A Contemporary Finnish Cabin On The Water's Edge

This is turning into a very Finnish week, I must say! I love that, since I always feel I don't show nearly enough homes from this Nordic country. While yesterday's Finnish home tour wouldn't have looked out of place in my Relaxed Rustic book (formerly known as Modern Pastoral), this holiday cabin designed by award winning architect and owner Joanna Laajisto has more of a contemporary edge. Villa Rauhanniemi is perched on the edge of lake Karjalohja (don't even try to pronounce that!) in Southern Finland and designed to embrace the indoor-outdoor lifestyle our Nordic friends so enjoy in summertime. The pared back interior allows the lush surroundings to take centre stage while natural materials such as wood help to add warmth. But most of all, I love the deck. I could just imaging sitting there watching the sun going down with a drink - wait till you see it! 

What an idyllic setting! I recognise the last image from an outdoor space round-up I created a few months back. It's so great to see the cabin it's connected to!

Could you imagine spending summers here, looking out over the lake? 

I'm sure it's magical in winter too, when the lake turns to ice and the world is covered in a soft blanket of snow. 

You can see more of Joanna Laajisto's work here

Take a peek inside a load of other incredible Scandinavian holiday homescabins and rural retreats in the archive. It will have you dreaming of summer! 

I'm off to Denmark this morning by train (carrying a load of paperwork including my negative test!) - where I'll be making a short film about hygge with Knud Erik Hansen, CEO and grandson of the founder of Carl Hansen & Søn for their online open-house event in June - register for our live Q&A here!). Come and join me on Instagram stories for a sneak peek behind the scenes! Knud Erik's house is simply incredible! 

Niki

Photography: Mikko Ryhänen found via Desire to Inspire with thanks. 

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Kati's Rustic 19th Century Log House in Iitti, Finland

Good morning! How was your weekend? It was a bank holiday weekend here in Sweden and I spent part of it brushing up my Hygge knowledge in preparation for the filming I am doing with Carl Hansen & Søn in Denmark tomorrow and Wednesday (so exciting - I can't wait to share more info!). For those of you not familiar with the term, Hygge is a Danish word, used to acknowledge a feeling or a moment, alone or with friends which is cosy, charming and special, in a relaxed, humble way. It's a celebration of slow living and focusing on the simple things in life. I immediately thought of aspects of this log cabin in Iitti, Finland. The country house dates back to 1839 and Kati Pilli-Sihvola took on the task to lovingly restore it - being careful to maintain its original hyggeligt charm, while adding modern touches. Kati describes her style as 'country rustic minimalism' - and I feel the interior matches this perfectly! Ready to take the tour? Wool socks at the ready! 

Kati kept the original fireplace - previously used to bake and cook food - and added modern conveniences such as a range cooker and wood burning stove.

Look at that ceiling! Isn't it incredible? Kati has worked hard to restore it and it's a perfect reminder of the history of the building. 


Simple sheepskins, blankets and cushions are a hallmark of understated Scandinavian cosiness, while a vintage cabinet painted in dusty pink provides a perfect spot for bits and bobs. 

It's incredible to think this wall is almost 180 years old! 

In front of it, a basket is used to store extra blankets for when the temperatures plummet outside - or you simply feel like making things extra cosy! 

In the sitting room you can clearly see the wonderful old patina in the ceiling and also the old brick floor - combined with the darker walls, it's easy to imagine how hyggeligt it would feel in the evening under the glow of candlelight. 

Peeling paint on the 'spell' doors and a vintage leather chair adds to the rustic, relaxed vibe. 


What would a Finnish home be without a sauna? And I have to say, I've never seen one as incredible as this. It oozes old world style, and easy to envision generations before beating themselves with birch branches (a Finnish tradition) and feeling a sense of pure relaxation. Today, Kati and her family lovely to relax here.  


What a perfect tour with which to start the week! It certainly has me dreaming about pastoral life! 

For more lovely images of Kati's home take a look at her blog and instagram - they're full of inspiration. 

And here are some other Finnish home tours you might love today: 


Kaunis Suomi! Beautiful Finland! 

Wishing you a wonderful start to the week friends! 

Niki

Photography: Kati Pilli-Sihvola

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An Magical Rustic Family Farmhouse In Rural Finland

I hope you're having a great week! The warm weather has finally arrived in Southern Sweden so we've spending lots of time down outdoors making the most of it! The leaves have burst into life, and a drive through North Skåne countryside yesterday reminded me so much of a trip I once made to Finland. Have you ever been? I remember feeling mesmerised by the rolling hills, the wildflowers and my first sighting of a moose grazing in a meadow. It was magical! I wish I'd known about this rural home owned by Hanna and her husband Tomas and their children Frans, Hilda and Eedvin at the time of the trip, it would have been perfect for my Relaxed Rustic book (formerly known as 'Modern Pastoral').  Located in Western Finland, the rustic farmhouse is filled with beautiful vintage and antique finds against a backdrop of 17th century architecture and romantic wallpaper. When the family aren't tending to their sheep and chickens, the children are tearing through the rooms on a trike - just as Tomas' family have done for generations. In the words of the Finns: tervetuloa sisään

How magical! 

I love the Scandi rustic country style, do you? 

I think I'm secretly a country girl at heart! 

Hanna shares daily snapshots of life in the Finnish countryside over on her lovely instagram feed @punainen.pihlaja - well worth a follow if you're looking for some dreamy inspiration! 

Other Finnish homes to love today: 


Have a lovely day! 

Niki

Photography: Hanna / @punainen.pihlaja - shared with kind permission

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Ilkka's Charming Rural Retreat In Finland

Hei! How are you today? Feel like getting away from it all? Today, I'm whisking you off to rural Finland and the charming bolthole of interior architect Ilkka Mälkiäinen. Acquired 12 years ago as a weekend escape from Helsinki, Ilkka and Janne have carefully renovated the country home to bring it back to its former glory. Think high ceilings, beautiful wood floors and rooms painted in deep charcoal and steel grey. Today, the home is a goldmine of Finnish antiques and vintage finds and packed with charm. Welcome to Ilkka and Janne's age-old country retreat! 









How beautiful! I love the relaxed, eclectic feel of the home. 

Did you have a favourite room? I've always had a real weakness for romantic style bathrooms. Imagine locking up your city apartment, coming out here to the quiet of the countryside and running a candlelit bath. Heaven! 

This takes me back to the day I captured a home for The Scandinavian Home deep in the heart of the Finnish countryside. And there was a moose grazing in the meadows beside the house. 

I've been wanting to return ever since - something for next summer perhaps? Have you ever been to Finland?

If you're after a little more Finnish dreaming today, here are a few other homes to love: 

Have a cosy day! 

Credits: Krista Keltanen / Jonna Kivilahti - shared with kind permission

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