You may have just got your head around hygee, but there’s a new Scandinavian design style on everyone’s radar. Melbournians fell in love with the Scandi design style and more recently the concept, hygee (a Danish term meaning ‘cosiness’). But, now it appears the Swedish philosophy lagom, meaning ‘just the right amount’, is set to dominate the interior design space.


What is Lagom?

Lagom, pronounced ‘la’ as in ‘bar’ and ‘gom’ as in ‘prom’, is a Swedish concept focusing on a whole approach to life. Unlike hygge, which is a momentary state of bliss promoting warmth and comfort, lagom is a way of living.

Definition of lagom

It focuses on moderation and the ‘less is more’ philosophy, creating that perfect balance between not enough and too much. The emphasis is on buying quality, timeless pieces and living with less clutter. Interiors are more restrained and favour a curated style. Simpler colour schemes are adopted, practicality is at the fore and accessories are kept to a minimum.

Lagom encourages people to enter life in the slow lane and enjoying everything it has to offer, just with a little more self-restraint. You can indulge in delights like champagne or chocolate without the guilt. But instead of devouring a large block or an entire bottle of champagne, lagom encourages you to have only two pieces or a glass of bubbles. Devoted lagom-ites know when enough is enough and they are at their happiest adopting a more sustainable way of living.


How you can bring Lagom into your home?

Regardless of the style of home, you can easily adopt the lagom look into your interior. And while it does lean towards a minimalist aesthetic, there are plenty of ways you can add personality and warmth to your home.

White bedroom with a big hanging lamp and a plant in a Scandinavian home


Here are a few suggestions to transform your space Swedish style:


1. Adopt a neutral palette

Lagom spaces are often calm and clean, while still feeling inviting. It’s rare to see a lot of different colours or patterns in a lagom interior. Whites, greys, pastels and earthy tones work well in harnessing the lagom feeling. Stick to just a few key colours, but introduce a variety of tones to build up warmth and texture so as not to create a space that’s too clinical or dull. If you feel your space needs more warmth, introduce natural timbers, leathers, or fabric with a textural weave.


2. Focus on practicality

A bathroom with a bath tub, featuring a 1940s Rene Gabriel chair

An interior that encourages the lagom way of living is practical. The design of the room and the objects within supports its purpose. Impractical furniture or pieces that are highly ornate are less sort after. Instead, lagom inspires homeowners to choose furniture that suits the size of the space, and pieces that are timeless and functional. Consider if the furniture encourages the room to flow, if it allows you to easily circulate and meets your needs. Opting for furniture that works with your lifestyle and interior rather than overcomplicating the design will help you embrace this way of living.


3. Accessorise with items that bring you joy

While the lagom concept means you accessorise with less stuff than the Danish style hygee, it doesn’t mean you can’t buy objects for your home. Instead of buying items on impulse, the philosophy encourages you to consciously shop for items that bring you joy and add beauty to your space. Choose pieces that are timeless, instead of shopping for accessories that will only last a season or trend. Editing is also key to achieving the lagom inspired look. Rather than clutter their space with many accessories, lagom-ites tend to style the items on their own. That way, you’re more likely to notice its beauty and appreciate the object. Beauty is also recognised in the small details. This could be the form of a vase, the textured frame of a mirror or the scent of a candle.


4. Choose quality over quantity

When it comes to lagom style, less is definitely more and finding the right balance will help you achieve the desired look. The philosophy focuses greatly on investing in quality over quantity. Instead of buying disposable furniture and design objects, opt for pieces that will last the long haul. Look for well-made pieces of a classic style that can hold up against the pressures of everyday life. Splurge on the items you love, and on items that celebrate the artisan craftsman. Look for the natural beauty in quality materials and in the intricate design details.


How to adopt the lagom lifestyle

The lagom philosophy extends further than interiors. It’s a way of life. Beyond styling your home with restraint and focusing on quality materials, there is a way you can incorporate more balance into your daily life.

Man and woman relaxing at a lake, enjoying wine

• Live with less stuff

Clear out the items of your life that don’t bring you any joy. From your wardrobe to your desk, get rid of the clutter and live with less. But, it’s not just items you can declutter. Think about the relationships you have with people. Perhaps you can part ways with those who no longer add value and happiness to your life.


• Waste less

Learn to waste less whether that’s the food in your fridge, paper, clothing or general house hold rubbish. Focus on reusing, upcycling, and donating.


• Buy less

Ask yourself, do you really need that? Buying less will help you live with less and reduce your waste. Spend your money on special things that last and on experiences that enrich your life. It’s simply about being mindful.


• Slow down

Take your foot off the pedal and slow down. Practice patience. Experience boredom. Enjoy your own company.


• Find balance

Focus on finding balance in your life. This could be fostering a work/life balance or worryingly less about doing better and instead, focusing on doing your best.



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