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Scandinavian design: Fabric at the heart of Scandinavian design


Due to harsh weather conditions, homes in Scandinavian countries had to be kept warm by using heavy fabrics on walls, floors and wooden furniture.

Fabric at the heart of Scandinavian design

Fabric is an essential part of decoration in Nordic countries, ever since the creation of Scandinavian design.

Homes in Scandinavian countries, owing to the harsh weather conditions outside, had to be kept warm by heavy fabrics on their walls, floors and wooden furniture.

Their particularly folkloric culture accustomed them to embroidery and weaving of national costumes.

Fabric assembly and the skills involved undeniably played a major role in the development of Scandinavian design, from the outset.

The aesthetic spirit of the Scandinavian peoples led them to create elegant fabrics, decorated at te beginning by patterns inspired by nature, owing to their close bond with their environment.

Staying true to their land, Nordic peoples used natural colours such as copper, ochre and grey.

This lyrical patterned fabric, goes perfectly with interiors that have the minimalist curves so typical of Scandinavian design.

In the 1950s, Pop Art burst onto the scene, and the fabric was now produced in industrial fashion.

Scandinavian design evolved, and its fabric did with it, becoming full of vivid colours , it responded to the need in Nordic homes for dynamism.

Printed fabrics continued to be floral but were drawn in stylised fashion, and abstract serigraphic patterns were also included, in vivid tones, and these designs were repeated in wall furnishings and tableware.

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Glass and ceramic in Scandinavian design

As is the case for fabrics, ceramics and glassware were also designed at the outset by family-run craft workshops, with natural materials, drawn from the heart of the environment.

They were used on a daily basis, at table, in the kitchen, close to water sources and thus forged the visual identity of Scandinavian design.

In the 20th Century, glass and ceramic work allied traditional organic patterns and modernist Art Nouveau lines.

Patterns reflecting their natural universe, a strong point of Scandinavian design, was reused here, with colours in osmosis with the overall decoration of their interiors, earth tones and the green of their landscapes.

Very rapidly, master glass blowers, ceramists and potters joined forces with numerous Nordic designers, creating associations that were to have a major influence on the decoration milieu within Scandinavian design.

The sector acquired a more modern touch and renown across Europe as we entered the 20th Century, when the lines changed and became very minimalist, in concordance with the Art Deco movement.

Major brands specialised in distributing kitchenware, vases and other objects produced in Scandinavia across the world.

Scandinavian people's innovative character allowed them to perfectly combine an artistic movement, such as Pop Art in mid-century, while adding freshness and undeniable elegance, by mixing vivid and jazzy colours with refined and extended lines.

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