I am starting a new home tour series here on the blog where I will be sharing a selection of different Nordic style homes in different cities and countries. My intention is to show you how people get that Scandinavian feeling and look no matter where they are in the world. First up, we are heading to Australia and paying a visit to Maria who is the woman behind Scandihome.
Maria was born and bred in Finnish Lapland and moved to Sydney in 2005 where she now lives with her husband and their 5-year-old daughter. Her professional background is actually in geography, but some ten years ago she started doing styling and photography (first food and lifestyle, then gradually interiors) and never looked back. This Scandinavian design ambassador in Australia has a stunning bright home with a neutral colour scheme and natural materials which I was very intrigued to learn more about.
Q1 // How would you describe your home and your interior style?
First and foremost our home needs to be functional. I believe in investing in good quality pieces that we can keep for a long time. I prefer natural materials and neutral colours, as they are timeless and always beautiful.
Q2 // What inspires you when it comes to interior and your home?
I am always inspired by light and nature. Natural light is very important to me and I love the way it changes during the day. You can see evergreen trees from all our windows and I love this aspect of having the nature so close.
Q3 // What is your favourite room / area of your home and why?
Our bedroom. It has a high ceiling, big windows with a beautiful view over the hills, and a door to the balcony. It has beautiful natural light and an airy feel. I keep the space really simple in both furniture and colours, so the space feels calm and relaxing.
Q4 // What piece of furniture or decor is most precious to you and why?
I think it must be our Fritz Hansen Super-Elliptical dining table. I bought it second hand and it had been in one family for over 20 years. I want to keep it for as long as I can and it is one area where we gather not just to eat, but to do crafts and homework with our daughter, read stories or just sit down with a cup of tea.
Q5 // If you could start renovating or re-decorating your home today, what would you do differently?
We are planning on opening up our attic space, and turning it into a home office. I hope we can get this done and make the most of the space up there. There are lots of other things I’d like to get done as well, but it seems a little wasteful to change something that is fully functional.
Q6 // What is your favourite current interior trend?
I don’t follow trends, as I prefer thinking longer-term about all interior related decisions. I can get inspired by seasonal colours, for example, but I don’t go out of my way to accommodate them into our home.
Q7 // Why do you think the Scandinavian interior style is so popular?
I think people are attracted to the simplicity and timelessness of it. Neutral colour scheme and natural materials are always attractive and people find a certain serenity about them.
Q8 // What are some of your favourite Scandinavian interior and decor brands?
There are so many I admire for their long history and craftsmanship skills. One of my favourites is Nikari, a sustainable Finnish brand creating the most beautiful wooden pieces. I also love the textiles from Lapuan Kankurit, another Finnish favourite.
Q9 // What is your best decorating tips for anyone wanting to create a Scandinavian style in their home?
Instead of copying a certain style and buying the latest pieces, take a look at what you already have; simplify and create a harmonious feeling that flows through your home. Then go outside and pick a few seasonal branches or flowers to bring in the final touch.
Q10 // How do you like to relax, how do you hygge?
I love tea and books. Sometimes hygge means cuddling with my daughter and reading her a story.
I also love a candlelight, early in the morning before the sunrise.
Q11 // How do you find that Scandinavian feeling in your daily life?
For me nature is essential – and I think this stems from my childhood growing up in Lapland. We are fortunate to live close to large areas of forest (or bush, as they call it here in Australia) and water (the ocean) – these natural elements are essential in reminding me of home.
// Photo credit: Scandihome