Byflou Journal


The combination of Scandinavian minimalism and Japanese elegance in interior design has recently been referred to by the clever term, Japandi. A style with clean lines, subtle colours and a focus on good craftsmanship and functionality. Dive into the philosophy behind and get tips on decorating in Japandi style right here.

Japandi is the harmonious hybrid that draws on the Scandinavian tradition of minimalism and craftsmanship, and the Japanese tradition of elegance and architecture. The unifying element is an appreciation of simplicity, sleekness and quality.

The history and philosophy of Japandi

Japandi is a relatively new concept but the philosophy behind and the relationship between Japan and Scandinavia, especially Denmark, dates far back in time. The foundations for trade and cultural exchange between Denmark and Japan were laid more than 150 years ago.

Many Danish architects and designers were looking for new inspiration, and Japan became the biggest and most important source. The interest was mutual and the Japanese were quick to embrace Danish design. A shared love and respect for craftsmanship and natural materials can be seen as the bond between the two nations.

The 5 basic elements of Japandi

  • 1. Less is more
    Prioritise a few good things and remove unnecessary and distracting elements.
    Furnish the room with good quality furniture that will last a lifetime or even several generations.
    The patina and marks of use only enhance the beauty of the product.

  • 2. Natural colour palette
    Let light, subtle and natural colours be the building blocks of your interior, but give them a touch of depth
    as green, ochre and brown through the use of wood, posters, ceramics and decorative objects.

  • 3. Organic shapes
    Go for organic shapes that soften the sense of space and give a sense of meditative calm.
    The organic shapes go beautifully with the natural colours, creating a natural harmony.

  • 4. Natural materials
    Use natural materials such as grass, flax, reeds and rice paper.
    Natural materials create simplicity, authenticity and the feeling of Slow living.

  • 5. Down to earth decor
    Think "down to earth". Hang lamps low, decorate with low furniture and place plants on the floor.
    This emphasises the sense of earthiness and adds calm to the space.

Decorate in Japandi style

If you want to decorate in Japandi style, it is important to aim for the simple and functional. Choose a few quality products for your interior and avoid distracting elements.

Fabrics are neutral and calm when it comes to Japandi, and cotton is the main focus. Let it be organic, of high-quality materials and possibly with special techniques.

Choose lighting that adds a warm and harmonious glow. Go for paper qualities, wood or light textiles when choosing lamps - all of these help to provide a warm glow that adds a soft and diffused light to the room. Lighting is often seen individually or in clusters which create a beautiful look.

Keep the table setting simple, but feel free to mix contrasting colour combinations. Japan is particularly known for its beautiful ceramics that play with different surfaces, shapes and lines. Combine and invite for a sensual dinner.