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If you haven’t yet discovered the works of  Stieg Larsson, Jo Nesbø and Henning Mankell – among many other Scandinavian crime masters – you are missing out. Scandinavian Noir has been here for, oh, decades now, but its power and charm never fades, it seems. There is more to Scandinavian crime lit than just morally-complex and exceptionally-dark stories – the decor inspiration and iconic design it brings are also to die for (see what I did there?).


BBC 4 afficionados will already know these, but if you are a Nordic Noir novice, and want to penetrate the innerworkings of the Northern mind, plus gawp at some fantastic interiors, make sure you add these series to your winter watchlist: 1864, VAN VEETEREN, THE LEGACY, CRIMES OF PASSION, UNIT ONE, THE PROTECTORS, ANNO 1790, MAMMON, SEBASTIAN BERGMAN, WALLANDER, THE BRIDGE, ARNE DAHL, THE KILLING, THOSE WHO KILL. As you might have guessed from these titles already, lots of humans die at the hands of less than humans. But they do so in some magnificent interiors.

Have a look at these sensually dark and massively chic outdoor and indoor spaces:

Like the vibe? Here are some products that will help bring some sombre sophistication into your home:

Diamond wire lighting fixture from | Kuu gauze lamp  on | Moja candle lantern from | Geometric mobile on

Finally, follow these tips for a never-to-be-bored-with Nordic Noir nest:

  • For soft furnishings, go for luxurious, dark textile textures.
  • For furniture, look for timeless design in attractive dark shapes.
  • For accessories, add black geometry or metallic wire shapes to a sparse interior.
  • Soften the darkness by adding vivid greenery, fresh flowers or shrubs in deep reds.
  • Add natural textures such as bamboo and jute, and warming accessories, like fur and mohair rugs and throws, to further cosy up the look.
  • Remember, Nordic Noir is not ornate Gothic – keep it simple, timeless, minimalist and relaxed.

For more Scandinavian patterns and colours, see my Ranelagh house tour here.

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