Understated elegance, warm functionality, clean lines, uncluttered spaces and flawless craftsmanship are the key characteristics of Scandinavian Interior Design. Your skilled renovation contractor can easily help you implement these Scandinavian Interior Design Principles; but you, the homeowner, should educate yourself about it in order to make informed decisions. In this guide, we will simplify the Scandinavian Interior Design Principles and characteristic for you.

History of Scandinavian Interior Design

The Scandinavian Design Movement started in 1950s in Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland and Iceland. Minimalism, light colours, ample use of wood and functionality over beauty were the key characteristics of the early Scandinavian Interior Designs. Later, Scandinavian glass, furniture and artworks became an international sensation thanks to travelling exhibitions portraying these designs, and,  as a result, the style became exceedingly popular in USA and Canada. By later 1980s, the classic Scandinavian design started to fade paving way to Modern Scandinavian Interior Design Principles. These retained some of the traditional aspects of designing (including functionality and use of intricate handmade designs) but also combined it with modern principles such as treating individual objects as independent units of design.

Modern Scandinavian Interior Design characteristics

The three main characteristics of Scandinavian Interior Design are:

  1. A Design that works for everyone
  2. Beauty along with functionality
  3. Optimal use of resources

Based on these 3 principles, modern designers implementing the Scandinavian interior design principles strive to keep their designs simple, at the same time, reflective of their local natural environment. The use of light is exceedingly important and you will also see interiors with muted colours, natural materials and minimal ornamentation. Scandinavian Interior Design Principles are also influenced by geographical factors; especially by the countries following this style of designing. Thus, you might see Denmark’s sea faring/naval traditions, Sweden’s “functionality evokes aesthetics” principles with European influences, as well as Norway’s folklore and modernism.

Top tips to implement Scandinavian Interior Design Principles in your home renovation

Simplicity is the key to designing using the Scandinavian Interior Design characteristics:

Lighting– As stated before natural light is essential but modern designers also use simple and impressive ideas such as the use of mirrors and candles to light up the dark and long winters. Naturally modern Scandinavian lights also showcase the same clean lines and understated elegance which is so important to this style of designing.

Colours– White is the primary colour used in this style of designing. The white paint ensures that natural light is enhanced further making the room look bigger and uncluttered. Pops of colours may be added to the otherwise bland interiors through colourful rugs, vases, cushions, wall art etc.

Learn how to choose paint colours for your home!

Furniture– Wood is predominantly used in the Scandinavian Interior Design style. Natural wood can be seen in the furniture as well as in the flooring complementing the neutral white background. Natural wood may also be seen on the walls and accessories and ash or beech wood are highlights of this style of design. A large dining table is of utmost importance in Scandinavian homes, since these people love to entertain friends and family.  In general, the furniture pieces are such that they offer open and uncluttered spaces.


scandinavian interior design principles

scandinavian interior design principles

The best part about implementing Scandinavian Interior Design Principles in your home renovation Singapore project is that you can do so without spending a whole lot of money. Indeed, the focus of this design is accessibility and affordability to all; so most elements of design described above can easily be incorporated without the need for frequent updates.

Learn how to renovate a home economically!