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Ever heard of hygge (pronounced “hoo-gah”)?It is the Danish lifestyle word encompassing feelings of coziness and contentment. This buzz word has sky-rocketed in Pinterest, Instagram and Houzz searches. It’s synonymous with Scandinavian design and the feelings it embodies. This Scandinavian type of style has been coming on strong in the United States, with IKEA becoming a mainstream go-to place for furniture and design inspiration. Characterized by minimalism, simplicity, and functionality, this design style actually started in the early 20th century, but didn’t become popular until the 1950s. This design style emphasizes function over anything else. It’s extremely disciplined and tailored, with no frills or fuss.

So, what makes Scandinavian design distinctive? White walls, neutral color palettes, natural texture, and clean lines are staple elements for any Scandinavian inspired room. White walls maximize lightness and brightness and a neutral color palette allows small touches bold colors to pop. Rooms are designed with light flooring, with small rugs, and no carpeting. Simple silhouettes in furniture selection draw the eyes in a linear fashion, to emphasize those clean lines.

Cabinetry isn’t just for the kitchen – check out our living room-office inspiration board below!

Shown here: (clockwise) IKEA, Soderhamn, Sofa, Finnsta turquoise; IKEA, Emmafrida, Throw, gray/white; IKEA, Sinnerlig, Pendant lamp, bamboo; IKEA, Vedbo, Gunnared light brown-pink; IKEA, Lisabo, Desk, Ash veneer; IKEA, Fejka, Artificial potted plant with pot, indoor/outdoor succulent; IKEA, Fenomen, Unscented block candle, set of 5, natural; Floor & Décor, LifeScapes, Almond Pier Birch Smooth Solid Hardwood; The Little Book of Hygge; Siteline, Malone door style; Siteline, Thermofoil, Everest; IKEA, Tofteryd, Coffee table, high gloss white

Small touches of pastels are used minimally in this space, with a light blue-green sofa, and soft pink desk chair and some (artificial) succulents. Natural light wood elements are used throughout on the flooring, desk and pendant lamp. Siteline’s high-gloss Thermofoil goes great with the low-sitting contemporary coffee table – a price conscious material compared to acrylic. Get that hygge touch with candles, a knit throw, and The Little Book of Hygge.

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