Scandinavian kitchen

Scandinavian kitchen – all the design secrets

All the secrets of the Scandinavian kitchen design – furniture, decoration, lighting, décor.

Scandinavian design is perfect for a small kitchen and a kitchen-living room. You can easy transform such interior at any time – with a help of textiles and décor only.

Scandinavian design in the kitchen interior – 6 main features:

  • The main criteria – functionality and usefulness, design is the secondary one
  • White background and bright / contrasting details
  • Simple strict shapes
  • Natural materials
  • Abundance of wood with fine texture
  • Profusion of light with a bit of decoration

Scandinavian kitchen

Which styles go with Scandinavian Interior?

If pure Scandinavian interior seems to be so trivial for you, you can add bright accents and interesting details from the other styles: eco-style, light classics, contemporary and modern.

Color palette

Basic Scandinavian colors are white and all its shades like snow, cream, milk, vanilla cream, baked milk, ivory, eggshell or white sand.

The design of Scandinavian kitchen is perfectly supplemented by complex whitewashed cold shades of gray, beige, blue and green.

For the accents you should use dark (black, graphite, asphalt) and bright colors (yellow, burgundy, green, blue, turquoise).

In addition, you can take light colors from the Tikkurila palette of paints.

Scandinavian Interior

Kitchen – living room layout

In Scandinavian studio apartments kitchen is usually combined with living and dining room. Tabletop or large dining table will help you to demarcate the areas.

You can accentuate table and chairs with rugs: natural rug made of jute and sisal, or woven lint-free rug both can be such a perfect idea. Use sole-colored rug or the one with a geometric print.

Kitchen furniture in Scandinavian interior

Kitchen set

  • Scandinavian style includes simple and laconic kitchen set. Its color is often white. Sometimes there are kitchens with coating made of light, honey-golden shades or cognac wood. Combination of light and white wood makes Scandinavian interior warmer and more interesting.
  • Coating should be matte or semi-gloss. High white gloss is also good, especially if the kitchen is very small. Here the shutters reflect the light and add depth to the space around.
  • Scandinavians like open upper shelves (kitchen looks more comfortable with crockery in sight), and upper cupboards, which they make high, often up to the ceiling.

The photo below is of the Scandinavian kitchen with smooth and framed coating:

Table and chairs for Scandinavian kitchen

The most popular Scandinavian design furniture is IKEA kitchen set:

  • Modern classic in Scandinavian – the set with framed coating without any decorations and with modest milling (like the Budbin kitchens from the Method series), or similar custom-made kitchen sets.
  • Scandinavian interior with a touch of country or Provence is ideal for IKEA kitchen set with Hitarp coating, which replaces the popular Stot one.

Choose simple handles for kitchen furniture – rails or brackets (if your kitchen is in modern style), buttons or “shells” (for Nordic kitchen in classic or country style). There are especially good facades, which are opened by pressing or have hidden milled handles.


Tabletop is often wooden; it makes Scandinavian design warm and cozy. The best choice here is solid wood tabletop. If the set is cheap, here suits the particleboard tabletop decorated with wood veneer, plastic or stone. Stone tabletop should be black or gray: monochromatic or with fine specks “salt-pepper”.

Table and chairs for Scandinavian kitchen

The dining table is usually made of wood. It is varnished or painted white, sometimes black. A great option here is a table made of pine, oak or beech wood.

The perfect solution for tiny kitchens is a small table for breakfast and a couple of chairs. It is often used folding table with a hinged countertop or compact bar table. If the kitchen is very small, the table is replaced with a narrow bar along the wall or a folding table-shelf (it can be purchased at IKEA or made to order).

Large dining table for 4-6 people is usually placed in the living room. That is a nice idea to hang beautiful chandelier or a group of several lamps-hangers over the dining room.

If you have a tiny kitchen-studio in the Scandinavian style, then table-transformer with rectangular or round tabletop (folding, sliding or retractable) is the best choice.

Chairs in a Scandinavian style are wooden (with a retro design, curved back and colored cushions) or pointedly modern (made of white, transparent, colored plastic or leather with metal-chromed legs). You can often find chairs of legendary designers – Ant model by Arne Jacobsen or Eames by Eames spouses.



The ceiling is always white. It is usually painted in white, but you can order matte stretch ceiling or make hanging drywall one.

White painted batten perfectly suits ceiling decoration of the Scandinavian kitchen with a touch of country.Coating for walls of Scandinavian kitchen


The most popular coating for walls of Scandinavian kitchen is paint. If you have a flat in a new building, you can buy a non-woven wallpaper for painting (it will perfectly hide the cracks from shrinkage of the house) or fiberglass (it helps to reinforce the walls).

Very popular decision in Scandinavian interior – making one accent wall papered with a beautiful print. You can buy typical northern designed colors and patterns from Scandinavian wallpaper manufacturers (e.g. Borastapeter and ECO wallpaper). Moreover, Mr.Perswall offers mural with a typical Swedish design.

Brickwork or brick tiles will perfectly dilute smooth white walls. If your kitchen is combined with the living room, you can put bricks in both areas – it will bring the space together.


Scandinavian backsplash is of two kinds:

  1. White or very light one. Usually it is white tile with or without sloped edge, white mosaic, brick or wall panel of tempered white glass.
  2. Bright and contrast. For this one you should choose bright tiles with pattern (handcrafted cement tiles are especially good, but many manufacturers offer more affordable choice), vivid mosaic or 10×10 tile or tempered glass with photo print. The best colors for the contrast backsplash are gray, wet asphalt, red and various shades of blue (ultramarine, turquoise, light blue).


The Scandinavians love wood and they often make the same floor throughout the apartment. Cold shades (bleached oak, oak, Nordic, white ash) make the room lighter. Warm shades visually make the space around warmer and they produce an effect of Scandinavian country to the kitchen interior.

The most popular choice is a wooden floor made of engineering board, parquet or flooring. Less expensive choice here is good waterproof laminate in imitation of solid wood. It is beveled on all sides and has a single-band pattern.

Owners of the kitchen-studio often make the same floor in all the flat areas as it helps to expand and merge the space visually in a small flat.

The more practical option would be ceramic tiles or granite in imitation of stone next to the kitchen set; the rest of the kitchen-living room may be covered with parquet or laminate. Color of the floor tiles in the kitchen is usually dark, light gray or beige-brown with streaks. Such color is the most non-marking.

Skirting board is usually white, matching the walls color, and it necessarily should be high. Look for the model made from foamed polyurethane with 12 -15 cm height. These ones can be found, for example, in the range of Tarkett, Ultravud, Evroplast.


The natural light is never enough in Scandinavia. Therefore, good lighting is the main element of any interior. The more light sources, the better.

Lamps design is very important as they often serve as a focus in the Scandinavian interior.

Chandeliers with wooden elements, details of chromium, copper and colored wire also look good.

Crystal chandelier will perfectly fit the interior of the kitchen-dining room with a touch of classics.

You will never find fabric lampshades in the Scandinavian kitchen as they absorb too much light. However, you can often meet the easiest type of lamp – incandescent one without any lampshade on black or colored cord and “granary” or “factory” lamp with metal lampshade.



Northern kitchens usually have not much décor. Scandinavians worship things with meaning, which are beautiful and useful. Please watch the gallery below for decor ideas that will decorate the interior of the Scandinavian kitchen.


Usually the Scandinavian kitchen has no textile curtains – instead of them you better choose a roller blind. It is the nice thing to make a color accent – it may sole-colored or has an interesting print.

But if you strongly dislike such appearance of the windows, you can hang light curtains made of translucent fabric, lace curtains or roman blinds made of a monochromatic material matching the walls color.

Linen curtains or blinds of neutral shades, or accent ones with bright distinctive prints will give the best fit to the Scandinavian kitchen-living room.

Posted in Kitchen design, Scandinavian style.