Published on April 7, 2019

It’s more likely than not that you own at least one Swedish-designed piece of furniture. IKEA’s global success has turned the world onto Scandinavian style, but you would be remiss to assume that all Swedish aesthetics follow a similar vein. In fact, Swedish design is far more multifaceted than you might imagine.

Yes, Scandi style does tend to follow a few general guidelines: It can err on minimalism, it’s more often than not defined by sleek silhouettes, and when patterns are involved, they’re usually pretty whimsical. In Sweden, many designers play on these traditions, but innovation and experimentation lead to creations that can range from maximalist to organic and even Bauhaus. In a country of 10 million residents, there’s plenty of room for the unexpected.

Ready to expand your knowledge of Swedish form and function beyond IKEA? Check out a few of our favorite brands below.

If you’re a maximalist through and through

Austrian architect Josef Frank emigrated to Sweden when he was 50, fleeing the rise of Nazis, and went on to become one of the country’s most influential designers. His vibrant, whimsical prints can be found at Svenskt Tenn, a 95-year-old interior design store in Stockholm, where Frank developed Swedish modern style.

An opponent of fur, Frank developed a take on traditional animal skin rugs that is nothing short of delightful.

Go big or go home: This sofa is an investment, but it’s an accent piece that truly stands apart from the crowd.

If you’re all about KonMari

Iris Hantverk offers all the tools you need to keep your home need and tidy 24-7. Cleaning supplies, after all, don’t have to look unsightly—just take a look at these brushes, made according to traditional Swedish crafting.

Sweeping up table crumbs never sounded so appealing.

Consider this the perfect basket in which to store your farmer’s market bounty.

If you prefer to keep things simple

With just two rug models and a small collection of cork goods, Formgatan prioritizes well-made, environmentally conscious design. The line is inspired by Nordic sensibilities, partnered with an effort to make home decor more sustainable.

Talk about eco-chic: This comfy rug is made out of recycled plastic water bottles.

Using Portuguese cork, Formgatan creates stunning coasters and trivets.

If you love a modern silhouette

If you love the sleekness of IKEA, consider Hem when you want to upgrade your home furnishings. Its playful designs marry minimalism and whimsy through designs that are made to last.

When it comes to throw blankets, a geometric pattern always works wonders.

The right lighting can instantly change a room. This fun pendant is a powerful accent piece.

If you like a bit of drama

Fans of New York home goods store Coming Soon are sure to get a kick out of Esterior, a Stockholm-based interior goods store that sells globally curated accessories and vintage finds alongside its own in-house designs. For the eclectic, there’s plenty to love.

Behold the combination room divider–meets–clothing rack you didn’t know you needed.

A brass headboard lends a Midas touch to any bedroom.

If you keep things playful

Founded by designer Maria Gustavsson, Swedish Ninja offers a vibrant, cheerful alternative to toned-down, minimalist Scandi-style. If you’re in search of your new favorite accent lamp, this is where to look.

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: Armoires are cool again.

A sweet two-globed lamp brightens up a nightstand.

If you can’t get enough pattern

Plastic rugs have been a Swedish design staple since the ’50s, and Brita Sweden has contemporized them with vivid hues and geometric patterns. Additional textiles like throw blankets and pillows offer plenty of pattern-layering opportunities.

A playful salmon pillow is just the thing to cheer up a drab sofa.

Who knew that a soft mustard hue would be just right with a raindrop-inspired print?

See more inspiring decor:
9 Finds That Made Me a Vintage Convert

Bath Mats So Pretty That You Almost Won’t Want to Step On Them
Join Me in My Quest to Resuscitate Avocado Decor

Discussion