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50 shades of white

Scandi style: White interior design can be so cosy

In a world that seems to be getting more hectic by the day, the need to enjoy the little things in life has never been greater. It’s time to look north and learn from the happiest people in the world and the lovers of calm: by embracing the romantic Nordic style of Scandinavian interior design.

Bedroom furnished with a workstation in white.

Delicate and unobtrusive: The Nordic interior design trend creates harmony between clean lines, delicate colours and cosy textures. (Photo: Hutomo Abrainto on Unsplash)

The origins of Scandi style

Interior styles come and go. Thanks to its clean lines and focus on sustainability, Scandinavian design has been attracting growing attention in the interior world for some time. The characteristic Scandinavian style of interior design as we know it today first appeared in Norwegian, Swedish and Danish homes in the 1950s. Designs such as the Paimio Chair by Alvar Aalto, the Egg Chair by Arne Jacobsen and the Wishbone Chair by Hans Jørgensen Wegner continue to define the Scandinavian style today. They are classics of Nordic interior design.

It’s a style that focuses on clean, simple lines and minimalist functionality with a touch of comfort and warmth provided by a blend of textures and flattering lighting. From sofas and beds to decorative vases, every element of Scandi style fosters a calming space that is at once practical and cosy. All the furnishings are an attempt to create a feeling of hygge (pronounced: “hoo-gah”). The word hygge comes from Norwegian and roughly translates as “cosiness”. If something is described as hyggelig, that means it inspires a sense of warmth, intimacy and contentment .

Less is more: the Nordic colour palette

Nordic interior design stands for a calm, assured sense of style – in form and colour. A completely white interior may sound cool, austere and clinical at first – but the Scandinavian style proves that it doesn’t have to be like that. Winters in the north are long and dark, so it’s hardly surprising that Scandinavians like to incorporate fresh colours into their interior decor. But it is above all white that predominates in the Nordic style – in every facet, from creamy white to snow white all the way through to eggshell. On the walls or pale floorboards, white brightens rooms, making them more welcoming. It creates a feeling of calm and clarity, expansiveness and light.

Besides radiant white, the colour palette of Scandi style is calm and defined by pastel shades, a theme that the 2022 Pantone colour trends also pick up on. Beiges and browns that bring rattan or pampas grass to mind are currently in as well. Plants play an important role – and not just as inspiration. They’re also a popular choice as decorative elements. Delicate and unobtrusive, they add natural colour accents to underscore the home’s hyggelig feel.

Sofa with a pillow and a blanket.

The Nordic style would be unimaginable without cuddly cushions, big blankets and comfy textiles. (Photo: Taylor Hernandez auf Unsplash)

Natural materials foster hygge

Natural materials and a variety of textures define a hyggelig interior design in the Scandinavian style. Wood is a key and essential material. The style often works with premium-quality solid wood, such as spruce, maple or birch, combining it with leather or metals to create an exciting interplay of different textures.

Soft furnishings also play a key role in Scandinavian interior design. Alongside wood, leather and stone, natural fibres such as linen, wool or cotton appear in the Nordic style. As curtains, blankets, carpets or upholstery fabrics, they complement the understated look and make it feel even cosier.

What makes this selection of materials so special? Their haptics. Leather, wood and fabrics feel pleasantly warm and soft to the touch. They appeal to all the senses, inspiring reveries of a crackling fireplace in the cold winter.

Romantic interior design with white and wood

Defined by minimalism and timelessness, Scandi style still has a firm place in the world of interior design today. It continues to set interior trends – and rightly so, as the following pieces demonstrate.

The Campanula Lamp by Frau Caze

The Campanula Lamp by Frau Caze (Photo: Frau Caze)

Campanula Pendant Lamp:

The Campanula Lamp by Frau Caze combines naturalness in material and form. It is inspired by the shapes of a wine bottle and a bell flower. The snow-white porcelain lampshade is decorated with prints of leaves and grasses from wild meadows.




Italian grandezza meets Scandinavian minimalism. With its sofa collection, HANDVÄRK demonstrates that unobtrusive natural shades can go beyond simple elegance. The voluminous cushions exude a feeling of comfort, inviting you to snuggle up. Black steel legs form a strong contrast to the soft upholstery.

Lounge armchair by Tetrimäki Corporation:

Lounge armchair by Tetrimäki Corporation (Photo: Tetrimäki)

Lounge armchair by Tetrimäki Corporation :

Designed by Eero Saarinen in the 1950s, the Grasshopper Armchair remains a classic today, combining comfort with a clean look. The interplay of light wood and a webbed seat in beige leather is characteristic for the Nordic style and creates a warm break in an all-white look.

Chair by Carl Hansen & Søn

Chair by Carl Hansen & Søn (Photo: Carl Hansen & Søn)

Chair by Carl Hansen & Søn :

Scandi style would be unimaginable without the legendary Wishbone Chair and its unmistakable shape. Designer Hans J. Wegner developed the characteristic Y-shaped backrest to give the chair greater stability and comfort. An idea that has made the Wishbone Chair a timeless icon of Danish design to this day.

Hyggelig homes: white interior design for a cosier feel

Stylish restraint and the utmost comfort – this is what makes the Nordic style so special. In the cold, dark winter months, the interior design trend soothes our desire for light, warmth and tranquillity. But this isn’t the only reason why Scandi style will be with us for a while. Its timeless design and simple forms can be paired with almost any other style.

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