Japandi – a harmonious fusion of Japanese elegance and Scandinavian design

Timeless. Minimalistic. Warm. Rustic. There are many expressions of this popular interior design trend, and they are all important cornerstones for those who choose to embrace a more harmonious philosophy for the home. Japandi is an exciting hybrid trend that has successfully fused two great styles to create a world of both perfection and sustainability.

Perhaps we have our historical and cultural heritage to thank for japandi. The relationship between Denmark and Japan goes back as far as 150 years. At that time, Danish architects and designers began to look further afield for new inspiration – and Japan became their biggest and most important source of future influences. The relationship proved to be mutual – the Japanese were quick to embrace Danish design. Perhaps thanks to the fact that both nations have a strong love and respect for craftsmanship and natural materials. This is where both the Japanese philosophy of "wabi-sabi" and the Danish "hygge" come into play. The common denominator is an appreciation of simplicity, which is strongly reflected in the new japandi style.

Zen Flow Light - DesignSalong

Natural colors and shapes

Japandi is very relevant today and is seen by many as a counter-reaction to the long-dominant construct of consumerism. It's also a trend that completely distances itself from the anti-minimalist #cluttercore hysteria that lives a parallel life and is immensely popular. Japandi stands for a stripped-down environment with a focus on functionality and simplicity. The Scandinavian style is characterized by a light and subtle color scheme with neutral tones and natural untreated wood. However, Japandi often means more rustic tones and materials. Imagine dark woods, black silhouettes and slightly muted colors combined with somewhat more powerful Scandinavian details. Perhaps you could say that the classic Scandinavian style has been beefed up a bit to make a stronger impression.

Careful choices

The climate crisis, visions of sustainability and Covid isolation have led many of us around the world to look at life differently. We are testing out new directions in life and making new, careful choices in both big and small ways. The philosophy is a simpler life – with more closeness and calm and less consumption. To some extent, it's about cleaning and creating clean spaces, but above all, the focus is on finding a place for reflection. A breathing space, where all the outside world's influences are shut out. You can read about tips such as placing an armchair in a corner that can be turned away from the rest of the room, or a bedroom free of all furniture except possibly a bedside table. For many, that might be taking it a step too far – luckily, there are wallpapers, paintings and posters that can soften the room and give it a personal touch, without breaking any style rules!

Ginkgo Biloba Beige - Photowall

5 Japandi-inspired points of departure:

  • Clean up! Away with information overload and visual noise. Take the opportunity to focus on body and soul with yoga and tea. Meditation, anyone?
  • Find a sense of peace! We are looking for tranquillity and a place to unwind; the decor should be uncluttered and harmonious, complemented by natural elements. Go for tactile surfaces, preferably sandblasted or with a patina.
  • Create contrasts! Clean lines and austere furnishings combined with imperfection and natural materials. Ceramics, rattan and wool are the perfect match. 
  • Think long-term! We need to make wiser choices and live with them longer. Invest in timeless designs and things you want around you for the rest of your life. 
  • Less is more! In life, in the body, in the home. A minimalist trend that can be applied to many things... 
Soft Frayed Wall - Photowall

"Japandi is a minimalist trend based on sustainable and conscious choices expressed through well-balanced design."

-Anneli Öquist, trend expert at Photowall

Natural colors and bright palettes are the base, which can then be complemented with details in slightly stronger accents. But there are also those who opt for bright colors on a larger scale, instead toning down the overall look with more harmonious furniture and accessories.

At Photowall, we love trends that leave room for personality and interpretation. Choose to wallpaper an entire room, or style it with a classy poster. Combine colors and shapes, find dynamic details and stronger accents. Choose something you love – and will continue to love in the future. Take inspiration from our Japandi collection with motifs that exude calm and harmony, with earthy tones and simple lines. Which will be your new favorite?

Natural Bamboo Wood - GI Collection

Link to the collection.