What Is The Lagom Interior Design Trend?

If you were one of the people who embraced last year's hygge trend, you might have noticed that the conversation has slowly shifted away from the concepts of comfort and coziness inherent in hygge to a new Scandinavian word: lagom. Lagom translates loosely to "just the right amount," from a common Swedish proverb, "Lagom är bäst," or "Enough is as good as a feast" (as reported by The Guardian). It emphasizes what may be referred to as the Goldilocks philosophy: not too much, not too little.

The central concept of lagom is a focus on balance, and living life in harmony with the world with just enough possessions, according to TechnoGym. Therefore, interior designs based on the idea of lagom emphasize minimalism, functionality, the concept that less is more, and the use of sustainable, renewable materials. To create a lagom home, you need to pare down your belongings and décor to what is absolutely necessary, eliminating anything that could be considered superfluous.

Sustainability and lagom

Sustainability is a central tenet of a lagom lifestyle, so any interior decoration in the lagom style needs to incorporate sustainable practices and eco-friendly materials, as explained by John Evans. But lagom goes beyond the choice of furniture materials; it also emphasizes durability and quality, encouraging people to choose pieces that will last a long time, as opposed to those that constantly need to be replaced. To truly exemplify the lagom trend, you will also, ironically, need to let go of the idea of following trends: Lagom is all about standing the test of time, not changing up your décor every time you see a new concept that you like on Instagram.

So, what does a sustainably designed home interior look like? Wood is a prominent material in the lagom style, as it is more sustainably produced than other materials such as plastic, and it is well known for its durable nature. Lagom design could incorporate wood floors or wood furniture. You could also pay homage to the idea of lagom through your choice of fabrics, gravitating towards materials of higher quality such as linen, cotton, or wool. If you want to fully embrace the lagom lifestyle, you may take it a step further and create your fabrics by knitting or sewing, simultaneously promoting functionality and sustainability.

How to practice lagom

Lagom is about more than how your home looks or whether you choose a wooden material over a plastic one. Instead, lagom is a lifestyle choice that focuses on balance, functionality, and sustainability, and if you keep that larger concept in mind, you will be able to design your living space in a way that truly expresses those values.

As an example, TechnoGym points out that exercise and sleep are crucial to a life that emphasizes balance, so you can carve out little areas in your home that highlight the importance of those aspects of your life. Whether that is designing a workout zone based on functionality or approaching your bedroom with the idea that it needs to be a peaceful, restful corner of your house, a home interior based on lagom is sometimes much more about your overall mindset than it is about any specific color and furniture choices.

What a lagom-inspired space looks like

The essence of lagom is functionality and practicality, so a home or a room decorated in the lagom style would emphasize simplicity and minimalism, with nothing more than what is strictly necessary. TechnoGym reports that this aesthetic typically involves furniture with clean, simple lines that prioritize practicality and convenience over any sort of beauty or visual appeal (although simplicity in furniture design can be quite stunning in its own way). Designing a space for practical use would also involve strategic choices about the location of various furniture pieces, such as putting a sofa or a desk near a window so you can save on electricity by taking advantage of natural light for your reading corner or working space.

Because lagom is a Swedish concept, lagom design also incorporates traditional elements of Nordic interior design principles, John Evans notes. These include neutral, soothing colors, particularly in varying shades of gray, and an emphasis on the use of wood as a material whenever possible.

Lagom design tips

Designing a space with a lagom aesthetic in mind will involve more decluttering and eliminating unnecessary items than selecting new pieces. In fact, purchasing new items with the idea of making your space more in line with lagom ideals would actually be the opposite of the lagom philosophy, which is much more in line with the Marie Kondo method. Taking that into consideration, the best tips for designing your house to align with a lagom vibe are mostly about efficient use of space, as recommended by Secret Linen Store.

One lagom method is to follow the one in, one out rule, meaning that for everything you buy for your home, you have to get rid of one thing you already own (preferably by donating it, in the lagom spirit of sustainability). Another helpful tip is to focus on containers that naturally reduce clutter, such as a filing system for papers or some sort of organizer for your toiletries. If you buy something that doesn't fit in the container intended for storage, maybe it doesn't need to be in your home. One of the biggest enemies of a lagom aesthetic is the ever-present pile of papers and mail that tend to sit on entryway tables. To that end, implement a one-touch method for paper, meaning the first time you touch it, you get rid of it by either recycling it or dealing with whatever it requires.

Lagom means being happy with what you have

All in all, the best way for your home to exemplify the lagom lifestyle is for you to make the most out of the space and the furniture you already have, as opposed to running out and buying a bunch of new, unnecessary items to fit a particular trend. Line C Design has a rundown of recommendations on maximizing your home's space in the spirit of the lagom aesthetic.

If your house is on the smaller side, you can help it appear more spacious and airy (in keeping with lagom's minimalist vibe) by focusing on mirrors and other glass surfaces as a décor method. You can also make the most of a small room by strategically placing a statement piece of furniture as the focal point, naturally drawing the eye upwards. And, of course, in keeping with lagom's emphasis on sustainability, you should always try to make sure anything you add to your home has been previously owned and loved.