Curious about the popular and achingly stylish trend that's been popping up all over your Instagram feed? We have a feeling that this timeless trend is here to stay.
What is Japandi Style?
Japandi style combines the best of both Japanese and Scandinavian design elements, hence the name ”Japandi”. The Japanese philosophy of wabi-sabi, a way of life that embraces beauty in imperfection, and the Scandinavian tradition of hygge, which emphasizes comfort and coziness, merge to create Japandi, an effortless style that balances clean lines, comfortable living, and functional design. Could there be a more perfect pairing?
While there is an emphasis on simplicity, and a minimal aesthetic, it is also calming and welcoming. It is a strategic, deliberate design style that needs to be intentionally curated.
We’ve gathered some of the best ways to incorporate Japandi style into your home.
Muted, neutral tones are the building blocks for Japandi design. Calm, serene shades of cream, oatmeal, and greige help to reflect natural light and make spaces feel airier, inspired by Scandinavian design. Pair these with Japanese earth tones, inspired by nature. Avoid harsh or bold colors. Natural colors should also be used for furniture and accessories; a curved sofa in ivory, a tan linen throw or taupe cotton throw pillows all help create layers of comfort in a Japandi home. Accents of gray or black, or selective use of Scandi colors like soft blues or greens, also help to create depth in Japandi design.
Artwork is an important element of Japandi design because it helps to enhance the tone of the room. We love it as it’s also one of the easiest and affordable ways to transform a room. Like every other element of Japandi design, the artwork that is chosen must be chosen with careful consideration of how it ties into the rest of the room, and what it evokes. Try adding minimalist wall art in contrasting monochromes or abstract paintings in muted palettes to create an impact without dominating the room.
Make sure to integrate natural fibres and materials like rattan, cane, and bamboo into your room. Either as accessories, or as furniture, these elements help to bring the outside in, while providing warmth and texture. Solid wood furniture, primarily in light wood tones, is an important component of Japandi style. While Scandi design traditionally relies on simple, clean lines, Japanese pieces often introduce sculptural elements. Incorporate the two to create the perfect balance, while being mindful to only pick pieces that provide form and function.
While not all clutter-free spaces are done in Japandi design, all Japandi rooms are clutter-free spaces. In keeping with its minimalist roots, there is no desire to have excessive stuff cluttering up spaces in Japandi design. Instead, expansive countertops, cleaned-off coffee tables, and furniture topped with selective accessories are the result of deliberate design decisions. If even with careful curation you still find yourself with extra bits and pieces, use baskets made out of natural elements like rattan, or source carefully chosen furniture with hidden storage.
Harsh overhead lights have no place in a Japandi room. In Japandi rooms, soft lighting with warm-toned bulbs will enhance the overall cozy feeling. Task lighting highlights the functional aspect of the design, while strategically placed lamps create cocoons of light and comfort, perfect for winding down at the end of a long day. Sleek pendants and lamps with shades made of natural elements like rattan are both excellent choices and offer contrasting styles while both being true to Japandi design.
In keeping with the clean lines in the rest of Japandi design, low-profile furniture further enhances the impression of a sleek, but comfortable, room. Avoid overstuffed, oversized furniture in favor of sofas with streamlined backs, chairs with straight arms, and coffee tables at a height that complement the other pieces. Low-profile furniture also works with the notion of reducing clutter, and only using pieces that offer form and function.
Always invoke Wabi-Sabi and Hygge
Wabi-sabi is both a mindset, and an aesthetic philosophy. By accepting imperfection, and finding beauty in flaws, wabi-sabi helps us connect to natural materials, and creates a preference for the handmade, instead of the mass-produced. This ties in beautifully to the hygge lifestyle that embraces coziness and comfort, as it can be difficult to invoke when surrounded by generic items. Both wabi-sabi and hygge remind us to create spaces that drive connection and meaning, in their aesthetics and function.
A Japandi-style home can be created through careful curation and intentional design. Creating a balance of comfort and efficiency results in rooms and homes that are enjoyed by families living there, while also allowing the home to work for them. Scandinavian and Japanese styles have long been popular design inspirations. The pairing of the two has created a beautiful design style that can now be enjoyed the world over.
Which elements will you incorporate into your home?