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A Dreamy 17th Century Swedish Summer Cottage With a Focus on 'The More the Merrier'

Hello there friends! I hope you had a lovely weekend? On Saturday we had beautiful blue skies and warm weather here in Skåne (let's not talk about Sunday!). For a day, we dared to dream of the Swedish summer when many flock to cottages in the countryside. The cottages are usually geared up to cater for as many as possible - with beds at every turn! Take this wonderful summer cottage in Breven, just east of Stockholm. Tucked away among meadows and forest, this 17th century timber cottage comprises two dwellings - a main house (seen below), and an outhouse (featured above). The first serves as a gathering place (when times allow) as well as bedrooms for the owners. The second is for overnight guests and extended family- with one large room kitted out with a double bed, a bunkbed and two sleep alcoves. Pretty curtains help to block out the midnight sun - or the light of a lamp, for those who like to stay up and read! My children would love this - especially Allie, who thinks it's really cosy when we all bunk up together as a family! Roll on Swedish summer days. 

Look closely and you'll notice a painted diamond wood floor - a popular feature in traditional Swedish dwellings. I also the uneven wood logs - which add to the character of the space. 

The master bedroom has such a wonderful romantic air to it. And is that a TV on the ceiling I see?!

The thick walls pave the way for windowsills which are wide enough to double up as seating. A perfect spot for a morning coffee!

The guest house:


If you're ever invited to stay at someone Scandinavian summer cottage, remember to bring your own bed linen. I've been caught out on a few occasions... and I'd hate for you to make the same faux pas! 

The pool house (below) is kitted out with a sauna and extra bathroom - for cooler days. 

Saunas are a common sighting in Swedish homes (Especially in the basement) - although not quite as common as in Finland! The jury is still out on how much people use there here, with some enjoying regular sessions amongst the steam with their family, and others admitting they simply use it as a fancy place to dry their clothes! 


How dreamy! A perfect summer oasis. And with all those fireplaces, a wonderful place to visit all winter long too! 

Could you imagine spending your summer here? 

Find out more about this property over at Historiska Hem

Feeling intrigued about the Scandinavian summer cottage having seen this? Check out the entire archive here. 

Wishing you all a wonderful start to the week!

Niki

Photography Lina Östling

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A Charming Danish Summer Cottage With a Coastal Vibe

Saturday marked the spring equinox - which to me is a pinnacle moment in Scandinavia! From now on the hours of daylight will exceed the darkness, what a wonderful thought! It also gives us the license to dream that summer is around the corner (even if great swathes of the region are still blanketed in snow!). Many Scandinavians will be heading to their cottages over easter to start preparing them for the summer ahead. And no doubt, Helle Rye of @anordicmoment will also be making the trip (sanctions permitting). Helle loves to spend weekends and summer holidays at her charming cottage on North Zealand. The relaxed coastal vibe of the cottage contrasts sharply with the modern vibe of her city apartment. It's a place where she comes to relax, make the most of the great outdoors or read a book beside the woodburning stove. Enjoy the tour!  

Summer cottages are very much a pared back affair, with a strong focus on drawing the inside in. A simple shell poster in the kitchen is a lovely reminder of the nearby beach (and will help to find shell seekers identify their finds!). Source a similar one here*

Simple rattan furniture in the dining room helps to add a relaxed beach vibe to the space, while soft sheepskins make them feel a little more cosy!

In winter and colder summer days, Helle warms the cabin with the help of a wood-burning stove (something I'd love to install in my future cabin). Do you have one in your home?

A large jute rug (I recognise this one from IKEA) and light blue textiles add to the coastal vibe. 

I love the idea of using a jute rug on the wall as a headboard. I guess, it's really important to find a nice soft one - but it looks fab in this cottage! 

An outdoor bed? Sign me up! 

Bamboo furniture is always pretty - if you're interested in a similar look, keep an eye out for ones that can withstand all weather otherwise they'll quickly deteriorate. 

A popular addition to gardens across the world this winter: the outdoor fire pit! This one has been made extra cosy with a bench made from palettes and laden with cushions. So hyggeligt! 

Such a lovely, charming cabin! 

I love it how Helle has taken the opportunity to decorate the space in a completely different way from her city home

Could you imagine hanging here with friends or family, and a good book - all summer long? 

For more inspiration, check out the summer cottage archive - one of my favourites! 

Har det så fint! 

Niki

Photography: Helle Rye

*this post contains affiliate links which means if you click on a link and buy something I will make a very tiny commission, at no extra cost to you. Thank you for supporting My Scandinavian Home! 

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Our Tiny Swedish Holiday Cabin: Exterior Inspiration


Those of you who have been following My Scandinavian Home for a while (thank you!), will know that Per's family have a little summer cottage on the coast of North West Skåne. It was built by Per's grandparents in the 1930s and today, it's enjoyed by Per's Mother - who heads there for much of the summer. We also love to stay there whenever possible - at the weekends, over Easter and for several weeks in the summer. It's our very own little paradise, understated, raw, rugged and windswept. Days are spent sipping coffee, wondering through the pine forest or village in our dressing gowns to the water's edge, playing games while the rain comes down or chugging out to the island of Hallands Väderö (second picture down) by boat. Here are a few shots I've snapped with my phone over the years. I hope it'll give you an idea of the surrounding nature, and the simple life we lead at the cottage!




Tiny Cabin Location and Inspiration 



Per's Grandfather fell in love with the area just like we have many years later and built the little cottage (above) up on a hill near the church. Per's Mother, an avid reader of my blog (hej hej!), recalls playing in the meadows in front of the cottage as a child, and taking a 'morgondopp' (morning dip) in the sea. These days, the 'meadows' are occupied by summer houses, but Liv and Allie still love to run carefree down to the water for a swim, no matter the weather. 

The cottage itself is tiny, and if we're all in place - the sofa becomes a sofa bed and the children and their friends sleep on a bunkbed and a blow-up mattress. It works for now, but we'd love to spend more time there - and as the children grow-up, we'd love for their children to enjoy it as we do today! 

In Sweden, it's common to build tiny cabins in the grounds of a summer cottage to make space. Known as an 'Attefallshus', you are permitted to build a 25 square metre (269 square feet) cabin and, recently, also a 30m2 cabin (322 square feet) - known as a 'Komplimentbostadshus' (try pronouncing that!) in the grounds of your property (see restrictions here - in Swedish). It's the latter we're interested in since it will give us enough space for a family of four. This winter, we marked out a section of the lawn and the planning has finally begun! So exciting! 


We have earmarked this section of the garden beside an old oak tree running parallel along the fence to the neighbours' garden (with their kind permission) - which affords both properties some privacy.  

Cabin Exterior Inspiration

When Per and I brainstormed the look and feel of the cabin we decided against replicating the main house and instead were keen for the exterior to blend into the surroundings - and incorporate the rugged nature of the forest and coastline. Wood therefore felt like an obvious material for the exterior - and we love that it ages gracefully over time. The exact wood and tone is to be determined (watch this space) but we particularly love the look and feel of the cladding above and below. 

Since life at the cabin is about spending time outdoors and soaking up the surroundings, we're keen for the cabin to have large windows which draw the outdoors in and allow a seamlessness between the garden and the interior. Lately I've been partial to grid windows, seen below. 

This is obviously WAY bigger than 30m2, but more to demonstrate the windows I was talking about! 

Off-plan or Our Own Design? 

There are a fair few 'off-plan' cabin solutions available in Sweden, some of which create the entire cabin in their yard before dropping into place with a truck and crane. This sounds like a brilliant hassle-free option on paper, but  in practise, we have a really clear picture of what we were looking for - and none of them quite fit the bill. So began the search for an architect. More of which I'll share with you in my next 'Tiny Cabin' update along with the plans. 

In the meantime, I'd love to hear your thoughts. Do you like the wood exterior? Are you also a fan of these types of windows? Perhaps you have some experience of building a tiny cabin or house yourself and like to share some insight (as rookies, we'd be eternally grateful!). 

Here is a little more great 'tiny cabin' inspiration:


Oh, and the last cabin is actually a holiday home on the Isle of Skye - available to rent! I know! Scotland anyone?   

Wishing you all a lovely 'lillördag'! 

Niki

Photography credits: 1 - 9 Niki Brantmark / My Scandinavian home, 10. Krista Keltanen for the book Happy Homes, 11. Barn House Cabin 12. Light and Dwell 13. Wild croft on the Isle of Skye

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An Idyllic Fjord Side Summer Retreat in Norway

Today the weather gods have delivered horizontal snow mixed with rain here in Southern Sweden. Typically, we're still on our bikes, but it wasn't that fun getting to my studio I can tell you (I'm still thawing out!). But the light has returned, and that's what gives us hope spring is just around the corner. And after spring comes the wonderful Scandinavian summer. And with that in mind, I thought we could all dream about this idyllic summer retreat in Norway today! Captured by Norwegian brand Slettvoll as part of their spring-summer campaign, the fjord side cottage will have you dreaming of days on the water's edge under the midnight sun! 


The property has two separate buildings as far as I can see - a guest house (pictured top) and a main house - where the interior pictures were taken. With a setting like this, I'd be perfectly happy to wake up in either one - how about you? 

Sidenote: how beautiful is the outdoor furniture pictured above? You can find more info about it here

It's not always warm enough in the evenings to sit outside (when we were sailing last summer on Sweden's west coast, the temperatures varied between 12 and 15 degrees celsius (around the mid 50s Fahrenheit) for several weeks! BRRRR!) - but I wouldn't mind, if I had a view like this. 

I love how a bench with built-in storage doubles up as seating at the table. 



The calm, white interior decor is earthy and pared back, allowing the view to take centre-stage. 

Pretty much all the furniture in the picture is from Slettvoll - more info here




Beautiful! 

Could you imagine spending lazy summer days here? 

Actually, scrap that, I'd happily spend a week there right now,  snow, rain, gale and all! 

In an ode to all things Norwegian today, here are some other tours I love: 


Oh, how I miss this incredible country! I still dream about my trip to Hardanger in 2019 with Skandinavisk  and dream about returning with my family! 

Have you ever been to Norway? If so, I'd love to hear about your trip! 

Niki

Photography courtesy of Slettvoll - found via Planet Deco with thanks. 

PS This post is not sponsored, I just felt inspired by the pictures, and thought you might be too! 

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Charming Details In a Danish Allotment Cottage


'God morgen' as they say in Danish! How was your weekend? I read that today is referred to as 'blue Monday' - considered by some the saddest day of the year. Apparently, it's down to a number of factors including bad weather (check), long nights (check) and of course this year, a certain word beginning with C! Well, not on my watch friends, because we're going to be wrapped in a warm bubble of 'glæde' as we tour a charming kolonihavehus (allotment cottage) in the Danish countryside! It may be pared-back - but it's also full of warmth thanks to the carefully selected vintage furniture - as well as the small, joyful details which give this little space, a big heart! Welcome to Danish knitwear designer and interior stylist Gaia Brandt's world!


Are you familiar with the 'kolinihave' concept? These little Scandinavian cottages are built on allotments - and were originally designed to provide shelter in between toiling the soil. These days, they have become a picturesque summer holiday retreat for many city dwellers. I've shared more details about this type of Scandinavian housing here

Usually, there are tight restrictions on how many days a year you can stay - and the water is turned off between Autumn and springtime. But come summertime, these little cottage communities come alive and provide a perfect summer oasis! 


As with most Scandinavian summer cottages, the look here is simple, with a focus on bringing the outdoors in. 

Look closely though, and you'll spot lots of wonderful details - a unique pot here, a wall-mounted dolls house there, and lots of mobiles, which draw the eye upwards. 


A simple Danish rag rug helps to protect the wood floor in the kitchen. 


Playing with over-sized items helps to bring the living room area alive! 

Could that be a TV behind the sheet? 

An otherwise disused corner of the room has been transformed into a display area for a vintage collection of hearts, dried flowers and other ornaments. 



On warm summers day, the doors are thrown open so Gaia and her children can flit between the outdoors and inside. 


I bet many a strong coffee has been enjoyed right here!  


So lovely, don't you think? 

I can practically feel the warmth on my skin from the pictures (taken by Gaia's sister Kira Brandt - a talented photographer - for Danish magazine Boligliv

I'm also finding this tour so inspiring for the tiny cabin Per and I are planning to build this year (more to follow very soon!). 

Did you get any ideas for your own home? 

I forgot to mention that Gaia is a real dab hand at DIY / crafts. Check out her styling work for magazines here and see pictures of her latest home over on her instagram feed

And - for more inspiration to brighten up the start of your week, you might like to check out: 


Blue Monday? What blue Monday! 

Niki

Photography: Kira Brandt / styling Gaia Brandt for Boligliv - shared withy kind permission. 

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