Until now, it is hard to believe that Japanese and Scandinavian interiors have not made connections through design before. Aesthetically and culturally they share a great deal of common ground; clean lines, pared back minimalism, celebrating handcrafted, carefully chosen pieces that stand the test of time. The emphasis here is an appreciation of the detail and craftsmanship in what furnishes the room. Whereas the popular Scandi trend leans towards the cooler colour palette with pale wood, the Japanese elements of dark wood, black metal and warm, earthy tones marry the two.
This is a softer version of minimalism, drawing on Wabi Sabi – to embrace the beauty in the imperfect, furnishing the home with well made pieces that carry personal meaning. Introduce natural textures and raw edges, drawing from the rustic elements of Japanese style. Think bamboo and woven textiles, linens, hand thrown ceramics, charred wood and large scale indoor plants. Mix light and dark timbers such as oak, ash and walnut as a contrast between flooring and furniture. Focus on collections of curated treasures and large statement art on the walls. Multifunctional furniture such as the day bed and futon inspired sofas have also already begun to find their way into Nordic interiors. Colours are warmer, moving towards the soft greens, plaster pinks with accents of unexpected colour such as the deep coral seen in the hand knotted Japan rug. The soft scattering of blossom like wool imitates nature, making itself at home as a feature piece in an otherwise minimal space. Produced in collaboration with artisan weavers in India, as with all GAN rugs, it demonstrates the importance of supporting craftsmanship through ethical practice, respecting tradition through contemporary design.
The overall aesthetic is calming and comforting. Far more than a fleeting trend, this fusion between two worlds of design holds the appeal of sustainable living, a sanctuary away from the uncertain times we find ourselves in. How do you feel about Japandi? Is it a step too far as an achievable look, or do you feel a connection with the minimalist lifestyle?