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A stunning home on an island outside Stockholm

Do you have a dream home in mind? Or perhaps you are lucky enough to already live in it? I like my home and there are some great things about a modern space - can you see the 'but' coming?! But I do dream of living in an old house one day. And in my mind it looks exactly like Mari Stregnheilm Nord's home in the Stockholm archipelago. Just in case you need a reminder, here are some more pictures of Mari's beautiful home captured by Lina Östling. Mari's home, which she shares with hr husband and two young children, has been renovated using a palette of white, grey and green and furnished with a beautiful mix of vintage and antique finds as well as items found on travels. Let's take a tour...






Photography: Lina Östling (shared with kind permission). Stylist and home-owner: Mari Strengheilm Nord. Found via The Style Files with thanks.

So beautiful don't you think?

I especially love the kitchen (the table and chairs!). Since this picture was taken Mari has renovated and it now looks like this (with the floor painted in S 2000-N from Nordsjö. I also like the curtain room divider - perfect way of stopping room to room drafts and also adding a touch of cosiness!

This 'how to paint diamonds on the floor' guide is really helpful to get the same effect on your hallway (or elsewhere in your home). 

Source beautiful vintage industrial pendant lights like the ones shown in Mari's home here.

Another space that falls into my dream home category is this artist's home in a former school - the light! Could you live here?!

What does your dream home look like?

Have a lovely day!

PS Lina has such a beautiful blog

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Have You Got The Right Amount of Lighting in Your Home?

When it comes to home decor, what comes easy to you? I am a firm believer that everyone has their thing. And while I struggle with rugs (seriously, I can never get a handle on those things!), I've found lighting to be my superpower!  I think it's because I love lamps as decor and appreciate the way they can completely transform a room! Since moving to Sweden (coming up to 17 years ago now - gaaaah, where did the time go?) I've also realised how important it is to light up your home properly in the long, dark winter, just for your own sanity! To sum up: 

Here are 7 reasons why I love lighting:

1. It helps you to carry out daily tasks such as cooking and reading, as well as to find what you're looking for (saving you from walking out of the door wearing your child's bobble hat / your jumper inside out / terrifying make-up). 

2. Dimly lit, and soothing warm lighting helps you to relax

3. It makes your home feel more inviting / welcoming and comfortable (one off the reasons Scandinavians love to place lamps in the window)

4. It helps to highlight features in your home you love - and hide those you don't!

6. It helps to divide a room into different zones

7. The light itself can be a work of art

So, how does one create the perfect lighting in your home? I'm a firm believer in the 5-7 rule outlined in Frida Ramstedt's Interior Design Handbook. It stipulates that every room should have at least between five to seven lighting points - with some people even recommending up to nine! 

To really use lighting to its full advantage, it's great to cover: General lighting: a ceiling lamp that spreads ambient light across the room, Task lighting: a reading lamp, desk lamp or strong light over kitchen work surfaces. Spot lighting: lighting that directs itself to highlight a picture, bookcase or help create shadow on the wall. Atmospheric / decorative lighting: mood lighting, dimmable small lamps, candles etc.  

It's also important to use the right bulb - check out this guide for more. So much to think about! 

Time to take stock of my own lighting: 

I've had my Z1 overhead pendant lamp hanging in my sitting room for years. It's such a perfect light - when dialled up, it spreads light throughout the room without glare, and when dimmed, it sets the tone for a relaxed evening (while looking a little like a Thai sky lantern!). 

This pretty brass and marble lady is the Chloe lamp from Hudson Valley Lighting - used purely for mood lighting and brightening up a dark-is corner (although I could dial her up for semi-OK task lighting too).

I can't tell you how many questions I get about this Zuiver Shady two arm lamp. It's the perfect reading lamp and a family favourite. 

One of my treasured vintage pieces, I found the Jielde lamp* on Etsy a while back. Vintage lighting can be really tricky and often needs re-wiring - but your efforts will be rewarded. It's used to shed light on the table in this picture, but I also love to use it to highlight the bookcase or pictures (depending on how this corner has been arranged!). 

In the bedroom, my beloved Ferial lamp from Paris Au Mois D'aout. I am not sure if they are still making it, but they do produce similar ones. I love how it spreads light throughout the room and casts shadows on the wall. 

This elegant lady was handmade in the UK by a local craftsman over 20 years ago. She's followed me to Sweden and has stayed faithfully by myself ever since. I have to be honest, she's a fair-ish reading light but I'm not sure a serious lighting expert would approve! 

The Tip Table Lamp on my desk is a little saviour when the sun dips beneath the horizon - or I'm burning the midnight oil while Per sleeps! 


Look closely, and you'll spot the Vuelta table lamp* from Ferm Living on the shelves behind my desk - it has a built-in dimmer switch and looks lovely lit up in the evening.   

One that I haven't had the chance to photograph yet, but really love, is my glass table lamp from Hübsch. If you're looking for a lamp with a perfect, warm glow - this is your lady! 

It was so fun to take stock of what I have. Even so, I realise there's definitely room for more (perfect excuse for a little light shopping this weekend!). 

What's the lighting situation in your home? Do you need more? Any lighting fails? Or great tips and tricks you'd love to share? 

If you're also planning on taking stock of what you have this weekend, you might also like to consider the following: 

- Dimmer switches are your best friend
- Angle or adjust the height of your lamps to ensure you don't get any glare
- Vary the height of the lights in each room to add feeling and depth: e.g. place on the floor, on surfaces such as low tables, shelves, windowsills, wall mounted or hung from the ceiling. 

Right folks. I do believe it's the weekend - wooohoooo! I can't say I'm doing anything too exciting! But it'll be nice to have a lie-in, pick out some paint colours with Liv for her bedroom and perhaps go for a walk along the beach. And enjoy a couple glasses of wine no doubt. 

Skål to the weekend! 

Niki

*some of the links contain affiliate partnerships which means I might make a teeny tiny amount if you click and buy something - at no extra cost to you. Also, a few of the lamps featured are press gifts. 

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A Dutch Family Settle In A Charming House in the Forests of Värmland, Sweden


Some days I spend hours looking for homes - other days they simply pop up in my inbox (hooray!). Today is one of those lucky days. Photographer Chantal Bruienne-Buil emailed me these beautiful images of her home in Sunne, Värmland. Originally from The Netherlands, Chantal and her husband and their daughter emigrated to Sweden 14 months ago in pursuit of a quieter life surrounded by nature ("one of the best decisions ever").  After a period of time in Småland, the Dutch family were drawn to this early 20th century house in the middle of a forest in central-west Sweden. I caught up with Chantal to find out more about their move, transforming their house into a home and the inspiration behind their online print / poster shop Loveprinted.



What attracted you to the house?
While house hunting, we saw this 1909 build and felt immediately smitten by it. It's in the middle of a big forest with all the freedom and peace and quiet we were dreaming of. The perfect place for my husband, our five-year-old daughter and I! So of course, we put in a bid and the house was ours one week later!

Source similar vintage pendant lights on Etsy*, Stokke chair (green)*, Kitchen aid*

How did you turn the house into your home?
Never before has a house felt like home so quickly. I immediately knew what our home should look like. So, making decisions wasn't difficult at all. We love white and wood and natural colours you find in nature so we used these plus a touch of gold. Decorating our home has been a real treat and I love how it all turned out. It really suits our lifestyle. 


Tell us about your choice of wallpaper
I've been wanting to use lovely William Morris & Co. and Engblad & Co wallpapers for ages and now we had the perfect home for it. The funny thing was that we took down a wall in the living room and were surprised to find layers and layers of very old wallpaper and even some bits of newspaper dating back to 1912! 

What inspires your work as a photographer?
As a real nature lover, I like to be outdoors: to grill over an open fire, enjoy long walks with my family and capture the Swedish countryside on my camera. I wanted to share this - I mean if it makes me happy surely it must make other people happy as well, right?! That was why I started Loveprinted, an online poster webshop where we sell our nature photography and graphical prints. It's a place where I combine my passion for photography, graphic design and interior design.  



Thank you so much to Chantal for sharing your lovely home with us! 

See more pictures of her lovely home on @movingslowly.se and @loveprinted

I'm really enjoying seeing wallpaper pop up more and more in Swedish homes (check out this archive  for a load of Scandinavian homes featuring beautiful wallpaper!). Could you imagine using wallpaper like this in your home?

Ha det så fint!

Niki

Photography by Chantal Bruienne-Buil (with a little colour re-touch by me!)
Affiliate links marked with *

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An artist's home in a former factory

Iiiiit's Friday - yaaaay! It's been a very relaxed-bohomian week here on My Scandinavian Home with so many exciting homes full of personality - I hope you've felt inspired? To round up the feel of the week I thought we'd head to Melbourne, Australia and the home of artist Saskia Folk in a converted factory. Think industrial with a relaxed vibe and the odd splash of colour. The perfect home to complete the week!









Photographer: Derek Swalwell shared with kind permission. Stylist: Heather Nette King , found via House of C with thanks.

How I'd love to have a home in a converted factory like this - high ceilings, exposed bricks painted white, graciously worn wood floor, industrial pendant lights...that freestanding bath?!

Get the look: similar vintage industrial-style pendant lights here,  Source beautiful Boucherouite rugs here.

Also love these factory conversion homes here, here and here.

If you feel like dropping it all and moving to the Swedish countryside - this stunning mansion has just come on the market - oh the things you could do?! Or perhaps go one step further like this young Norwegian guy who quit his job to go hiking across Norway with his husky - beautifully captured here on Instagram.

Back tomorrow with a very exciting give-away set to brighten up your weekend (there's a clue in there...).  Oooo, what could it be?!

Hope you have a wonderful Friday! See you tomorrow...

PS I've had a few questions about the beautiful colours in yesterday's home and have since updated the post with some paint colours which are a good match.

Cosy Danish Outdoor Lights - Handmade Using Recycled Glass!

Partnership*
Determined to make this autumn and winter as cosy as possible, I've added some new lights to our little backyard. After all, once the sun sets, it becomes very dark, very early, very quickly, and there's nothing like the warm glow of lights to lift your spirits! These beautiful ReUse light chains are from Pernille Bülow - a small atelier on the Danish island of Bornholm.  Regular readers will know that Pernille Bülow is a big favourite of mine and I have SO many beautiful handmade pieces from this atelier around my home (including SKY lamps and Odin tableware).  But there's something EXTRA special about these outdoor ReUse light chains, and the clue is in the name. Read on to discover more! 

True to Pernille Bulow style, each of the 9 pendants are mouth blown and handmade in the workshop in Svaneke, Bornholm (if you're ever on the island, you must pay a visit - I love the shop!). This means that each glass light is ever so slightly unique - one of the wonderful hallmarks of handmade pieces. 

I used two sets in our little back yard to create a little extra glow (the chains are three metres long and attachable, so you can easily string together as many sets of lights as you wish which is really handy).

Best of all? The ReUse collection is made of waste from Novo Nordisk, a Danish pharmaceutical company that has large amounts of excess borosilicate glass from their diabetes drug production. Rather than going to waste, Pernille Bülow remelts and moulds the glass into beautiful objects, including these ReUse light chains and a pendant lamp

The light chain also come with 9 2 W energy optimised LED bulbs which are CE marked. 

In order to really put them to the test, I invited a few friends over from the neighbourhood for an autumn evening alfresco - (any excuse!).  

It was a bit of a 'knytkalas' - where everyone (including my dear friend Ullis - above - and interior designer Jessica Ward - below) brought whatever they had in their fridge and wine cabinet! 

We had such a mysig (cosy) evening under the warm glow of the lights - even if coats were a must! Brrrr!

Roll on more autumn evenings al fresco! And even when it's time to move indoors, we'll still enjoy the twinkle through the window! 

If you'd love these lights for your outdoor space, the ReUse light chain is available to pre-order here  - and will be available from mid-November. There's a list of countries Pernille Bülow ships to here

I'm curious - can you still sit outside in the evenings in your country? 

Wishing you a great day! 

Niki

*This post is a paid partnership with Pernille Bülow. All words and images are my own and I only ever work with brands I love and think you will too! Thank you for supporting the small Nordic businesses that make My Scandinavian Home possible.  

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An Inspiring Finnish Home With an Element of Surprise

It was such a long while since I featured a Finnish home, wasn't it?! I have absolutely no idea why since I love Finnish style. In fact, one of the highlights of my second book The Scandinavian Home was that I got to visit Finland for the first time and photograph two inspiring homes. Naturally both had saunas (they are such an integral part of daily life that there are said to be more saunas in Finland than cars!) - but with one being in the countryside and one in the city the two styles were very different. The home of interior design and lifestyle blogger Sini Liikala, her husband and two children reminds me very much of the second place we visited. It's modern, bright and minimalist with a beautiful, large open-plan living space.  But it also harbours an element of the unexpected...

In the kitchen, sleek, white kitchen cabinets from Finnish brand Topi Keittiot  (IKEA sells similar) are broken up by a black mat faucet and sink (both Tapwell) . The shelves above are laden with ceramic and glassware including the classic Oiva Stoneware Teapot* by Marimekko (loving the gentle silhouettes).

I like how Sini has combined marble (the large square tiles are from Tarratinta) with wood flooring to create a distinct kitchen zone and add a lorry load of warmth! I'm not sure if you're thinking what I'm thinking: how about stubbing a toe in the night?! On closer inspection however, it looks like the wood floor has a soft gradual edge. The oak bar stools are from Hay and the lights are the Artek A110 pendant (FYI!). 






 "I think our home is quite a typical modern Finnish house. Nowadays people like to build modern houses with big open spaces, large windows and minimalist shapes. Although, I still think our home is quite unique and looks like us."




The family dining area includes some real Scandinavian classics including the Artek beehive light and wishbone chairs. I like how the inclusion of a black chair balances the dining area with the black door behind (US readers - check out Target's budget friendly look alike!). The white storage cabinet in the background (and below) is by Finnish brand Lundia.






"The best thing about our home is that we have a big open space which incorporates a kitchen, dining room and living room. It means we can all be together as a family but there is still enough space for everyone to do their own things if needed."



Despite the open space, Sini has created a cosy spot for the family to relax (I bet it's even toastier when the fire's going!) using layers of textiles (including a Beni ourain rug), plants and a raft of new nordic design pieces such as a pink Ferm Living Plant Box (I've got my eye on that, how about you?!) and the Around coffee table.

"I think that the best interiors come with time, and years bring different interesting layers to it. I usually buy furniture that I hope will last decades and tell the story of our home to our visitors."

 "Every interior guide says that all the rooms should be in 'perfect harmony' with each other to create a complete look. I am quite a 'safe' decorator who loves neutral tones but I wanted to have one room with a completely different look." 


To achieve the darker look,  Sini covered the back wall with bold floral wallpaper from Ellie Cashman Design (if you have the time you must check out this insta feed!). The rest of the room has been painted in Stiffkey Blue from Farrow & Ball. A rattan pendent from Bloomingville, and an IKEA bench and cabinet add a soft, light touch to the overall look.

"I really love our bedroom because it's like going to a completely different land! It's dark and kinda romantic and that's what I like in a bedroom. People are always so surprised when they enter the room! They're like "wow! this is awesome!" it's not what you'd expect from our home when you look at the other rooms. And that's why I love it so much, it's my hidden flower garden."



"We have black window frames so I figured black doors would go well with them. I also wanted to add an 'edge' to the interior since most of our walls are white. I have not regretted them, I love them!"


Thank you so much for inviting us into your home Sini! Love that you have broken the design rules and followed your heart - that's what makes a house a home - don't you think?

If you'd like to know where more of the items give me a shout in the comment section below and I'll do my best to help. Sini is also great at tagging her images over on instagram, so you can always check there too (and see more of her home over on her blog!)!

If you fancy taking a peek at more homes in Finland today, how about this home in a converted factory,  a living space where old meets new and the calm Finnish home of Anna Pirkola. Yup, the Finns know what they're doing when it comes to interiors!

A little bit of Finnish trivia for you too - did you know that when a baby is born in Finland they are given a box which includes every single item thing they might need for the best start in life? The box itself is designed to be slept in too! You can find out more about what it contains and why they provide it here (it makes for a fascinating read!).

Have a lovely day all!

All photography © Sini Liikala shared with kind permission. 

*My Scandinavian Home posts include some affiliate links.

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