By Kim Cook Associated Press
Perhaps to alleviate the dreariness of long northern winters, which are not unlike the gray of the Northwest, Scandinavian style tends toward folk-art florals, crisp checks, plaids and stripes, and wood furniture left natural or painted in colors that evoke the region’s natural beauty.
The look is casual and easy, with playful touches and a simple yet refined vibe.
If all that sounds appealing as you shake off winter’s gloom, you’ll find many pretty, Scandinavian-inspired decor options for spring.
Scandinavian style is typically anchored by whites and creams, which provide a light-filled canvas on which berry red, sky blue, forest green and ochre offer pops of cheerful color.
But there are also soothing faded pinks, soft stone grays and dusky purples in the palette.
This spring, Ikea honors its Scandinavian roots. The Hemnes furniture collection really nails the Swedish look with a linen cabinet in a deep red, a bed frame in gray and a shelving unit in blue.
An airy, pared-down version of neoclassical design was the hallmark of 18th-century Gustavian design, which has become popular outside Sweden in the last 20 years. Ikea’s Isala side table is a great example, in clean white or forget-me-not blue.
Anthropologie’s got the Amora bedding set with a colorful graphic on snowy white. While South American in origin, the folk pattern is similar enough to those of northern design that it reads Scandinavian.
The same is true of the retailer’s Fesi throw pillow from the Philadelphia-based design house Mushmina. It’s a Moroccan-embroidered pattern, yet looks like a snowflake or ski haus motif.
And at www.finnstyle.com, find Oiva Toikka’s plump little glass birds, made by the Finnish glass house Iittala.