apartment or the house in the Scandinavian style, already at the entrance hall you will notice the simplicity and practicability of the design, successfully harmonizing with the beauty and lightness of its arrangement. Simple and clear forms, straight lines and modesty of the interior – this is what is going to catch your eye. Only necessary storage systems in the most laconic representation. The finishing at the entrance hall and corridors is exclusively practical – the use of light colors does not presuppose the cleaning problems, easily washed surfaces do not put the owners to a lot of trouble.
The use of three main variants of surfaces arrangement – white, black and wooden are not alien also for an arrangement of auxiliary premises such as entrance halls, corridors, space near the stairs, storerooms and terraces. A combination of such contrast surfaces with the reasonable application of dark allows creating the original appearance of the premises even with the simplest planning and minimum amount of furniture.