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A Striking Holiday House By The Sea in Rural Iceland

Iceland. What an incredible country. Have you been? Per and I had the pleasure of visiting over a decade ago and we were absolutely mesmerised! We took the coastal road South, taking in waterfalls, glaciers, icebergs, and volcanic peaks on one side, and the rugged coastline on the other. Along the way, seals would pop their heads out above the icy waters and eye us over the black sands. The nature was lit by 24-hour sunlight and was as raw, striking and dramatic as you can imagine. After four days we left feeling we'd only just scratched the surface and agreed to return one day. I was reminded of this promise when I stumbled across The Black House this morning. 
   
Located at the foot of mount Hafnarfjäll along the shores of the rugged Snæfellsnes peninsula, the house was designed by Icelandic interior architect Rut Káradóttir. The simple clapboard frame was inspired by the humble 18th century coastal houses typical of the area, which were often treated with natural tar to shield the facade from the harsh climate. Inside, the magical open-plan living space combines a rustic vibe with contemporary touches and the deep, dramatic tones emulate the stark drama outside the window. Enjoy the tour! 




So incredible, don't you think?! 

I think this house is a sign that we need to return and explore more of this incredible Nordic country as soon as possible!

Did I mention it's available as a short-term holiday let too?! I KNOW, RIGHT?! 

FYI - the house sleeps four and is available to rent through Boutique Homes.

Meet you there? 

If you've been to Iceland and have any tips, please do share below! I'd love to hear them! 

Niki

Photography courtesy of Boutique Homes.

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A Relaxed, Bohemian Orange County Home Full of Plants!

First a TV - now a loo. Whatever next?! Hahaha! Can you tell I'm making an effort to keep things real here on My Scandinavian Home lately? Plus, the 'powder room' in this house is so pretty, I couldn't resist sharing it (after all, we all have one and in need of a little inspiration from time to time, right?)! There is off course WAAAY more about the lovely home of Katie and Tyler Branch (AKA @branchabode) to feel inspired by too. Photographers by trade, the pair live with their young family in a craftsman-built house in Orange County, California dating back to 1909.  The house has been decorated with a wonderful blend of traditional, mid-century and industrial pieces in white, brown, black as well as plenty of lush greenery at every turn. Enjoy the tour! 

Katie and Tyler prefer to invest in classic pieces that stand the test of time. In the dining room mid-century dining chairs circle a round dining table* - and traditional cabinets can be seen in the background. 

Coffee table from West Elm, Pom pom blanket*, Tisca make a similar rug

A little nook by the window makes a perfect spot for a small home office and home for several plants! 
Source a similar mid-century desk here*

After a lot of hard graft (including ripping out an ancient wall-to-wall carpet) the master bedroom has become Katie's  favourite room in the house. I think I can see why, can you?!


When I came to this picture in the @Branchabode instagram feed, it stopped me in my tracks. If I ever get the opportunity to re-do my bathroom, I'd like it to look a lot like this. Do you feel drawn to this style too?

Ceramic tiles from Daltile, plant stand from Urban Outfitters (FYI - they have the most amazing array of planters right now - check them all out here), this Hammam towel* is similar. 

Shower head from Rubinet Faucet Company, Tiles from Daltile (as before)

I wasn't kidding about the loo - and what a pretty little space it is too, don't you think?

The family dine al fresco in the shade of the house under some colourful hanging baskets. The pretty outdoor dining set is from West Elm. 

I love it when I get loads of ideas from a home tour - and today I'm feeling full of inspiration from this abode! I hope you got lots of ideas too! 

Is there anything that stood out to you in particular?

If you'd like to see a few more corners of this home, it's well worth hopping over to @branchabode. You can also check out Katie and Tyler's photography here and here

Just in case you'd like to extend your morning / afternoon coffee break, here are some other beauties from California: 


You might also like to check out the ultimate guide to hanging plants and how to work with indoor climbers.  

Have a wonderful day!

Niki

Photography: Katie Tyler / Branch Abode
*Affiliate links

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A Cosy Summer Cabin In The Swedish Countryside (available to rent!)


Tjena! How was your weekend? I'm feeling so distracted today: the schools have broken up, the warm weather has arrived and the sparkling sea beckons!  It's honestly the best time of the year to be in southern Sweden. Why don't you come and join us?! I wrote a local guide to Malmö here - and if you're a foodie, there's the unique Stedsans in the Woods about an hour away. Better still, if you're travelling as a couple and looking to get away from it all, I spotted that Swedish interior designer and photographer Daniella Witte is renting out her super cosy summer cabin.  Situated near Lomma (which has a wonderful beach), the cosy grey and white summer cabin interior is reminiscent of Daniella's own lovely home, sleeps two and has beautiful vistas over the Scanian countryside.  It's hard to imagine that the structure is made from repurposed steel shipping containers! How incredible is that?!

Daniella has painted an Ivar cabinet from IKEA in the same colour as the walls (Jotun Demidekk S 2502-Y) and added wheels.

I like how Danielle has also painted the hooks (seen above left) in the same colour as the walls - and opted for a kitchen cabinets and a table in a similar colour to keep the look clean and decluttered. 


When you go for a monotone look it's important to add loads of texture. Curtains are great for adding texture, softness and dampening the sound. 

A white bed skirt and natural bed linen* add a lovely freshness to the space. As you've no doubt noticed, linen is a massively popular material in Scandinavia. One of the main reasons is that it's really practical - it keeps you warm in winter and nice and cool in the summer, plus the natural creases add a relaxed look to the room - no ironing required!  




Perfect little spot for a morning coffee (or evening G&T! FYI the nearby island of Ven makes a great local gin, just saying!).

You might need to book quickly - before the resident cat gets in there first! 

Daniella rents it out Sunday to Sundays throughout the summer. Her contact details are available here

A quick note on container houses: there are thought to be over 14 million out-of-service shipping containers in the world. They have become a popular building material since they are relatively cheap to acquire, easy to transport and keep construction costs down - plus it's a great way to recycle!

Have a fabulous start to the week. 

It might just be time for that first dip in the sea for the day here in Malmö...

Niki

Photography / design: Daniella Witte

PS it's Per and my ten-year wedding anniversary next week and we've booked a little getaway to Italy (so excited, I can't remember the last time we were without children!). We're flying to Pisa and looking for somewhere beautiful to stay on the coast or Tuscan countryside - any tips?! All a bit last minute, I know! 

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A Wonderful Vintage-Inspired Family Home in Metz, France


Formerly the owner of vintage concept store Le Velo Rose ('The Pink Bike'), Pauline Mellinger closed her brick and mortar shop in 2017 to devote her time to raising her children, looking after their three cats, chickens and rabbits - and renovating the family home in the countryside near Metz, France. I don't have access to all the 'before' pictures from Pauline's home but the few I do have perfectly demonstrate the incredible transformation it's been through. From play tents, flower petal lamps and swans  - to splashes of blue and countless vintage finds: the family enjoy a beautiful, playful, relaxed and truly personal living space that caters for all ages! 

Kitchen before

Kitchen after
Dated dark cabinets have been replaced with fresh white fronts, vibrant blue tiles, a wood worktop and relaxed open shelving.

The family dining room has been decorated almost entirely in white and wood for a light and airy feel. 

Look closely and you'll notice that the wire chairs all have a slightly different form which helps to add to the relaxed atmosphere of the room. This Bertoia chair* is similar. 

Playroom before

Playroom after
Despite the dark blue walls, the room is full of dappled light thanks to the dual aspect windows and disco ball light! The flower pendant light is one of my absolute favourites right now (and picking up momentum on instagram!). It's available here


The main sitting room is made up of IKEA pieces, DIY items, vintage finds and the odd children's toy! 

Landing before

Landing after
The heavy bookcase and cast iron banisters have been replaced with a simple white wall and a mirror for a lighter look. Trinkets and a chair collected on travels add a vibrant pop of colour to the space. 

Bedroom before

Bedroom after
Pauline and her husband's bedroom has been transformed into a cool, light and airy space thanks to the blue and white theme. I also love how she's used the darker paint to turn the fireplace and chimney breast into a focal point. 


It's amazing how one bright coloured Boucherouite rug* can make all the difference to a white bathroom, don't you think?!

The blue and white theme (with rattan accents) is continued into the children's bedroom - with a half-half blue and white wall. The cane flower pendant lamp also mirrors the lighting used in other rooms. 

Aaaaaah, what a perfect home. It's charming in every way, don't you think? 

Is there anything that stood out to you? 

If you'd like to see more of pauline's lovely home, hop on over to her instagram @leevelorose.

Also, don't miss: A relaxed vintage-inspired family home in the French country-sideThe colourful home of a French photographer and stylist and a charming white and natural family home in Normandy.

Right, that's it from me for the week, The sun's shining and the sea beckons. I hope you have a fabulous weekend that sparkles in every way!

See you Monday1

Niki

Photography: Pauline Mellinger
* Affiliate links

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