Designer Takeover : Do as the Danish Do...

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Designer Takeover : Do as the Danish Do


In our monthly Designer Takeover slot we give the Journal soapbox over to one of our designers. This month Leonnie Whitehead warms us up with cosy talk of Scandi interior influences.

Leonnie says…

“We have heard a lot about the Danish design buzz words such as ‘Hygge’ & ‘Lagom’ popping up recently in amongst other revolving door trends that come and go, but actually there is a lot to be said for the Nordic ways of life and their influence on interior design.

I began my design career working for a Danish company which is where I developed a love for Scandinavian design and learnt to appreciate the simplistic beauty of clean lines, muted colour palettes and earthy materials. Besides that, I realised the value of the smaller details that the Danish use to overcome the winter blues and embrace their own home interiors.

Looking back over the projects I have worked on over the last few years with Suna Interior Design, you wouldn’t necessarily notice that I am a secret-scandi lover. My projects have been so varied in style from vibrant and eclectic to ‘luxy’ and glam.  This goes to prove that as a designer at Suna, you design to suit the clients’ individual brief rather than following your own personal taste. I often get the comment from clients ‘I bet your house is amazing!’ but in actual fact my own home is VERY different to most of the show homes I produce. Mainly because I didn’t just get handed a wad of cash to make my house look pretty but also because I like the fresh, calm, cosiness of the simple soft greys & crisp whites in comparison to the chaos of everyday life! So, let me share with you a few ways to embrace the Scandinavian charm at home. “Do as the Danish do”, so they say….”


“A lot of Danish furniture is very minimalist in shape and form, however a sense of warmth can be added by using rich earthy wood tones and a mixture of sheepskins, soft wools and natural, textured knits. Combine this with some greenery and the space will quite literally come to life and feel organic and homely.”


“One of my pet hates is bright, glary, over-head lighting. My fiancé is constantly complaining about the amount of lamps we have on around the house. As well as all the unnecessary cushions… but that is just something every Interior Designers spouse has to accept! Lighting is the one of the most important considerations during the winter months when it’s dark for pretty much 99% of the hours we spend at home. There is a lot to be said for smaller atmospheric table lamps and clusters of candles to make you feel warm and fuzzy indoors. More little pools of light will give a greater sense of cosiness that one bright light…”


“The Scandinavians are very good at coming up with functional and smart storage solutions which comes from the desire to live a happy clutter-free life. When all your belongings have a home, it becomes an easy habit to keep them hidden away. Also, multifunctional storage is key when you live in the city and you want to make the most of your space.”

Own an icon

“The Danish are very proud of their design reputation and many are willing to spend the money to own an iconic piece of furniture, in particular a feature arm chair that can take pride of place in the heart of the home. We all know how good it feels when you’ve saved up to buy something special that you really love.  Imagine that feeling in the form of a beautiful, cosy lounge chair where you can spend hours reading and drinking mugs of tea! Ok, so maybe we can’t all go out and buy a £5k arm chair, but the point is, if you have an item in your home that you value and are really proud of, I promise it will bring you joy every time you use it!”

Show home, CGI and specification designs showcased here include images from the following developments :

Hyde New Homes, Wing, Camberwell
Hyde New Homes, Packington Square, Islington
London Square, Caledonian Road, Islington
London Square, Staines-upon-Thames
London Square, Bermondsey
Fruition Properties, Cornwall Works
Fruition Properties, Madison Penthouse, Fulham
Countryside Properties, Herschel Place, Hawkhurst
Optivo, Embassy Gardens
Owen Property, Verano, Hove
Mount Anvil, Dollar Bay, Canary Wharf
Mount Anvil, Three Waters, Bromley-by-Bow
Bellway Homes, Maple Grove, Hackbridge
Clarion, Blackfriars Place
Be, Aberfeldy Village
Southern Space, Dalmeny Avenue

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