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Style Guide: Modern Scandi

Characterized by simplicity, minimalism and functionality, the Nordic design movement — which flourished in the 1950s — is expressed through strong colour blocking and bold palettes, such as the black and white scheme designer Dominic De Freitas used in the Modern Scandi home. Made from natural and unfinished materials, furniture and accessories in this style often have clean lines and incorporate geometric patterns.

keep THESE TIPS in mind WHEN CREATING THIS LOOK AT HOME:

  • Mid-century modern/ Scandinavian design was first introduced after the World Wars shook the global economy. Interiors went from ornate Victorian to functional, pared-down spaces with a no-frills feel. Characteristic to the era, brick walls were left bare and exposed. A great way to bring this look into your home (especially if your walls aren’t built from brick) is to apply a faux brick panel or veneer. Some faux brick panels can look less than convincing, so Dominic suggests applying a coat of paint so no one will be the wiser.
  • Floor carpeting just isn’t a thing in Scandinavian design. Hardwood floors, preferably light, are found everywhere but the bathroom.
  • When it comes to furniture and textiles, mix and match natural materials. Don’t be afraid to mix different woods (keep them pale for the most part, with the exception of teak) and add wicker, rattan, seagrass, hemp, faux leather, brass, copper, etc. The faux fur throw, seagrass area rug and live-edge wood side table seen in the video are a perfect example of this style.
  • Nordic countries have long, dark winters, so it comes as no surprise that they use a lot of light in their homes. Scandinavians favour hanging lamps over ceiling spotlights and like to scatter various lamps and candles around the room to help diffuse the light. Consider grouping table lamps with interesting shapes as a decorative statement, like Dominic did in the living room.

Want more decor inspiration? Check out our Modern Scandi Style Guide, with exclusive tips from designer Dominique De Freitas and subscribe to receive three more style guides directly to your inbox along with exclusive bonus content and expert tips and inspiration.