When Retro-Chic Meets Scandinavian Maximalism

, , , , , , , , , , By Catherine

This is the home of Swedish interior design Joanna Lavén, whose signature style is luxurious, modern with a retro-chic flair – Like no other!

It also falls more into the maximalist category, with vibrant colors and fun shapes, but it also with a certain restraint, careful curation, and serene atmosphere that is so characteristic of the Scandinavian style. Her interiors are always filled with stunning vintage pieces, and yet she makes the end result look incredibly contemporary.

This home located in Lidingö, Sweden, and it is a spacious renovated 70’s villa. Many original features were preserved, and most furniture are auction finds, travel souvenirs, and the owners’ design. The kitchen was designed by Joanna and made in teak wood.

Enjoy the tour!

Fun fact: The sunken sofa area used to be an indoor pool! Talk about a creative solution.

If you like this style, make sure to check out this classic and luxurious Stockholm apartment, also designed by Joanna.

If you’re curious, click here to see what Joanna’s previous home looked like.

Styling: Joanna Lavén & David Wahlgren
Photos: James Stokes



  1. Sveta
    18 Oct 2020 / 04:59

    maximalism or minimalism?))

    • Catherine
      19 Oct 2020 / 16:27

      I can see why you’re asking ;) It is curated like a minimalist apartment, but the style is more maximalist with the shapes, sizes, colors, etc. So maximalist with a Scandinavian twist (restraint) in my eyes :)

  2. Willi
    5 Nov 2020 / 17:55

    To me, this also looks minimalist because it’s not cluttered and there aren’t actually that many furniture pieces in each room. It’s opulent in style, but I thought maximalism was the opposite of minimalism, hence not about as little as possible but as much as the owner wants? In other words, I understand minimalism as not being a style but a way of living with less.

    In any case—I really like it! Some of the shapes (especially in the bedroom) also remind me of art deco but that’s probably just me. What I like best are the walnut window nooks with the vertical slabs! It does look super-expensive, though.

    • Catherine
      4 Dec 2020 / 16:16

      Oh, definitely! That’s why I like to call it “Scandi maximalism” because there is that restraint to it (not truly Scandi if it’s not functional first and foremost). It is also bolder in shape and colors, while still cohesive and somewhat understated.
      But indeed, if taken purely as the opposite of minimalism, maybe here the word “maximalism” isn’t accurate because Joanna clearly carefully curated her pieces.

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