Northern passion

It’s been 40 years since Ikea’s iconic Scandinavian style first conquered the hearts of Canadians. Streamlined, authentic, functional, and cozy, this leading style, which has constantly reinvented itself over the years, is inspired by a lifestyle that’s very specific to Northern Europe.

Influenced by nature and a climate that is often gloomy and cold, Finnish, Swedish, Norwegian, and Danish designers have a knack for transforming Northern homes into cozy and inviting cocoons. So it’s no surprise that Canadians are huge fans of this decorating style that is all about simplicity and design.   
Wood, wool, white, fur, splashes of colour... these are but a few of the key elements that characterize this down-to-earth style. So how can you recreate this look in your home?

Northern accessories

Loss of living space is a pressing concern in Scandinavian design. Because most apartments available in big cities are often very small, people are constantly looking for ways to maximize their space: arranging furniture in the most logical way possible, opting for modular pieces, and making sure they have plenty of storage.

This doesn’t mean that all your belongings are hidden behind closed doors. On the contrary—your belongings are a way of expressing your personality, of showcasing your uniqueness, and transforming your home into an inviting oasis, so let them be seen! Objects like lamps, vases, artwork, and candles are always welcome additions to any room. Juxtaposed portraits, posters, and illustrations are also a great way of brightening up your home. Just remember to stay minimalist in your approach and avoid too much clutter—that’s it!

Neutral and accentuated tones

More than 80% of walls in a typical Northern home are white. But wait! Not just any white—we’re talking off-white or natural white. Traditional white is reserved for the furniture.  
It is, however, possible to add a bit of warmth to a Scandinavian home by playing with pastel accent colours, or even cooler tones, like rich violet or soft blue. Applied in moderation, these colours can enliven a specific corner or add a bit of complexity and depth to any space.    
When it comes to flooring, Scandinavians prefer a more stripped-back look featuring pale wood in rustic, all-natural tones.


Keyword: simplicity

Like Danish designer Pernille Picherit points out, the Scandinavian style “is, first and foremost, about simplicity.” You need to start by clearing your space, then you need to opt for streamlined, functional furniture. Everything is arranged as to maximize space and ensure fluid circulation between rooms.
And if you love simplicity, chances are you love storage. That being said, a room that is too orderly can appear cold and uncomfortable. The trick is to balance out calmer zones with more vibrant ones that boast as Picherit describes it, “deliberate disorder.”


You’re now ready to enjoy winter from the comfort of your warm and welcoming abode!