Scandinavian organization techniques – 4 ideas to borrow from Nordic tradition


The Swedish term 'Lagom' translates to 'just the right amount' or 'balance', an approach to home organization and decor that promotes moderation and harmony by avoiding excess and focusing on what's essential.

'Scandi style is one of the unique organizational styles emphasizing simple and neatly organized living spaces. This style generally leads to the creation of open spaces that let a lot of light in, making them feel expansive,' explains Dominique Bonet, lead designer at Lineaire design. 'This doesn't necessarily mean embracing extreme minimalism; rather, you should have enough of what you love to spark joy. At its core, Lagom means 'not too much, not too little.' To incorporate this organization technique into your home, assess your belongings and keep only what adds value and brings joy, decluttering the rest. Lagom also encourages conscientious consumerism, motivating homeowners to only bring things they need or love into the home. Invest in timeless furnishings that stand the test of time and transcend interior design trends.


In Sweden, 'dostadning' or death cleaning, rather misleadingly, focuses on decluttering and organizing to minimize possessions. Traditionally, this method is intended to encourage the tidying of one's belongings so others don't have to do it after death. However, it has evolved into a decluttering technique for anyone to adopt to make it easier to maintain a more organized home.


In Swedish, 'ordning och reda' translates to order and organization – this is a concept emphasizing the importance of maintaining structure in various aspects of life, including the home.

Although traditionally a lifestyle practice, this can be incorporated into your home organization in a few ways, including decluttering regularly, having a place for everything and keeping everything in its place, and finding systematic storage solutions. 'In line with Scandi design principles, every item in a home should have a designated place. This approach not only enhances the visual appeal of a space but also promotes a sense of order and calm,' says Georgina Ross, interior designer. 'Innovative storage solutions are key to achieving this, with a focus on functionality and style.' 'Clients who map out storage solutions before furnishing a room find it much easier to avoid overcrowding,' adds Keely Smith, lead interior designer at JD Elite Interiors. 'Everything has its place, making cleaning and organization more simple.'


Hygge is a Danish term representing coziness and well-being. 'When you strip things back to the basics, it allows your surroundings and possessions to serve an actual purpose rather than just filling space,' explains Judi Kutner, a senior contributor at Virtual Staging. 'The Danes call this hygge, which is all about coziness, comfort, and enjoyment from simple pleasures. It's about quality over quantity.'

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