= Swedes + deSIGN*

: function, aesthetics, and affordability

SwedeSIGN [Swedish design]* scene is more vibrant than ever despite the size of economy. Traveling the world over, but heart and soul remain in motherland. Diversity is a significant keyword that describes their creativity, and the drive to combine functionality with beauty and efficiency is pervaded by many other aspects of Swedish culture. Emotional values are now reckoned to be as important as function in Swedish craftsmanship and design in general. Everything is tested and retested: both aesthetic norms as well as traditional ways of working. Swedish crafts have seldom displayed the vitality or range of expression they display today. You can find everything from traditional crafts, with glass and semi-handicrafts, to designers working with modern designs and materials.

Sweden’s penchant for practical innovation stems in part from geography; it is kind of a necessity when resources and materials are limited. SwedeSIGN: textiles, furniture, household objects and glassware – you will find the same practical, democratic, aesthetic, natural and increasingly sustainable approach to design. In Sweden, design is synonymous to lifestyle: discreet, understated, functional and cool. Consequently, SwedeSIGN is often described as simple, minimalistic and functional. The main influence is said to be the poor living conditions and poverty of Swedish society in the 19th century. The era was defined by values of simplicity, humanity and democracy, which set a new direction for the Scandinavian countries. Another crucial point in common is “design for affordability”. SwedeSIGN provides high quality design and craftsmanship that is truly affordable.

Design reflects the societies’ value and attitude. Swedes believe in a well-meaning ideology underlying the slogan “more beautiful things for everyday use” with form dictated by function. Resulting in a new kind of democratic design, inspired by feminism and postmodernism, they pursue for designs that are able to tell people using them something of the historical and material culture in which we live. Sweden is very different from capitalism societies; elitism attracts strong criticism. They often express themselves in modest terms. The high concept design culture is rooted in the country’s socialist ideology. Swedes have an overarching belief in equality with deep sympathy for the underdog. This is a core element if we think about social design, or design for the bottom of the pyramid. This is a good design attitude to have as well as how swedes have been expressing their unique identity. There is a sense of humbleness, authenticity and modesty, and the Swedish “lagomhet”, which is appraisal of modesty, and humbleness. Swedes are believed to stand for: honest, functional, good value like Ikea or H&M. Minimalism and practicality are virtues, and there is no shame in having the same couch as everyone else on the block, which can be a big cultural difference from others. The Swedish word lagom, which means “not too much, not too little.” and describes the notion that something has to last for everyone. It is what Swedes strive for, the yin and yang ( 阴阳 ) of design.

The Chair November

The chair November* is a crafted chair made entirely out of wood. A unique, high quality stackable wood chair is described as beautiful, comfortable and sustainable. A great ergonomic shape retains all of its sculptural look and feel, which sum up Scandinavian design and Nordic tradition. / Peter Ejvinsson, Industrial designer at Veryday.

Stockholm Cutlery

Stockholm cutlery* combines streamlined matt-polished steel with smooth black handles. The functional aspects of ergonomics and production find the right balance and weight. Artistic expression: strong visual, emotional and tactile qualities create a collection of everyday jewelry. / Jesper Ståhl with Design House Stockholm.


A solitary shelf can be combined with additional LIBRI* shelves alongside against the wall, back to back. Free standing or several shelves in a row out from the wall creates a room divider. / Michael Bihain with SWEDESE.


Button* uses the textile parts: SWEDISH FABRICS in a true patch-work spirit. The parts meets in the center where a large button keeps everything in place. / Form Us With Love with Mitab.


The hair care and styling products by Salon SACHAJUAN* are made in Sweden. The simplicity and function in perfect harmony with high quality and innovation make the brand experience unique and interesting.


The true tastes of Vodka : ABSOLUT VODKA*, produced near Åhus, Skåne, in southern Sweden. The 18th century medicine flask found in an antique store in Stockholm provided inspiration to the iconic ABSOLUT VODKA bottle.



This is a post by David Report contributor Jaeuk Jung.

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