The Scandinavian aesthetics and design style are widely recognized and loved throughout the world, thanks to many talented and prosperous designer who helped popularize this specific approach to furniture design, architecture and interior decoration. The modern Scandinavian design is the epitome of minimalist aesthetics and detailed functionalism inspired by organic, natural shapes. With roots that can be traced to the more distant past, the style as we know it today was developed in the 1950s and ‘60s when it was embodied in the classic works of designers such as Poul Henningsen, Arne Jacobsen and Hans Wegner. Many of the designs that appeared at this time are now considered timeless classics thanks to their ever-growing popularity. The Nordic tradition of good craftsmanship combined with the post-war hunger for light and simple shapes have provided the basis for the modern Scandinavian design culture. The style has evolved over time, but it retains the same core features to this day. If you would like to decorate your home in this style, you can get an insight into the core ideas of the design philosophy of Scandinavian design.
#1: Nature Inspires
With a strong focus on sustainability and natural materials, Scandinavian design is very concerned with the “return to nature” tendencies of the modern world, so it comes as no surprise that wood is one of the most commonly used materials. It is used innovatively, as seen in Hans Wegner’s Wishbone Chair and many other designs where wooden parts are steam-bent into the right shape. But, the choice of materials isn’t the only thing “natural” in Scandinavian design. On the contrary, many of the designers from this movement found great inspiration in organic shapes and soft curves found in nature. The classics of Scandinavian design like the Swan, the Egg or the Ox are just some of many examples.
#2: Sophisticated Colour Scheme
When you think of Scandinavian design, the bright colours like pink, green or yellow probably aren’t the ones that come to mind. In fact, this style is known for being underplayed, delicious and sophisticated, including the colour selection. The grey and white tones help to create the light expression and make the room appear more spacious. But even though the colour choices are rather subtle, this design style is far from boring! The light expression ensures that the furniture pieces are stylish and sophisticated. This approach naturally led to greater attention being paid to lighting which went on to become an integral part of the Scandinavian design. Many of the prominent designers of this movement were concerned with designing lighting fixtures and different types of lamps with PH and Verner Panton being probably most famous ones. In this domain, Scandinavian style emphasizes clean lines and the creation of natural-looking and welcoming light which contributes to the appearance of bright and airy spaces. And when the winter comes, bright and reflective colours are also utilized to reflect the light throughout the room.
#3: Stylish, Harmonious and Simple
Regardless of whether it’s the furniture or lamps, Scandinavian style is known for its clean lines, simplicity and harmonious look. But don’t let those simple lines fool you because their execution is anything but simple! Designers had to think about every detail of their design and it’s the smallest things that really make these furniture pieces come into their own. Nothing is left to chance in the Scandinavian furniture tradition, so its simplicity is unique and interesting, and not mundane or boring. Also, those simple lines are the reason behind Scandinavian design’s unwavering popularity and the possibility to incorporate furniture designed in this style in a wide variety of modern décor styles.
#4: Detailed functionality
In addition to the great design, another hallmark of the world-famous Scandinavian design is the focus on functionality. It is a balance difficult to accomplish, but it is precisely this unique mix of aesthetic and practical value that makes this style so popular and recognizable throughout the world. A famous example of how functionality and design are joined together is the Series 7 chair by Arne Jacobsen – the design of the chair is beautiful and elegant in itself, but it’s the comfortable seat and the possibility to stack the chair that adds some extra functionality to the design. The same can be said for many other famous examples of Scandinavian design, including the PH Lamps, where in addition to stylish design, there is a great focus on balanced and glare-free lighting. Furniture inspired by this style will be classic and elegant for decades to come, providing even the simplest of rooms with a comfortable and welcoming atmosphere.