The Scandinavians have made an art form of living life happily, calmly and simply. They’re getting it right, again and again. It’s no wonder we all want to copy them. And what better place to start than your bedroom?
We’ve all heard of hygge by now, haven’t we? Just in case you haven’t, here’s a little recap: it’s a Danish concept which encompasses the sense of contentment we get from the cosy and charming moments in life. Think of it as a state of mind, rather than an actual physical thing – the sense of wellbeing you get eating by candlelight on a winter’s night, or the feeling of freshly laundered sheets.
Scandinavian inspired interiors are inexpensive and easy to achieve, mainly because they are so simple. Forget fussy bedroom furniture and matching your curtains to your duvet. This is a stripped-back style that will not only look calm, it’ll make you feel more relaxed.
Start with a simple, clean colour palette
Your bedroom should be a haven. A calm space to escape to at the end of a hard day. Bedrooms should be simple, soothing spaces – free of the clutter of everyday life. They should be a reflection of our personalities, but also a place where we leave our baggage at the door.
Choose a light, calm colour for your walls. An off-white is perfect and surprisingly versatile. A cream-toned off-white will feel warm and welcoming, while grey tones feel cool and bright. Avoid lots of competing colours and prints. Choose curtains, rugs and bed linen in soft, muted colours that won’t fight with the simplicity of your walls.
Create interest by using lots of different textures in similar colours. Combine simple linen curtains and cotton bedlinen with a knitted throw, sheepskins and soft textured rugs. If you stick to one muted colour palette, the overall effect will be calmness, with hidden depths.
Cut the clutter
Do Scandinavians have clutter? Either they’re very organised, or they hide it in cupboards. You might not be a minimalist but we can all learn something from a paired-back, tidy ethos. Remember your bedroom should be a haven, not a dumping ground. Swap the clutter for a carefully curated collection of things you really love. Keep most surfaces mess-free, but remember to choose little corners of the room to create special areas, filled with your precious things. A bedside table, a window sill or a little shelf are all perfect places to express yourself.
Get a houseplant
A few years ago, houseplants were pretty unfashionable. It’s the kind of thing you bought for your room at college, or your first flat – not what you’d choose for a calm, sophisticated bedroom. Well, forget all that. Houseplants are key to the scandi-inspired look. A pop of fresh green is just what that calm, neutral palette needs. Have a big plant in a basket on the floor, or a few little ones dotted about. They not only look great, they’re good for you too. Plants really do make the air cleaner. It’s also rather lovely to nurture something.
It’s not all about looks
Remember, creating a Scandi-inspired bedroom isn’t just about choosing soft furnishings. It’s about adopting a state of mind. What’s the point of creating a beautiful, calm bedroom if you invite all the stress of modern life in too? Try making your room as technology free as possible. Leave your mobile phone elsewhere. This is your haven, you shouldn’t have to share it with the pinging of social media and e-mails.
The Swedish have a word for this. It’s called lagom, which means just the right amount. A sense of moderation and keeping things in balance. Remember this simple concept and your bedroom will become the haven you crave without even having to pick up a paintbrush.
Do you love the Scandi look? We'd love to hear how you've embraced it in your home!