Katerina Dima, on the power of Lagom and ‘life in balance’
The multi-talented creative blogger, architect, photographer and stylist of Only Deco Love talks us through her Lagom journey of discovery. How do we incorporate this philosophy into our daily lives? How much is ‘too much’? Katerina Dima guides us through simple living that’s ‘Just right’…
As an Architect, the phrase “Less is more” has played a large role in my design process but I’ve always tried to incorporate my own personal touch to the philosophy.
At University, my friends will remember me for saying “Less is not more when it’s the right amount”. I wasn’t aware that this wasn’t a novel idea until I moved to Norway and I became familiar to the concept of ‘Lagom’, roughly translated from Swedish as ‘appropriately in balance’ or simply ‘Just right’. There’s a Swedish proverb that makes perfect sense; ‘Lagom är bäst’ which translates to ‘The right amount is best’; the concept of my life-long design mantra.
Since Vogue discovered Lagom, it has been hailed as the successor of Hygge however I am sure many will agree with me that they have been applying Lagom in their lives long before Vogue quoted it - even if they have never visited Scandinavia. Lagom is not the next Swedish design craze, in fact, the very meaning of the word prohibits it from this, so how can the concept of being well-balanced turn into a consumeristic sensation? Lagom is not an interior ‘trend’ but rather a way of living in balance.
I personally would love to see it being adopted by as many people as possible, I have been a long supporter of the art of decluttering, moving towards a more curated aesthetic; something I’ve always advised my readers.
If Lagom is something that you are hoping to adopt in your day to day here are some key rules that I follow myself:
- First and foremost, edit your own space. Let there be air around and on top of your furniture so the room can breathe. Coco Channel said it best; “Before you leave the house, look in the mirror and take one thing off.” Edit, and be practical about it.
- There is a reason why architecture takes a practical approach to the design process. Take inspiration from what is practical and necessary then let this guide your decisions on what needs to be introduced or removed from your space.
- Make things less complicated by allowing the beauty of natural materials to shine through. The warmth of raw oak, the softness of linen, the purity of marble, the inviting feeling of a mirrored surface…
- I just moved to a new apartment in Oslo and I packed very little to come with me from my previous home on purpose. It is important to choose home accessories that you truly love. For me, this was statement pieces with classic, contemporary shapes; elegant materials that will translate into my elegant new space.
- Just like Lagom, recycling is not a novel idea either. It is best to sell something you are tired of rather than just throw it away when you want to replace it.
Image credit: Katerina Dima