Scandinavian-inspired sliding door wardrobes

When one thinks of Scandinavian design the immediate images conjured up, whether they be of architecture, interior design and furnishings or even cars, are often ones of naturally inspired simplicity, minimalism and ingenious functionality. If you are aiming to create a Scandinavian feel to your bedroom or other space where you are installing sliding wardrobe doors, this article will provide you with guidance, tips and tricks on how to achieve that ‘Scandi-look’.

It also provides a brief background of the emergence of the Scandinavian design style, together with some visual examples of notable pieces Scandinavian design.

5 essential elements to achieve the ‘Scandi-style’

The way in which designs, materials and colours are combined form an essential component of achieving the ‘Scandi-look’.

1. Light
Natural daylight is a rare commodity for Scandinavians during the long winter months and the light in the far north is also quite different – so Scandinavian homes are designed to let in as much natural daylight as possible and to trap it there. Therefore, use paint colours, flooring materials and soft furnishings that will reflect light (rather than absorb it), and even bounce it around the room eg. mirrors or soft metallic elements.

2. Colours
Bearing in mind the requirement to maximise light, the Scandi-inspired colour palette generally consists of white (in varying hues and shades), teamed with accent hues of gently greyed-down colours. These can be soft duck egg blues, gentle ocean greys and wistful forest greens. Light-coloured natural timbers can also be introduced. However, if this approach threatens to create an overall 'too neutral' look for you, small ‘splashes’ of bright, even acidic colours (eg. vibrant orange, turquoise, lime green, magenta or even monochromatic designs in brown and black) can liven up the scheme.

3. Natural finishes
Scandi style is also about layers. Any overall neutral scheme will need definition and this can be introduced using various textures. Despite the climate, wall-to- wall carpets are rarely to be found in Scandinavian homes – instead, either natural stone products or timber in various designs and textures is preferred for flooring, together with a propensity for the use of lots of rugs! Natural fibres such as hemp, sisal and wool in soft, neutral colours are also and important element of this look. And of course, natural timbers, which most Scandinavian countries have an obvious abundance of, play another integral part of the style. These are generally light in colour and variously grained or are treated in light washes of the above-mentioned colours.

4. Simplicity
Scandi-style is all about understatement. It is free of clutter or unnecessary ornament. Clean lines and soft, unobtrusive forms are the order of the day. However, excellent craftsmanship and a focus on the beautiful execution of functional, even ordinary elements of a design, are held in high regard. So, for example, the junction of a table’s legs with its top may have ingeniously designed joints, or the functional elements of a lamp (the switch or the bulb holder) may encompass far from run-of-the-mill solutions, as seen in most other similar products.

5. Statement pieces
Almost as a counterpoint to the above four elements, Scandinavians value the importance of displaying a statement piece of furniture or item of soft furnishing or fixture. Rather than having lots of chairs, tables, lamps and sofas crammed into a room, careful consideration is given to a couple of beautiful (and often relatively expensive) items. Take the unmistakable Egg Chair originally designed by Arne Jacobsen in 1958, or one of Paul Henningsen PH Artichoke Pendant Lights (also first designed in 1958) whose structure revolutionised the field of contemporary lighting, at once illuminating the fixture while providing gushes of gently-diffused light.

How to complement the 'Scandi look’ using our sliding wardrobe doors

In terms of made-to-measure sliding doors we offer a number of framing options, door designs and panel materials that can be combined successfully in your interior scheme to create the Scandinavian look. These include the following:

Steel framing

- Silver, White, Stone Grey

Aluminium framing

- Anodised Silver, Gloss White, Stone Grey, Polished Silver

Shaker-style framing

- White, Stone Grey, Cashmere, Champagne Avola, Truffle Brown Avola

Door designs

- Minimalist
- Shaker-style
- Milano, Modena, Verona, Lovara style doors.

Door panel materials

- Mirrored eg: Silver, Grey
- Colours glass panels eg: Pure White, Soft White, Cashmere
- Plain wood panels eg: White, Light Grey, Pebble Grey, Cashmere
- Woodgrain panels eg: Whitewood, Kaiserburg Oak, Natural Anthor Oak, Shorewood, Grey Nebraska, Natural Carini Walnut, Truffle Brown Branson

Bedside cabinets

Available in a range of plain or wood-effect finishes our bedside cabinets and drawers are available to order separately, to enable personalised combinations to be created.

Scandinavian design – a brief history

What we usually think of as ‘the Scandinavian style’, or the 'Nordic look’, or more recently what has been termed ‘Hygge style' (a Danish and Norwegian word for a mood of coziness and comfortable conviviality with feelings of wellness and contentment) emerged in the early 20th century and subsequently gathered momentum in the 1950s and 1960s throughout the five Nordic countries of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden. Anyone familiar with some of the notable designers of this period eg. Arne Jacobsen and Verner Panton (Denmark), Alvar Aalto and Eero Saarinen (Finland), Bruno Matthson (Sweden) or Ingmar Relling (Norway) will know the clean simplicity, ingenuity, and honesty of materials that was a hallmark of the work, whether it be in architecture, furniture or household goods.

The Scandinavian concept often also typically embodies the following aspects:

  • Use of simple, bright colours and geometric shapes;
  • Minimal use of un-necessary decoration;
  • A particular focus on the careful design of functional joints or fixings;
  • The use of naturally-derived materials (particularly timber); and
  • An environmentally sound approach to design and production methods.

In more recent years the availability of Scandinavian-designed household products including furniture, textiles, ceramics, lamps, tableware etc. through the ubiquitous Swedish retailer IKEA (since its first appearance in Britain in the late 1980s) has gone a long way to firmly embedding the Scandinavian ethos into UK culture.

Contact us

If you would like to talk through any aspect Scandinavian-inspired sliding wardrobe doors or for a quote please call the Design Team on freephone 0800 035 1730.

A Scandinavian-inspired theme can be created in numerous ways using our door panels, for example – top: Lecce Premium White and Halifax Oak panels; above left: Como Grey Mirror with Silver framing; and above right: Como Mirror and Natural Anthor Oak panels.
Our range of co-ordinating bedside cabinets and hairpin leg tables can also be used to complement a Scandinavian theme.
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Wardrobe Doors Direct
6 Gawthorpe Avenue, Bingley, Bradford, West Yorkshire BD16 4DG (Please note this is not a showroom)
Tel: 01274 563 323, Email:

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