There's no denying that Scandinavian countries have a natural talent for decorating and design. Many famous midcentury-modern designers and architects like Fritz Hansen came out of Denmark, while Sweden's IKEA has stolen the hearts of homeowners around the world with its approachable well-designed pieces. It seems as though these Nordic countries have perfected the art of cozy minimalistic interiors—perhaps a result of spending many winter months inside.
What can we learn from Scandinavian countries when designing our homes? For starters, there's hygge—or the art of making a home feel cozy and welcoming. Then, there is minimalism—or the skill of exercising restraint with anything from knickknacks to furniture. At the core of it all are a few key pieces that seem to pop up in every Scandinavian home. From midcentury Danish chairs to cozy sheepskin throws, here are six Scandinavian capsule décor pieces you're likely to find in every home from Denmark to Sweden.
A Vintage Moroccan Rug
Moroccan Beni Ourain rugs may feel a little overdone in the U.S., but in the Scandinavian context, they are still very much a staple of Nordic homes and contribute to giving minimalistic spaces with modern lines and cool neutral colors a bit of warmth and coziness.
Classic Midcentury Chairs
Europeans often pay a lot more attention to the provenance of their furniture pieces than we do in American, and this rings true especially for Scandinavians who have an affinity for classic midcentury Danish design pieces.
Black Sheepskin Throws
Usually spotted draped over a chair, bench, or sofa, dark sheepskin throws are a staple of Scandinavian design—and contribute to the hygge philosophy to make a home feel welcoming and cozy. One tip: Do not use sparingly.
Every item is carefully considered in a Scandinavian home, so a wealth of design knowledge is indispensable in creating a thoughtfully curated space. This is why it's not rare to find coffee table books and design magazines on every surface in a Scandinavian home.
Dramatic Sculptural Lighting
Just like they do to their chairs, Scandinavians pay careful attention to their lighting—often splurging on timeless modern design classics like pieces by French designer Serge Mouille. These spider-like pieces come in every form and always make a big impact in any room.
Statement Lounge Chairs
If there was one item in a Scandinavian home that consistently seems to steal the show, it would be an artfully positioned modern armchair. Midcentury modern Danish designers have created some of the most iconic chair designs in the last century, and Scandinavians like to proudly show them off in every corner of the home.