Scandinavian Living Room Style: Simple Design Ideas

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The Scandinavian living room style is a haven of coziness and functionality. It combines clean lines and natural materials with earthy accents.

This design style began in Nordic countries as a response to the extended darkness and lack of natural light during long winters. The bright, airy spaces feature neutral colors, loads of texture, greenery, wood, and stone materials.

The popular interior design style focuses on simplicity, functionality, and minimalism. Furniture is typically simple with minimal ornamentation.

Use textiles such as blankets and pillows sparingly, and minimize decor to prevent clutter. Lighting is also an important aspect of Scandinavian design, with a focus on natural light and the use of simple, understated fixtures.

It’s a design aesthetic that’s both warm and inviting, perfect for anyone who wants to create a home that feels both stylish and livable.

Key Takeaways

  • Scandinavian living room style emphasizes simplicity, functionality, and minimalism.
  • Furniture in Scandinavian living rooms is typically simple, with clean lines and minimal ornamentation.
  • Lighting is an important aspect of Scandinavian design, with a focus on natural light and the use of simple, understated fixtures.

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Scandinavian Style Living Room Ideas

The Scandinavian living room design style is all about creating cozy inviting spaces that are practical and aesthetically pleasing. Scandinavian countries experience long periods of darkness during the winter, so maximizing natural light is essential.

Large windows and skylights are a must, and sheer curtains or blinds allow the light to flow in while maintaining privacy. Light wood flooring and furniture further reflect the light and create a sense of airiness.

Scandinavian colors include:

  • White
  • Beige
  • Gray
  • Light Blue
  • Soft Green
  • Pale Pink
  • Charcoal
  • Light Wood Tones
  • Soft Neutrals
  • Muted Earth Tones


  • MINIMALISM + FUNCTIONALITY – Scandinavian design is all about function, and every element in the room should serve a purpose. This means that furniture should be practical and comfortable, and decorative items should be kept to a minimum.
  • NEUTRAL COLORS + NATURAL LIGHT – This design style features bright airy spaces that feel open and welcoming. A light color palette of white, beige, and gray, is used to reflect natural light and make the room feel larger. Large windows are common which allow for natural light to flood the space.
  • WOOD + ORGANIC MATERIALS – Wood, leather, and wool are common materials used for adding warmth and texture. Wood can be found in furniture, flooring, and home decor. Organic materials such as plants and flowers add a touch of nature to the space.

Scandinavian Living Room Furniture Style

When it comes to selecting furniture for this classic interior design style, it’s important to stick with pieces that are sleek, elegant, and functional. Here are some key factors to consider when selecting furniture for your living room.


  • SLEEK LINES – Furniture pieces should be minimalist in design, with no unnecessary ornamentation or embellishment.
  • SIMPLE FORMS – Look for pieces that are sleek and elegant, with a focus on practicality and functionality.
  • MULTI-PURPOSE – Scandinavian living room pieces are functional and space-saving. There may be a coffee table with built-in storage or a sofa bed that can be used as a guest bed. This helps to make the most of a space without sacrificing style or comfort.

Sofas and Seating

Look for sofas and chairs that are comfortable and functional. Natural fabrics like linen or cotton, in neutral colors like beige, grey, or white add texture and warmth. Accent cushions in bold colors or geometric patterns are perfect for personality and interest.


Coffee Tables and Side Tables

Styles are simple with clean lines in materials like wood or metal for a sleek, modern look. Choose tables with natural wood finishes to introduce warmth and texture.


Make sure every piece of furniture serves a purpose. Design the overall layout for optimal flow and livability. Think cozy sofas with built-in storage, nesting tables, and multi-functional ottomans.

Textiles and Decor in Scandinavian Living Room Style

Scandinavian design features soft furnishings with texture, such as wool, cotton, and linen. They create a cozy and inviting atmosphere that’s soothing to the soul.

Layer throws, pillows, and rugs in a variety of textures and patterns. Don’t be afraid to mix and match, as the eclectic look is part of the charm.


  • Soft Furnishings with Texture – Wool blankets, cotton throws, and linen curtains are popular choices. These materials also bring a natural element to the space, which is a key aspect of this design style.
  • Rugs and Throws – In Scandinavian design, rugs and throws are great for texture, warmth, and comfort. Rugs in Scandinavian design often utilize natural materials like wool or cotton, showcasing simple, geometric patterns.
  • Cushions and Decor – Cushions and decor are the finishing touches in a Scandinavian living room design. Wool, cotton, and linen are common fabrics for texture and comfort. Vases, candles, and plants add a natural element and create a cozy inviting atmosphere.

Lighting in Scandinavian Living Room Style

By now you know Scandi design features clean lines, minimalism, and functionality. Lighting plays a crucial role in creating a warm and cozy atmosphere in Scandinavian living rooms.


  • Layered Lighting Design – You’ll notice a lot of layered lighting in Scandinavian living rooms. There are typically multiple light sources including ambient, task, and accent lighting.
  • Iconic Lighting Fixtures – Iconic lighting fixtures are simple and elegant. The most famous is the PH lamp, designed by Poul Henningsen in the 1920s. It features a series of concentric shades that diffuse light creating a warm and inviting atmosphere.
  • Pendant Lights – A popular lighting style that’s suspended from the ceiling which provides ambient and task lighting. They come in a variety of styles and materials, from simple glass shades to intricate metal designs.
  • Floor and Table Lamps – Provide task lighting and can be used to highlight specific areas of the room. They come in a variety of styles and materials, from minimalist designs to more ornate pieces.

Incorporating Scandinavian Style: Tips and Tricks

Scandinavian living rooms are known for their simplicity, functionality, and elegance. Here are some tips and tricks for incorporating Scandinavian style into your living room.

Tips + Tricks

  • Hygge all the way – Hygge is a Danish concept that roughly translates to “coziness.” It’s about creating a warm and inviting atmosphere that makes you feel happy and content. Candles, fairy lights, and a crackling fireplace are all great ways to add hygge to your living room.

Incorporating Plants and Greenery

Plants bring life and color to any space, and they’re an essential part of a natural living room design. Choose low-maintenance plants like snake plants, ferns, and succulents. You can even group them to create a mini indoor jungle.

Use a mix of hanging plants, potted plants, and vases with fresh flowers. You can also use plant stands to elevate your plants and create a focal point in the room.

Maintaining a Clutter-Free Space

Scandinavian living rooms embrace minimalism and maintain clutter-free spaces. To achieve this look, it’s important to keep the room tidy and organized. Consider using storage solutions such as shelves, baskets, and cabinets to keep items out of sight.

Another way to maintain a clutter-free space is to limit the number of decorative items in the room. Focus on a few statement pieces such as a unique lamp or a piece of art.

Artwork and Wall Decor

Artwork and wall decor are important Scandinavian living room ideas. They add personality and character to the room, while also creating a focal point. When choosing artwork and wall decor, consider using neutral colors and simple designs.

One popular way to incorporate artwork is to create a gallery wall. You can do this by mixing framed prints, photographs, and artwork. Using black and white prints will create a cohesive look.

Incorporating plants and greenery, maintaining a clutter-free space, and using artwork and wall decor will create a beautiful living space that embodies the essence of Scandinavian style.


Scandinavian living room design is all about simplicity, functionality, and comfort. Incorporating natural elements, neutral tones, and functional furniture in your living room design will reflect the Nordic aesthetic and create a sense of well-being.

Natural light is a crucial detail so large windows are used to let in as much natural light as possible. This creates a bright and airy atmosphere that promotes relaxation and a sense of calm.

Natural unfinished wood is popular a choice for furniture and flooring. Wool, linen, and leather fabrics are also commonly used as well.

Soft textures and warm lighting create a cozy and inviting atmosphere. They include plush rugs, comfortable throws, and soft lighting fixtures.

Use this Scandinavian living room inspiration in your home to create a space that’s stylish and functional. This design style is perfect for creating a space that’s comfortable and beautiful.

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Last Updated on January 24, 2024 by Nicole DelaCruz

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