A lot of home decor ideas for Scandinavian and Japanese interior design may be based on some of the country’s most popular themes. The Japanese use a number of geometric designs that are characteristic of their architecture. In contrast, Scandinavian interior design generally uses large panels, exposed ceiling beams, open spaces and bold colors. A common theme among Scandinavian interior design themes is clean lines. Scandinavian designers also like mixing different textures, such as wood, leather and fabric, in order to create a look that is more dynamic.
Both the Scandinavian and Japanese interior design styles emphasize the harmony between interior spaces and the outdoors. Scandinavian interior styles generally have a minimalist approach. This is reflected in their choice of flooring materials, such as natural stone or granite, and wall coverings, such as glass, mosaic tile, or Terra cotta. Japanese home decorating focuses on the harmony between the indoors and outdoors, using outdoor elements such as lanterns, rice paper panels and bamboo stools. Zen-like qualities are common, as is the use of natural fabrics such as florals and grasses.
In both styles, textures are used to add depth, creating an overall feeling of space. For instance, solid wood paneling with muted painted floral designs creates a welcoming atmosphere. Conversely, the same room can be furnished with a bold-patterned wallpaper and then finish it off with a colorful floral fabric and needlework. The concept of adding texture to a space is not limited to color combinations, however. Furniture pieces can be manufactured from a variety of textiles, as well as wood, metal and leather.
In the Scandinavian style, open floor plans are key. This results in a “breathing room” for guests who wish to relax before moving into the dining room or relaxing bedroom. This also makes a home more functional than a residence with a formal design. For example, a Scandinavian home with a fireplace and open plan floor plans is much more inviting than one that has more traditional furniture.
In terms of aesthetics, minimalism is at the heart. Minimalist interior design focuses on the environment rather than its beauty, resulting in spaces that are inviting and comforting. Minimalists like to keep things simple. While this can mean the absence of elaborate accessories or art pieces, the result is a home where the focus is on the function of the space rather than the visual appeal. Scandinavian interior design principles also apply to spaces that are lighted, whether this means a light-filled glass room or a space with bare wood surfaces.
As with any home decor, minimalists understand that texture creates mood. By adding natural materials like wicker, wood, or linoleum, you can create a calming space that provides a peaceful atmosphere for guests. If you’ve ever felt at peace when you have your floor pillows and throw pillows spread out across the space, you have at least seen the use of wicker in Scandinavia. Pillows and cushions in wicker can create a soft, welcoming space, while coordinating colors and textures like brown and gold create a soothing interior style. In addition, many homeowners prefer to complement the use of wicker with other types of earth decor, such as wicker baskets and wooden candle holders.
Scandinavian interior design principles also allow you to get away with wallpaper. Rather than cover every inch of your walls in colorful patterns, opt for simple, flat wall borders that provide color and interest by letting in light. Scandinavian minimalist homes tend to feature clean lines, so the addition of a few accent wall colors or even some floral prints can really make a statement.
Finally, the final element of the interior design principle of simplicity is simplicity itself. Scandinavian interior designers tend to favor horizontal lines, especially in the kitchen where countertop surfaces are so narrow. Scandinavian design allows for the use of a great deal of light, so that every nook and cranny of the home can be highlighted. Many of the patterns used in Scandinavian kitchens are characterized by straight, clean lines, such as the stripes of berber or the florals of japans. The result is a home that not only looks inviting but also keeps with the traditions of the home by being simple yet rich.