We've had a bad case of wanderlust lately. Work is stressful, wedding planning is overwhelming and the Minnesota winter is closing in quickly. Kinda makes you want to, I dunno, move to Norway and spend your days drinking tea and blogging. Reed has always claimed a minimalist design aesthetic, and with my major organization skills and adoration of simplicity, Scandinavian design is...everything.

I spent the weekend scouring Scandinavian interior design blogs and, once distilled down to a few must-haves, headed out to Ikea (of course) to pick up a few essentials for a low-budget makeover.

 First things first, I am writing this for all you renters, who don't have the freedom to paint every single surface in your home snowy white, floorboards and all.  That being said, we had already painted our living room the whitest white we could find, and our bedroom a delicate light grey. If you are really committed to augmenting your apartment living, always check with your landlord, and for the love, spend the extra half hour taping so you don't make a huge mess. Having very light walls (preferably white) will make a huge difference in accomplishing a Scandi feel. Can I say Scandi? Is that a thing?

Step 1. Organize You cannot have simplicity without organization. The quickest way to ruin your clean lines is with socks popping out of drawers, or unorganized stacks of odds and ends on top of your dresser. Full disclosure: I keep a mound of makeup on a vintage cake stand on my otherwise serene vanity. Be realistic. If you can't keep up with it, you'll never do it and it will bug you every day.

Step 2. Black and white. White and black. Maybe a touch of gray. Scandinavian design is overwhelmingly B&W, more specifically: white with black. But make it your own, and add pops of all color that you want.

Step 3. Buy bleach. White stuff gets dirty. Realllll dirty. We bought a whole new container of bleach with our brand new white sheets and duvet.

Step 4. Pick a room. Don't overwhelm yourself by attempting to make every room in your apartment perfect in one day. We picked our bedroom- the place that was already the most adaptable - and what better place to zen out?

A few basics that all Scandinavian bloggers seem to have:

Fine Little Day Black Gran Pillow

Sheepskin Throw

Eames style white rocking chair

Pia Wallen Cross Throw Blanket

Marimekko Mug for cozy bevvies

Ikea Stockholm Rug

Two last tips:

1. The 2014 Norske Color of the Year, according to the Norwegian version of Pantone, Nordsjo (as far as I can tell): Teal

2. http://norskeinteriorblogger.no/ 

I can't read a single word of it, but I have found so much inspiration, and loaded my Feedly with 20-some Scandinavian bloggers. They also publish a monthly magazine called NIB Hjemme. It's gorgeous, and worth every page.

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