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A Charming Swedish Allotment Cottage In Summer Time

If there's one thing the Scandinavians are good at, it's a staycation. It could be because the system is set up to give people a long summer holiday (3 weeks in a row is very normal), it could also be that everyone has waited so long for the good weather to arrive that the last thing they want to do is miss it! Some may stay home in the city (or countryside), others might visit friends and family, and others again might head to their summer cottage or 'kolonistuga' (a small house on an allotment that you're allowed to stay in over a limited period). I touched upon the latter a few weeks ago when I showed a wonderful little artist's cottage in Copenhagen. And today, I stumbled across this pretty abode! Located on aptly named 'Spenatgången' ('spinach aisle'), the one bedroom cottage has everything you need for a summer's day (an easy chair, a radio and a vintage tea set!) and reflects the simple, back to basic lifestyle that so many love to enjoy here in summertime.  After all, who needs a load of fuss around you when you have an abundance of light?! 



Look at the floor! Loving this mint hue - something to consider if you opt for a white interior! It also took me a while to spot the simple plug-in hob on the counter-top!






I can just imagine the owners toiling the earth before rewarding themselves with a cup of tea (actually... make that an extra strong coffee if I know my Swedish friends right!) in the deckchairs! 

As the Swedish proverb goes 'borta bra, men hemma bäst' (away is good, but being at home is best) - and when I look at this little cottage, these words certainly ring true. 

Could you imagine spending your summers here? Bet you know what I'm going to say! Yep, this charming allotment cottage in Gothenburg is for sale! Read more about it here if you're curious! 


Here's to a simple summer! 

Niki

Photography courtesy of Helins Mäklarbyrå with thanks.

I have been reading all the new comments that came in over the weekend on my reflection post. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on such an important topic, I'm proud to be part of this community.

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A Beautiful Danish Cabin By The Sea Becomes a Lockdown Haven

I'm so happy you enjoyed the Swedish summer cottage yesterday - someone on facebook even said they were keen to buy it, how fun would that be? We could all go to stay! Since the sun is still shining in Scandinavia I thought I'd stick with the summer cottage theme, and transport you to a wonderful, earthy cabin in Smidstrup, a small fishing village near Gilleleje (which I've had the pleasure of visiting many times by boat), just North of Copenhagen. The cabin belongs to Simone Polk Dahl, who's beautiful, golden Copenhagen apartment I featured not long ago. In the summer months, Simone and her family swap city life for this lovely oasis. I caught up with the artist and interior stylist to find out more about how it has become her haven during lockdown, where she sources her vintage furniture and what it's been like to swap life on the 5th floor for a small cabin by the sea. 

When did you buy the house?
We bought the house four years ago.

Have you carried out any renovation work?
We have not done that much with it besides building a terrace and painting over the hemp wallpaper and the 80s lookalike wood ceilings. 


Where do you find most of your furniture? 
The majority of our furniture comes from the local flea markets up here. You can find some real treasures! 


Do you look out for specific pieces?
Since it's a house from the sixties, I try to find pieces from the same period. Examples include our coffee table and the lounge chair by Bernt Pedersen which I picked up for 300 DKK (around €40) at a thrift store. The sofa is an old one which brought up here from our apartment - and is also a sixties piece by Erik Jøgensen.  

How often do you visit your cabin?
We spend most weekends here and have staying here for the past five weeks during the Corona lockdown. We have really appreciated having a garden to relax in and the sea close by for a calm, cold dip.  

It sounds like the perfect haven! Has your life changed during this period?
I was so happy living in a small space up here, that I really considered selling our apartment and moving to this little house permanently. When you live on the 5th floor, it's feels like paradise to be able to open the door and be outside. I have found myself getting quite nerdy about the garden too. I have a nightly check on all the flowers and trees to see if they've grown during the special spring season. I also learned to run up here and did so every second day without exception. Now it's back to the 5th floor only having a ton of stairs as my daily exercise!! 

Thank you for sharing more about your life at this wonderful little house Simone! It's absolutely beautiful! 

***
Did you see the wall unit with all the shells? When I hold talks (or write books) about Scandinavian design I often refer to the way Scandinavians take a beautifully subtle approach to bringing the outside in. For example, when you live by the sea it can be tempting to go all out and add sea themed elements to your home such as fabrics with anchor or boat themes, 'gone fishing' signs etc, when actually all that's needed (in my mind at least) is shells or pebbles picked up during a stroll along the beach, a piece of driftwood on a table top or wildflowers plucked from the roadside. 

Some great examples can also be found in this feature: 15 Coastal Living Ideas To Steal From A Breath-taking Danish Home

Is there anything that stood out to you?

In case you missed it, you can take a peek inside Simone's beautiful Copenhagen apartment here. And find more inspiration on her fab instagram feed @polkenstudio

Have a lovely day, 

Niki

My thoughts are with what's happening in America right now.  My Instagram will be blank today as part of #blackouttuesday in support of justice for people of colour and against racism. 

Photography courtesy of Simone Polk Dahl - shared with kind permission. 

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An Idyllic Swedish Summer Cottage In a Former Telegraph Station

Summertime in Sweden. Time for me to start obsessing over buying a summer cottage on the island off Gotland. If I had it my way, I'd be on a Baltic Sea ferry chugging out to the island on the first day of the school holidays. There are two key issues though. Firstly, Per is a sailor and secondly the island is all but closed to visitors this year (at least, under Swedish government recommendation). So, I'll do what I do best (please do join me) - dream! And this idyllic limestone property is today's object of desire! Located in Storsudret near the southern tip, this genuine Gotland limestone cottage was once a telegraph station. The owners have renovated it using a subtle palette of soothing light greys and greens, while being careful to maintain its late 19th century charm. Did I mention it's also a stone's throw from the coast and a few hundred metres from a bakery? Oh, how I'd love to spend my summer here. If you snap it up (yes, it's on the market) - can I drop by for a crepe (sounds random, but this is one of the culinary delights of the island!). There's no need to decide right away - take a look through the pics and dream a little first! 

I love that the interior has been kept beautifully simple and pared down in a palette of soft grey and earthy green, while the exposed wood beams add plenty of warmth.

As with all Scandinavian summer cottages, the nature takes centre stage - and life moves outside whenever the weather allows. 

Clever use of patterned tiles help to protect the wood floor from constant comings and goings. 


These antique Swedish benches are popular in summer cottages since they double up as storage, aren't they lovely?




This is the rustic entrance to a smaller outhouse on the grounds - which is ideal for extended family or visitors. I love the rag rug, clogs and sheepskin. You can't really get more Swedish than this! 




The simplicity of this bathroom is typical of an island where people come to enjoy a back-to-basics lifestyle There is a distinct rustic vibe throughout the island - it's entirely unique! 

What do you reckon? Could you imagine spending your summers here? A visit in the winter might also be on the cards: listening to the distant sound of the waves of the Baltic Sea thundering onto the rugged coastline, while enjoying a book by the fire. 

Sold? It's currently on the market here

Prefer a more unusual dwelling? How about this windmill that's also for sale?! 

I hope this cottage has put as little spring in your step for the start of the week. In case you'd like to see a few more Gotland cottages, put your feet up and get misty-eyed over a rustic summer cottage (available to rent!), an island retreat and a beautiful limestone farmhouse

Have a great start to the week friends! 

Niki

Photography courtesy of Handelsbanken.

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A Danish Summer Cottage Oasis on North Zealand

It's Friday, the sun is shining here in the Öresund region - and it finally feels like summer has arrived!  Yay! In two weeks, school will be out, and - government guidelines permitting (in Sweden it's not currently recommended to travel more than 1-2 hours) - many are hoping this all blows over so they can head to their summer cottages to relax and enjoy the nature! Tine and Christian Hertz live in Copenhagen, but when time permits, they hop in the car with their children and swap urban life for a summer oasis in Tisvilde, North Zealand, Denmark. Acquiring a summer cottage in the picturesque village had been a lifelong dream - and when a small house came on the market, Tine and Christian jumped at the chance. On the small side, the pair built on an extension and carried out a loft conversion in order to make room for the entire family and guests. Today, the family can relax in a rustic, light-filled space where the outdoors merges with the indoors. Ready to transport yourself to a Danish summer oasis? Iben and Niels Ahlberg paid a visit and took these pictures: 









Absolutely beautiful! 

I love the back-to-basics feel and the way double doors can be thrown open to the garden on a sunny day. 

Is there anything that stood out to you? 

I have to say, the surrounding area is stunning (I've had the pleasure of visiting several times and photographed two cottages there for my book The Scandinavian Home). A true summer paradise! 

Up for a little more Danish summer cottage inspiration today? It would be rude not to when the sun is shining so brightly here today!  


Right folks, that's it from me this week. Thank you so much for stopping by (I've loved reading all your comments, especially with regards to my wood floor yesterday). 

Wishing you a wonderful, relaxing weekend - I hope the sun shines for you!

Niki

Photography: Iben and Niels Ahlberg - shared with kind permission. Incidentally, if you're looking for prints - check out their online shop North and Space

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