Differences between minimalism and scandi style

They might seem similar, but the truth is both styles have their defining qualities, even though we might use them mixed in the same home and visually adapt to each other, I want to do this exercise where we learn to see the differences.

Where they originated?

They share similar vibes, but their origins couldn't be farther apart from each other, Scandi style originated in the Scandinavian countries like Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Denmark by the end of the twentieth century. Minimalism was a trend born in the '60s in the United States as a response to the saturation of previous trends like pop art, and its purpose was to seek to live with the essentials.

What are their similarities?

From a starting point, they both use white as a primary color in walls and ceilings. In minimalism, the use of white represents a bright space and translates into a clear state of mind. In contrast, in Scandi the white is used to bring in more light, mainly because Scandinavian countries lack natural lighting during autumn, winter, and spring.

Another similar point between both styles is the use of fewer items, focusing on usefulness over decoration. In minimalism, this focus goes searching for clean spaces with straight lines while the scandi style wants to make the space as functional as possible.

What are the differences?

One big difference that tends to be confused is the use of color. At the same time, scandi does favor many natural kinds of wood plus fabrics like wool, linen, and cotton mainly because it helps create a cozy environment.

Minimalism prefers the use of white and as little color as possible, so in minimalism is very common to find furniture matching the floor and walls and little decor (Note that we are talking about the definition of the style and these are no set rules at all).

Probably one of the reasons both styles tend to be confused.

As it is common to find a minimalist interior design that uses naturally finished wood with white and little decor, we could ideally find in a minimalist interior, even if the reasons are different.

When it comes to decorative objects, Scandi doesn't have a set rule, and minimalism seeks to use little to no decorative pieces. They both aim to transmit a feeling of more significant space, which achieves it with fewer objects that interrupt the visual path.

Scandi vs Japandi vs Nordic

Now you might be wondering what differences between these three are, and this might make you even more confused, but luckily there is an easy answer.

Both Scandi and Nordic mean the same style. The name difference is because of the geographical location; the Scandi style name traces its origins in the Scandinavian countries (Norway, Sweden, and Finland).

And also in Denmark, as it has the same problem with light as the rest of its neighboring countries which are closer to the Northern hemisphere. But Denmark is not part of the Scandinavian countries geographically speaking, so it would be correct to use the term Nordic.

Japandi, on the other hand, is a mixture of Nordic and Japanese style where the use of natural woods is a common feature of both techniques, in this case, we see the use of lower furniture like in traditional Japanese houses mixed with black and deep blue accents.


Here are some other Minimalist Lifestyle posts you might find interesting.

5 Scandi Style Decor Principles

Japandi the New Interior Design Trend

Lifestyle & Design Of Japanese Minimalism

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