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Alva's Warm and Inviting Swedish Country Home and Farm Shop

Alva Herdevall is a Swedish author (Heirloom Skills: a complete guide to modern homesteading - which has been hugely popular in Swedish, is now available to pre-order in English) as well as a self-confessed plant lover, homesteader & permaculture designer". Once a city girl (Alva also lived in Malmö for many years), the writer moved to Krusenbergs farm in Uppsala where she and her partner Anders Rydell have created a country life with their small children and four legged friend. 

Days are spent 'odling' (toiling the soil and growing flowers, fruit and vegetables) - the results of which include a beautiful array of sunflowers, sweet peas, peonies, dahlia and other blooms as well as great gluts homegrown tomatoes, courgettes, beans and squash. Whatever the family have left over is preserved for the winter or sold through their honesty store and 'pick your own' farm. Fresh eggs and honey are also available to buy. 

Inside, evidence of the recent harvest can be seen overflowing in the kitchen and as a centre piece on the dining table and brightening up windowsills throughout the home. Here's a peek into Alva's beautiful world in the Swedish countryside. 

In September the forests and fields are ripe with edible delicacies. Swedes love to pickle and preserve whatever they have leftover and savour pickled cucumber, beetroot and other preserves on sandwiches or as a side dish throughout winter. Alva has a larder full of homemade jars - many of which she lists in her book. 

Do you preserve fruit and vegetables too? If so, I'd love to hear about some of your favourites!

Alva's home is a wonderful, warm, eclectic mix of vintage and antique finds, books, plants, pattern and prints. 

Yellow kitchen cabinets and a kilim rug in reds and blues bring warmth and cosiness to the kitchen. 

Anders built the outdoor kitchen and table, now laden with homegrown produce. Flowers and other produce are also sold through their farm shop (below). 

What a lovely life!

See more pictures from Alva's home and garden over at @krusenbergsodlarna and find out more about their store, wedding floristry and workshops here

Does it make anyone else want to move to the countryside? There's nothing quite like a little dreaming on a Monday!

Take a tour of other Scandinavian country homes in the country home archive

Stor kram! 


1, 6, 7, 8, 11, 14, 15 @krusenbergsodlarna
4, 5 by Roland Persson for book Modern Självhushållning published by Natur & Kultur Fakta.
2, 3, 9, 10, 12, 13 Idha Lindhag 
Shared with kind permission. 

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Quick Ways to Elevate your Home in an Instant

It's natural to covet homes with magnificent architecture. And I certainly spend copious amounts of time dreaming about living in a property with period features and exposed wood beams. But really, it's the furniture and accessories - and the way you display them, that make a property feel like a home. In fact, a few simple tricks can help to elevate your home  - and lift your spirits in an instant! 

This Swedish maisonette in a former bakery is a fine example of this. Vintage tables, chairs, and lamps provide the core of a warm and relaxed living space, while collections of art, LPs, books, plants and throws complete the personal look and feel. 

Keep a look out for the use of 'blank space' which gives the rooms an airy look and help to focus the eye on smaller vignettes - and the many other smart ways to display your possessions which would work equally well in a rental space! 

Since the upper floor is on street level, the owners have put up strategically placed film to prevent prying eyes, while still allowing the light to flow in. Meanwhile a lovely old bowl and chopping board make a beautiful permanent fixture in the centre of the table. 

While the kitchen units might be clean and minimalist, open storage in the form of shelving, a trolley and hooks provide a great way to display some of your favourite pieces, for a relaxed, lived in feel. 

I have always wanted a wine fridge - there is something so decadent about them. Do you have one?

Sheepskin throws* and blankets are ideal for creating a cosy atmosphere come autumn. I am also a big fan of indoor climbing plants for adding lots of greenery - especially when the leaves start to fall outside. 

Many of us have art lying around - on the floor, in drawers or storage, that are waiting to go up. Sometimes it's the fear of creating a hole in the wall only to realise you've hung it in the wrong place, other times you simply haven't found the right spot for it. 

I'm a firm believed that it's so much better to have something on the wall than leave it blank for fear of 'getting it wrong'. This is why I love the gallery above. There's something wonderfully adhoc about it: pictures propped on top of other pictures, frames that are slightly askew. And it works! So let's all challenge ourselves to hang that work of art / framed (our unframed photo) or sculpture today, just looking at it will give us a little lift as we go about our day! 

Overflowing book shelves - that's what I like to see! Why not make a statement and pull out some of your favourite books and present them like art?

Simply hanging out some of your favourite items of clothing can be enough to brighten your mood - plus you can change it up depending on the day, week, or season. 

A marble tray in the bathroom is perfect for gathering all your bits and bobs in one place for a neater look while woven boxes and a candle add warmth to the space. Scandinavians love to light candles in the bathroom when they have guests - and you'll often find them in restaurant and cafe toilets too! 

Finally, simple, removable towel hooks are great for hand towels - and mean you don't need to drill through the tiles. 

I hope this home has given you a few quick and simple ways you can update your living space today! 

Did you see the cosy cottage by the sea on Monday? And also, for more budget ideas, take a peek at my budget bathroom make-over

Wishing you a wonderful Wednesday! It's a bit gloomy here in Malmö so maybe I'll hang out one of my bright summer dresses - just to bring a little sunshine to my bedroom! 


Photography Lina Östling

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Inspiration from a Swedish Attic Apartment with Low Angled Ceilings

Good morning friends, how are you today? I'm stopping by to share this Swedish apartment which has some perfect inspiration for tight, angled spaces and how to fill darker homes with light! 

Nestled under the roof on the top floor of beautiful house dating back to 1913, the owners of this apartment have worked around the angled ceilings to ensure a truly lovely living space. Let's take a closer look at some of the elements at play. 

The kitchen units have a staggered height, and where no units would fit, a shelf has been used instead to ensure every inch of space can be used. 

Two skylights have been installed to ensure natural light. Try Velux for similar. 

Dormer windows are a perfect solution to draw in lots of light and carving out standing space. 

There are solutions available for every shape and sized space these days. A made-to-measure glass door and windows help to ensure a flow of light between the rooms to capitalise on any natural sunlight that enters the home, while a curtain can be pulled across for privacy and a cosy feel in the bedroom. 

The doors open right out for a light and airy feel. 

Low art in the bedroom adds a decorative touch while the bed is tucked under the ceiling and a dormer window. 

A closet can be seen tucked in behind the glass door above. 

In Sweden, it's common to find washing machines in the bathroom (another popular alternative for apartments is a communal washing room in the basement). In England, it's popular to have washing machines in the kitchen. Where do you tend to have your machines? 

I have always loved the idea of art in the bathroom, it adds such a cosy, personal touch. 

A window seat in the stairwell capitalised on natural light from the window. 

Such a pretty house - I love the garden with a communal outdoor dining area! 

It's very common for Swedish apartments to have an inner garden where you'll find a shared dining area, barbecue and children's play area. Some even have herb gardens! 

Working with awkward angles takes some extra thought and problem solving, but I think this home is a great example of how you can find a solution for every shape and size today! 

I particularly liked the glass wall and door designed to fit the sloped ceiling - this could be a perfect solution for our top floor! 

I hope you found some nice ideas for your own home here today!

Speaking of dark spaces, I'll be working on our windowless downstairs loo today. Per and I have been doing a budget make-over using a splash of tile paint as well as a few other touches. I am hoping to share the makeover with you on Friday, but we'll see how we get on, DIY updates always takes longer (and creates way more mess) than you think, right? 

Wishing you all a great Wednesday! 


Styling: Copparstad. Photography: Boukari. For sale via Historiska Hem. Found via Nordroom with thanks. 

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Books, Art and a Cool Painting Technique in a Swedish Home

It's Fredag (Friday) people! Woohooo! I am going to hazard a guess and say 50% of swedes are working at home today. Basically, anyone who can! It's a day where homes are prepped between meetings in order to have everything ready for 'fredagsmys' (a cosy Friday evening at home involving tacos and a movie), possibly the most important event of the week! 

This fabulous funkis home in Gröndal, Gothenburg measuring 85 m2 (914 ft sq) is just the place I can imagine enjoying 'fredagsmys'. Books galore, musical instruments and art are just a few of the things that stood out to me right away. But take a closer look and there are other great interior elements at play. 

Flexible Elfa shelving (which I have added to Allie's room and also used in the laundry room and attic) is ideal for a large wall of books!  

I also love the classic vintage drop leaf table (source a similar one here*), which adds plenty of charm to the space. 

The living space is entirely open-plan with the dining area, sitting room and home office all in one - meaning everyone can be together yet doing their own thing. 

One of my favourite lamps - a Gubi semi pendant, hangs over the coffee table. 

I love this gallery wall, full of fascinating original paintings. While at the Formland design fair last week, I noticed that there's a strong movement away from posters and prints in glass frames to original artwork on canvas and other fabrics. A welcomed move! 

Plate racks have also become increasingly popular - as seen in Kristin's French kitchen last week, and here in the open shelving. 

Wall racks are a great idea for cookbooks - as seen here, it ensures they are ready to be perused over a morning coffee! 

In the bedroom, the owners have used old fashioned 'stänkmålning' on the walls - a method of flicking paint on the walls with a paintbrush. This was traditionally used by the Swedish lower classes who couldn't afford wallpaper but still wanted to decorate their walls. You often see it in summer cottages. In this room, the splashes have a wonderful contemporary feel! 

Wood abound in the shared children's room - and so much room to create too. 

What a fabulous home with so many interesting details, don't you think?

Are there any ideas which you could imagine applying to your own home? 

Check out more swedish homes this weekend here. 

I hope you have a fabulous few days, see you right back here on Monday, when I'll be sharing a beautiful French chateau!


Photography: Utsikten foto
Styling: Utsikten home
For sale via Historiska Hem

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