As soon as I saw this Finnish summerhouse I had flashbacks of the many summer holidays I spent in Finland as a child with school friends and their families. Growing up, many of my friends and neighbours were Finnish, thanks to the working immigration of the 1960s, when many people left Finland to find employment in Sweden. As a result, I could easily converse in Finnish as a child, although I’ve forgotten most of it now, sadly.
What I haven’t forgotten is how to spot the difference between a Swedish and Finnish summerhouse. Yes, they’re both Scandinavian, and they both feature the characteristic white, bright interior, but there’s something a little more graphic and raw about Finnish interior design. The Finns’ use of black and exposed wood is more courageous. Perhaps it has something to do with the harsher, colder climate in Finland compared to its Scandinavian neighbours.
This summerhouse – on an island in the Finnish archipelago – was built by the owners. Tucked away amidst the mossy landscape, the home blends in beautifully with the natural forest. Measuring just 45 square metres, the property comprises the main house and a guesthouse. The left side of the house is the living area; the right side consist of a sauna – well, what would you expect in a Finnish summerhouse?
The kitchen nook is tiny and very simple, which would suit me, as most of my time would be spent outdoors. And of course no Finnish kitchen would be complete without potatoes – they’re part of every meal!
The main bedroom is characteristically white and bright. I love the use of white timber on the walls and ceiling – it somehow adds warmth in a stark room. And same materials and colours have been used for this bed which make it transparent and almost invisible!
Yes, the piles of wood are practical and essential, but to me, they look like an artwork in themselves. Isn’t the texture and the design just beautiful?
The must-have sauna has been positioned to make the most of the view. Enormous windows look out over the archipelago and create a feeling of tranquillity.
And look! What other type of placemat could possibly be used in a Finnish summerhouse than timber offcuts? With Marimekko plates on top, every meal would be a feast on this summer holiday.