Scandinavian Design

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Scandinavia geographically includes Denmark, Norway and Sweden but when talking about Scandinavian design Finland is also included as a part of it. Scandinavian design emerged in 1950s as a designing movement with its main lines being simplicity and minimalistic designs as well as functionality and mass production.

Scandinavian design of furniture and decorating are famous internationally for their modern, innovative and clean lined qualities. Typical to Scandinavian design is functionality and utility of the products. Use of modern technology with materials like teak wood and metal are also typical to Scandinavian design. Scandinavian glassware and pottery design uses naturalistic forms and in fabrics the main theme are clear and simple patterns.

Scandinavian design has also emerged in the 20th century. There are many examples of art for art's sake with no functional purpose but life-enhancing beauty. There are also designers who design products for industrial manufacturing. Large glass works and ceramic factories such as Iittala are globally famous for their functional integrity, restrained aesthetics, good durability and excellent quality. It is the Scandinavian designers' advancement of Organic Design, and that has had the biggest influence on the development of Modernism over the last fifty years.


For most of the Scandinavian people, design is known not only as an essential part of everyday life but also as a means of efficient social change. There has been a historical quest to seek an optimum balance between handmade and natural worlds in their work. Scandinavian climate is nine months of dark winter and cold along with three nice months of bright and glamorous summer, which has also meant that designers have got their inspiration from the delightful natural world as well as from the concept of a warm and cheerful home.

The Scandinavian people have always relied on design insight for their survival and have become professionals at the skillful handling of limited material resources. And specifically the lack of material has made Scandinavian designers think about how to use their materials as efficiently as possible. This dependence on design as a way of to survive has led Scandinavian people to give attention to important element of their culture, social and economic welfare.
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