Is Scandi still in style?

01 Feb 2017

The short answer is yes. With its misty white walls, timber accents, hints of rustic elegance and monochromatic good looks, this is a style that will stay around for a while, and it’s one that resonates with homeowners at this end of the world… and not just in Scandinavia.

Up in the Nordic wilderness, the colours associated with the look are inspired by icy blue lakes, towering green pines and watercolour skies. Here, the same palette is easily relatable to our casual lifestyles, natural environment and sea-encircled shores. Resene has a slew of dusky pastels, interesting whites and silvery grey paint colours to underpin the look. There’s even an icy blue called Resene Scandi.

The classic Scandi look uses pops of blue, which aren’t often seen in the local interpretation. It’s surprising given our love of the colour and our association with the sea.

Scandi is a style that combines utility and beauty and is easily adapted to many different lifestyles and situations:

  • Its simplicity is great for small spaces, like apartments – just paint everything Resene Alabaster, add some black and timber accessories, and you have a minimalist look that escapes being stark.
  • Luxe it up with aged metallic accessories, a hide rug, leather sofa and lambs wool cushions.
  • Or turn it rustic with knobbly baskets, raw timber furniture, felted wool cushions and chunky knit throws.
  • Give it a beachy twist with leis of shells, feathers, twigs in vases, driftwood as ornaments, a woven jute lampshade and Turkish towels as throws.
  • Or take it tropical by adding some potted palms.

Scandi style tips:

  • Texture is key to counteract all that simple furniture and white or grey walls – rugs, throws, cushions, timber and baskets.
  • Avoid visual clutter by choosing accessories that can be grouped together and have a common look – organic looking white ceramics, honed black bowls and vases, timber trays and vessels.
  • Paint your floors white – use hardwearing Resene Lustacryl for this or use Resene Walk-on paint. Or check out the new Resene Colorwood Greywash, or the popular Resene Colorwood Whitewash.
  • Use Resene SpaceCote Flat finish for your walls to give that chalky look.
  • Ditch the rose copper accessories and replace them with burnished bronzes and etched copper for a more on-trend look.
  • Use oversized monochromatic artwork and photo prints.
  • Simple Shaker-style pine furniture like three-legged stools and slender-legged tables. 

To showcase pieces from her Indie Home Collective stores, stylist Claudia Kozub created this Scandi/Bali style setting. She lightly painted the timber feature wall in Resene Nero, allowing the grain to show through, and painted the rest of the room in Resene Alabaster. 

In another setting, Claudia's painted the whole room in Resene Alabaster. The feeling is a bit more rustic but still in keeping with the Scandi vibe. If you're going down the route of polished concrete, protect your flooring with Resene Concrete Wax. 

For a slightly warmer take on the Scandi style, CC Interiors designed this kitchen in their showroom using Resene Quarter Akaroa on the walls. The windows are painted in Resene Black. 

In this Rose & Heather setting, the hero is Resene Black White walls and whitewashed floors. Get the look with Resene Colorwood Whitewash.

It's all about texture in the Scandi sphere. Paint effects specialists Greer Clayton used Resene products to amp up the texture of these board and batten walls. Click here for the DIY steps.

If you're looking for a place to start with Scandi decorating, why not the home office? This uncluttered and fresh space from Freedom Furniture epitomises the style.

Potted plants, sheepskin and simple, but well constructed, furniture will never go out of style and is part of the Scandi charm. The walls are painted in Resene Black White.

With monochromatic artwork, tidy furniture, and a design that combines beauty and utility, this Sydney home by Lymesmith is an up-to-date approach to Scandi style. The walls are painted in Resene Taupe Grey and Resene Quarter Bianca.

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the look

If you're stuck on what
colour to use or need colour
advice, try out the Resene
Ask a Colour Expert service.