Born out of harsh northern winters that demand simplicity, efficiency and a sense of cheerful elegance, Scandinavian kitchen design is all about a seamless blend of form and function wrapped in an inviting setting. There’s something for everyone in this style as it can be warmed with natural materials and rustic textiles, brightened with the crisp white of minimal furniture, or even weaved with antiques for extra hydration.
We love the way style extends to aesthetics and especially budgets and the added benefit of Scandinavian minimalist design is that whenever a kitchen renovation is needed, it won’t break the bank. From Scandi Luxe to pretty basics – take a look at our inspiring Scandi kitchen ideas.
1. Action look utility
If you have a small kitchen, the utilitarian aesthetics of Scandinavian style work well to take full advantage of every inch on offer. Because simplicity, economy, and organization are an integral part of the style, modular wall-mounted cabinets, sleek ideas for floating kitchen shelves, and ergonomic worktops that put efficiency into shape form the core of Nordic-inspired kitchens.
A super basic but beautiful cabin kitchen puts this practicality ahead with only the essentials. The simple wood easel table matches the blonde wood cabinets and horizontal picture window ledge as a stunning design element in the space as well as a place to store everyday items.
2. Add a hint of color
Bright white is often associated with Scandi interiors but in recent years we’ve seen a move toward subtle kitchen color ideas that mimic the clear clarity of northern light. Farrow and Ball’s The Nordic Edit embraces unexpected shades of its core, Farrow & Ball Archive with special focus colors matching the landscapes of the North and the facades of the city’s architecture.
Going beyond the white and gray we might traditionally associate with Scandi design, The Nordic Edit embraces bold and unexpected shades from the primary color palette and Farrow & Ball archives.
3. Create a family area with rugs
Scandinavian minimalist interiors are the perfect space for weaving textiles in the form of an area rug. Choose a graphic rug for a clean Scandi look like ‘Plus’ by Nordic Knots. This contemporary design has a minimalist aesthetic with an artistic flair. The rug’s brand spirit is inspired by the light, colors and landscapes of the North
“We wanted to bring something from our home into every home, and we realized there was a good rug for every beautiful Swedish home,” says Lisa Lisero, founder of Nordic Knots.
4. Bright white and light colors
Think Scandinavian style and the first thing that comes to mind is white. The harsh winters that shaped the style dictated this color choice, as the homeowners wanted an interior that was airy and cheerful and ditched the cold and bleak outside. A white kitchen is an obvious choice, as it maximizes available natural light while creating a sense of comfort.
“Scandinavian interiors have a minimalist style centered around clean lines and functionality in the most beautiful way,” says Helen Parker, creative director at deVOL Kitchens. “Soothing pastel colors and wood floors create a warm and homely ambiance without the need for a lot of decoration.”
5. Small smart living space
Scandinavian design is known for its efficiency and utilitarian nature and this is nothing more than their kitchens. String Furniture was designed in 1949 by Swedish architect Nisse Stringing and is an icon of Scandinavian design.
Sleek, stylish and flexible, this compact apartment kitchen features an innovative kitchen storage idea that consists of just three elements – shelf, wall panel and metal fitting and can be put together in an infinite number of configurations – here all the small kitchen essentials and two-seater dining table frames. Consideration is added to the space with a pair of black bentwood cane chairs and a black faux pendant lamp.
“What sets String apart is the distinctive design and simplicity of construction, allowing for endless combinations,” says Peter Erlandson, co-owner and director of String Furniture. Flexibility ensures that String remains relevant and because the design is timeless, it lasts in look and feel. Simply put, it is a classic that will enhance most interiors, while being modular enough to suit many different conditions and life stages.
6. Add a nature-inspired wallpaper
Scandi is not only bright and minimalist, but also known for its folksy aesthetic, featuring plenty of rustic elements and nature-inspired prints. This brightly colored kitchen mixes antique oak cabinetry with nautical wallpaper with wildflowers. Nocturne from the brand Boras Tapeter features wallpaper with a narrow floral pattern, hand-painted in light and dark shades.
7. Add character with raw wood cabinets
The Scandinavian love for nature is well known and this is reflected in the home with plenty of wood and untreated natural stone. Plain blonde wood is a cornerstone of Scandinavian design and is a deliberate expression of appreciation for the beauty of nature with the natural wood grain we’ve always seen.
This wood kitchen incorporates this natural grain into the elements of a modern kitchen through raw wood handles and semi-covered cabinets.
“Here we married two different door finishes together,” explains Jayne Everett, design director at Naked Kitchens. “Polished oak wood and smooth lacquer finish, combined with two different handle styles to generate interest while maintaining the simplicity that is key to the Scandinavian aesthetic.”
8. Incorporating marble into Scandi Luxe
Long-term Scandinavian design enthusiasts will be delighted to see the rise of Scandi-luxe, where compact Scandinavian design takes on a touch of luxury with brass details, brass accents and bright white marble.
“The owner of this cottage wanted a chic Northern North feel,” says Craig Mattson, managing director of Roundhouse. With faded finishes and simple lines. Classic Shaker-style doors were chosen in honor of the estate’s ancient architecture. The marble kitchen helps accentuate the room’s depth and ensures the island doesn’t steal view. Where to stop the marble is determined by the height of the first shelf. Besides, the owner wanted to fill the shelves with elegant ceramics and rustic treasures that stand out against a simple background.
What is Scandinavian cuisine?
Creating a Scandinavian-inspired cooking space typically involves layering warm wood in cabinetry and floor shapes, muted paint colors, and a simple but textured backsplash. Stylish stools and miniature kitchen utensils complete the look of the timeless design.
What is scandinavian home design?
What is Scandinavian design? Scandinavian interior design is a minimalist style that uses a mixture of textures and soft colors to make a modern, elegant décor feel warm and inviting. It emphasizes clean lines, utility, and simple furnishings that are functional, beautiful, and comfortable.