Design Principles of Scandinavian Style

Scandinavian Design Design Principles of Scandinavian Style

There are several principles to adhere to when decorating a home in the Scandinavian design scheme with one of them being light. The region is infamously dark due to their incredibly long winters making for short days and a lack of natural light for residents. Many make up for this by bringing nature into their homes with light, bright color schemes and natural, organic elements.

There is a common theme in the Scandinavian region with their decorating style of bringing nature inside in order to mimic what they’re missing due to the harsh winter climate decreasing the amount of daylight they achieve. This style is timeless in homes across the globe being among one of the most popular styles on the market which has persisted throughout many decades. Here are the key principles pertaining to the Scandinavian design.


Scandinavian design has never been one to include wall-to-wall carpet but is more favorable to natural wood flooring in lighter shades throughout the home. There are some residents who put down a variety of different throw rugs that are made of organic materials such as sheepskin but for the most part floors are left bare.

Muted colors

The color scheme used in the Scandinavian home are generally muted in order to bring an understated, light feel to the inside of the home. Recently the color choices are being updated to include more brilliant colors as a way of bringing more depth and boldness into the living spaces. These are including rich reds, oranges, yellows, greens, turquoise.


The Scandinavian design is kept to a minimum as far as the furnishings and the accessories. The minimalism allows for the organic elements of the accessories, the wood, and the color scheme to speak the language of nature to the residents.


Typical of a Scandinavian home are modern furnishings of warmer wood tones, subtle curves, and that of tapered legs. There is a type of mid-century-modern inspiration to the furnishings which are slim so as not to take up a large amount of space but yet they should be comfortable and inviting to guests. There are very few adornments on the furnishings. It’s very clean. When using accessories there is little ornamentation. Pillows that depict embroidery do so simply but with great detail.


Many Scandinavian designs will incorporate flowers or other types of botanicals as a way of bringing the outside indoors. The living elements provide an added pop of color to the space along with a natural, minimal accessorization.

The main principle of Scandinavian design is a ‘less is more’ approach with a need for the space to be simple but yet practical. The furnishings manage to serve double duty as to not only beautify the space but they have a functionality for the home. If you do the Scandinavian design correctly, you will have accomplished a space that emits an understated elegance with a utilitarian purpose. This ultimately defines what Scandinavian style has come to be known and loved for.

Deborah Torres
Deborah Torres
I fell in love with home decor and interior design in the summer of 2015, when I joined an interior design company as intern. Little did I know then that a few years later, I would still be as passionate about interior design so I created this blog. Writing many posts to help others to achieve the design they like.
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