I’m completely in love with Frederiksbjerg’s neighborhood vibe! Even though it’s in the city center, it’s mostly silent except for church bells and birds. Denmark’s biggest farmers market happens twice a week a couple of streets away, there’s a flea market every other Sunday, and my grocery store has wine tastings on Fridays and Saturdays—and free coffee always :)
This new apartment is very much a work in progress. My approach to decorating has changed quite a bit since I first moved to Denmark. In my first Danish apartment, I was all about crazy colors (remember my pink living room and my purple hallway?).
The Scandinavian aesthetic has rubbed off on me over these past (nearly) eight years and now I’m all about creating hygge in my home because it’s an nice way to live and it’s pretty much the only way to survive the long Danish winters. In this iteration of my life, I’m going with white walls in all but the kitchen and I’m using feminine accent colors of predominantly green and pink with some turquoise, blue, and yellow here and there.
The woodwork throughout my apartment is painted a gloss cream color and I’ve decided not to repaint it. It’s on the ok edge of having been painted too many times, but another coat or two of paint will not do it any favors. The paint is chipped in places, but these imperfections are what made me fall so madly in love with this apartment—unheated stairway bathroom, chipped paint, and all.
My loose decorating plan is to keep it minimalist, combining some original Danish mid century modern furniture with other secondhand finds and a few new things here and there. I don’t think my home will ever not be eclectic.
A Hygge Bedroom Atmosphere
Here’s how the bedroom looked when the previous owners lived here…
Fun, but not not my idea of hygge bedroom decor, and there was OMG so much patching to be done!
Here’s a peek at what I’ve done so far to create a hygge bedroom atmosphere. I don’t have any further concrete decorating plans for this room. I’m just waiting to see what turns up in the secondhand shops and the flea market around the corner. I might get a rug… or I might not. I kind of like not having a lot of things.
Canvas Print: La Dame Aux Camélias
I’ve always wanted an antique metal bed, but they tend to be odd sizes. I considered splurging on a romantic handmade iron bed—but in the end, I chose the simplicity of a low bed crowned by a large (70 cm x 150 cm) piece of art.
I think a low bed with a bold piece of art is a great alternative to a traditional headboard, especially in small rooms. I’m pretty sure a headboard would’ve looked wedged into the space. As it is, my 140 cm mattress just fits.
This canvas print, La Dame Aux Camélias by Alphonse Mucha, was a housewarming gift courtesy of the folks at photowall.com. The original was painted in 1896, but I think it has a psychedelic vibe that reminds me of the lady on the front of my mother’s Herbal Essence shampoo back in the ’70s. It also reminds me of Jim Morrison’s Ghost Song lyrics… I think the stars look like the dreams she’s shaken from her hair.
Shake dreams from your hair hygge bedroom
my pretty child, my sweet one.
Choose the day and choose the sign of your day.m
The day’s divinity. hygge bedroom
First thing you see.
As I looked through the (literally) thousands of wall murals and canvas prints on photowall.com, I wanted so many of them. But once I stumbled upon Mucha and then this particular print, there was no other option. There’s something goddess-like about her, the flowers tie in nicely with my bedding, and the colors go well with my feminine color scheme. It’s the perfect print for this space, and for me right now.
Photowall.com prints all of their artwork to order so you can choose pretty much any size you want, you can even have your own image printed as a canvas or wall mural, or work with them to modify an existing piece of art. I was afraid that this print would would be borderline too big, but I’m glad I didn’t go any smaller.
IKEA Strandkrypa Bedding
I think about 95% of everyone in Denmark buys their bedding at IKEA, and when in Rome…
IKEA’s retro Strandkrypa botanical print bedding was love at first sight and it really does get softer with every wash, as promised. The botanical pattern ties in nicely with my balcony garden and it reminds me of a set of sheets my mother had in the late 70s.
I even bought a spare set for when this one wears out because you just know it’ll be discontinued by then and selling for like $500 on Ebay! If you love it as much as I do and don’t live near an IKEA, it’s available on Amazon (affiliate link).
I need a couple more pillows and I’d like to find another piece of art, or maybe a series of three or so botanical prints for the wall next to the bed. Hopefully I’ll get lucky in the secondhand shops (with art, not pillows). In the meantime, I find this light and uncluttered room to be calming and restful. It’s also a great space for yoga.
A Hygge Bedroom = No Top Sheet
Last week there was a meme going around Facebook about Millennials not using top sheets on their beds. This was a very divisive issue among my friends. I had no idea that people were so passionate about their top sheets.
The usual bedding configuration here in Denmark is a fitted sheet and a duvet. Sheets are sold as a single fitted sheet and I don’t think I’ve ever seen a top sheet for sale here. In fact, IKEA doesn’t offer their “sheet sets” in Denmark, only fitted sheets. I stopped using a top sheet the day I moved to Denmark and I’ve never looked back!
Another interesting fact about Danish bedding is that it’s common for couples to each have their own duvet. A double bed usually has a fitted sheet and twin duvets. I’m still not sure where I stand on this. I was actually going to buy a single bed to save space but my sister thought it would be too sad. She was probably right about that… thanks, Hazel, for keeping hope alive :)
Danish Mid Century Modern Bedroom Furniture
My makeup table is an original Danish mid century modern piece designed by Arne Vodder (more photos here) and the chair is the last surviving piece from a vintage 1950s bedroom set that I bought at auction in the late ’90s.
The chest of drawers (in the second photo, with Opie) is also an original Danish mid century modern piece made of teak. I bought it out of a barn in the Danish countryside for around 700 kr. ($115) two apartments ago. hygge bedro
I also have a whole wall of floor to ceiling wardrobe space, which has been reconfigured to give me dedicated areas for skirts, dresses, coats, and shoes. For a tiny apartment, this place has plenty of storage space. Shockingly, it never feels cluttered.
Lace curtains always make me think of Gypsy by Fleetwood Mac, and of playing “bride” when I was about seven. I think I’ll always have lace curtains (and maybe some paper flowers) somewhere in my home. I especially love when the breeze blows through them in the summer.
My Alvine Spets curtains, also from IKEA, are the same style as I had in the bedroom in my first Danish apartment. I’ve hung two sets because the french doors out to the balcony are wide and one set looked too skimpy. I like that they give me a bit privacy without completely closing off the room from the balcony and courtyard. I have a roller shade for when I want complete privacy.
If you’d like a little Gypsy vibe in your life and don’t live near an IKEA, these curtains are also available on Amazon (affiliate link).
There’s a chandelier, which you can’t see in the photos, but I mostly use the fairy lights and candles to create this hygge bedroom atmosphere.
Once the sun starts making a regular appearance (it’s actually snowing today) I’m going to buy some plants. I’d love to have an apartment full of plants, but Opie likes to eat them so I’m going to have to limit myself to the hanging variety.
I decided to work from home.
A bathtub in the bedroom?
Given my sketchy shower situation, I’m in the logistics stage of considering installing a small clawfoot bathtub where the mirror is. The kitchen is on the other side of the wall so plumbing won’t be an issue.
I’ve found a small tub that can be shipped over from England. I’m going to tape out its dimensions on the floor to see if I can live with the loss of space. With my entire apartment being only 62 square meters, every bit of space counts. But… bubble baths!!!
What do you think of putting a bathtub in the bedroom? Great idea or a white elephant in the making?
Love the minimalist decor – I am still struggling! How do two duvets on one bed look? Doesn’t it look ‘messy’? Having one’s own cover is especially nice in the colder months – I don’t feel a draft when my husband readjusts himself, but we do it with – two top sheets and one duvet!!
Hmmm, a bathtub in the bedroom…I’m sure you will pick a gorgeous one. And, the deep ones that allow you to sit up aren’t even that big, so I am not against it!
Depends on how you adjust them. We like to fold them in half length-wise and put them next to each other with the folded edges facing each other and the pop of colour from the fitted sheet peeping out underneath. I don’t think it looks messy at all. :)
Thanks, Sung. I think it’s a bit too minimalist at the moment, but I didn’t move in with much and I’m being brutally picky about what I choose to bring in so this could take awhile.
The two duvets do look messy. I understand the logistical benefits but I cannot get onboard with how it looks. Even hotels have the two duvets. Two top sheets? Where do you tuck them in? Do you have two mattresses?
It’ll be a small slipper tub (most likely). Fortunately, I’m tiny.
I wouldn’t have thought about having a tub in the bedroom until I saw it done on “Escape to the Chateau” – have you ever seen that show? I think it looks brilliant if you have that sort of aesthetic. It wouldn’t quite fit in our 1990’s era typical British house with carpet underfoot. :)
I haven’t seen it, but maybe I should :)
You should! (It seems right up your alley!)
Rita Tocta says
My heart stopped for a little bit when I saw your make up corner. So charming!
Loved the Hendrix song thank you for sharing …very inspiring!
I don’t think of 62 square meters that small but maybe is because I once lived in a 20 square meters in the city :)
Rita Tocta says
Oops! *Morrison! :)
The studio apartment I rented for a year in Washington DC was around 20 square meters for two of us and a cat. That was tiny! But I was 22 and madly in love back then :)
I think part of the reason this apartment feels so small to me is because the one I just moved from was cavernous and had 6 foot tall windows and two big rooms connected by double doors. And the bathroom isn’t really part of this apartment, which makes it seem even smaller. But that’s city living and I love it! I don’t really need more space for just Opie and me.
Oh, I have Hendrix lyrics, too :)
“Well, she’s walking through the clouds,
with a circus mind that’s running wild,
butterflies and zebras,
and moonbeams and fairy tales.
That’s all she ever thinks about.
Riding with the wind.”
LOVE the art! LOVE the bedroom! LOVE the idea of a bathtub in your bedroom, I mean, c’mon! We are also people who do not use top sheets.
Thanks, Sandi :) I love the idea, too… you know it’s coming!
P.S. Good call on the top sheets :)
OK, Sage, off & on, I’m back tho’ wish I could make myself be invisible… And as you know already I know I am not you, but taken aback when I saw “A Peek” in your post title, because just before I arrive here, I am thinking to myself, I’d like to say thanks to Sage for giving us a peek into her life adventures so we can live somewhat vicariously re: paths not taken….
Then the Alphonse Mucha! WHAT?!? No, I totally get your choice. I am a big fan. In fact, our Czech friends sent us a very nice & nicely framed one as a thank you for, when back in the iron curtain days, we gave them support to visit their dying son in the United States. And that makes me think, HMMM… That treasure seems to have disappeared since I took it to decorate my mother’s room at the nursing home. And darn! Because I liked it here and that was the one thing I thought “No matter, it will be mine later on.” Something else going on that I wasn’t aware I had to be worrying about too! If it is still there, may be I will steal it back… And she won’t notice it missing? (Terrible me, but she has so much else to distract her… And I worry that it isn’t there anymore — and if it is, it is lost in the clutter!)
Then you mention your practical plumbing idea that would have the tub in the bedroom. YES! When I was a teenager I wanted to be an architect, but as the only girl in the architecture class, (as well as other classes I took, but there as top student, my other teachers were egging me on to do something more with my life than what was expected at the time…). my architecture instructor asked me to kindly withdraw… But my dream house I designed back then was very simple and small and included a clawfoot tub in the bedroom… Because a bath is just that important! But tubs are probably not the norm in Scandinavia? So since you are not me, you may feel free to decide against, but do float the idea of relaxing into a tub of effervescent bubbles to soak all worries away before crawling toasty warm (& clean!) into bed for a good night’s sleep?!? And just because you have a bathtub in your room, you don’t need to have your toilet next to your bed, which I actually have seen! More than once. Which I understand, but it is more than offputting.
OK, disappearing again.
Your Mucha print sounds amazing and I love the story. I sincerely hope it’s still there and that you manage to get it back. Let me know?
Tubs are really not the norm in Scandinavia (even in hotels), probably in part due to the high cost of hot water. I draw the line at a toilet next to the bed, though I can sort of see the appeal in the dead of winter. But yes, a long bubble bath in my bedroom tub before bed sounds so hyggelig :)
As per usual, I am somewhat hating my comment left — as in, PHFFTT! Just who do I think I am?!?… BUT — have to know about your experiences with your bathtub in bedroom… Since I never actually did it in real life myself? So looking for updates.
To give you an update… Went to check, the MUCHA is there yet at the home. Just lost in all the clutter. But as she as the one who years ago actually helped these people (for me they are just fond memories of people I once knew), with her it deserves to stay as a reminder of good deed done despite the risk. I LOVE your “headboard”, to say the least. Have you seen the one he did with the cello player? I almost think I have to have it — love the cello as an instrument — but do I really? Sad to say have never seen that one again since the first time witnessed despite some searching.
Hope things are going along well in your world today. Take good care.
P.S. If I am reading the dimensions correctly, your apartment is the same size as my first owned house, it was a fixer including complete bathroom with tub & shower & sink & toilet… Cozy, but you can do a lot with that.
Mike Beavis says
Bathtub in a bedroom is awesome… We have been remodeling an 1860’s Victorian home in upstate NY for almost two years and in our downstairs bedroom we have just added a stand alone tub and it looks amazing in the room. At first we were hesitant but after seeing so many online pictures we decided to do it. Now mind you we have an old claw foot tub in our upstairs bedroom and a very large duel shower in the main bath. I would also like to tell you that the light that shows in your bedroom looks very warm and cheerful. Keep posting pictures and progress I am sure we will all enjoy the finished product.
I think I have house envy! Before I moved to Denmark my dream was to own a Victorian. I can only imagine how beautiful your downstairs bedroom is. Upstate New York has some gorgeous houses. I see a lot of them in the old house groups on Facebook and I used to travel with my grandparents though upstate New York in the summers. That might be why I love old houses, I used to ask why we couldn’t live in “a castle.”
I really lucked out with the light in this place, and I can finally see the moon again! I haven’t been able to see the moon from my window in almost 4 years. I’ve missed it.
So pretty and charming…the fairy lights (and Opie) make it comfy-cozy perfect.
Love the hygge vibe in your calm, peaceful and feminine bedroom! Most importantly, it’s yours. Perhaps you really do need a small clawfoot tub like one I spotted on Chateau de Gudanes’ IG account. Will post the photo on your FB page for you to see.
I love how the LV bag is admiring itself in the mirror!
Growing up, we had a clawfoot tub in our center hall. My mother put potted plants in it. It was definitely a conversation piece.
Yes, yes, yes to the tub in your bedroom!! What a great idea.
So your square footage is almost 670 square feet. In NYC that would be considered plenty of room ;).
As always, I love what you’re doing with your apartment. It’s airy, calming, and cozy. Such beautiful light from your enormous windows.
The Christmas lights make it feel so homey.