If you thought
Scandi style was all untreated floorboards, raw woods and monochrome walls, softened by natural textures – hygge, in other words – think again. There’s a place in some Nordic hearts that loves to be creative with colour and, for evidence, we need look no further than the Copenhagen home of Fie Aspöck Jonsen. Swooninducing pinks, petrol blues and turquoise and subtle aubergines and eau de nils vie for our attention, tied together with splashes of daffodil. ‘There’s something about yellow,’ says Fie. ‘There has to be a little of that shade in every room – it’s something that’s always been a part of me.’
Fie’s father was a painter and his work has had a major influence on her life. ‘A love for art is in my blood,’ she says. ‘I want lots of it around me. Colours were also a big factor in my childhood, as my parents were constantly changing the look of our home, and where some may find it a bit chaotic and messy, I find comfort in artwork and colours and love to be surrounded by them.’
Not that this beautifully composed palette sprang fully formed from Fie’s imagination, rather it was developed over time through trial and practice. She and her husband Ulrik found this period property some two and a half years ago and since then, have been busy renovating the interior, knocking the two apartments they inherited back into one complete house. ‘Ulrik oversaw the practical elements, while I came up with the decorating ideas,’ says Fie. ‘We had to live in the place for a while before we could sense which colours to bring into play – I’ve gone through countless swatches in order to find the exact shades. A house this size is a challenge because the light in a room is always changing. Just when you think you’ve found the right tone, it looks wrong as the hours pass.’
Two other elements were essential components of Fie’s schemes: firstly, her extensive collection of artwork and objects – ranging from family heirlooms and flea-market finds to contemporary Danish paintings and her own colourful creations, such as the study of paint-dipped vintage spoons that now hangs in the kitchen – and secondly, her love of floor coverings, an attachment that grew out of the time she and Ulrik spent in the UK. ‘We lived in London and have brought with us the idea of comfy floors,’ says Fie. ‘We Danes are traditionally a bit afraid of them, but they do add so much cosiness to a room.’
Another English import that Fie was keen to introduce was the chalky tones of Farrow & Ball’s paints, spreading from the soft, seductive Dix Blue in the entrance hall and the understated grey/ greens of Ammonite and Mizzle in the kitchen through to the silvery hues of Light Blue in the dining area – the perfect backdrop to her more outré paintings and collectibles. The kitchen, in particular, provides a calm, reflective centre to the house, allowing the other spaces to forge more spectacular identities. ‘It’s entirely bespoke,’ Fie explains. ‘Our carpenter built the cabinets and the fronts, while the brasswork is especially crafted. We also had the marble work surfaces imported directly from an Italian quarry.’
It’s still a family home, though, and Fie made sure that her children can hang out in comfort with their friends. ‘Nothing here is too formal,’ she says. ‘We wanted to create a relaxed atmosphere, where everyone can put up their feet and enjoy themselves.’ Her son, Emil, who was born prematurely, has an especially important role in Fie’s life as it was he who was the inspiration for her company Gobabygo, which makes unique crawling tights and non-slip socks for babies to help strengthen their motor skills when learning to crawl.
With only the first floor of the house still a work in progress – Fie is keen to liven up the pastels that predominate here – she can now concentrate on pulling together more eclectic pieces and artwork in her ever-growing collection. ‘There’s nothing wrong with mixing styles from different eras,’ she says. ‘For me, this is what it’s all about – finding an item that fits with my own look, without giving a thought as to its history, or whether or not it cost a small fortune.’ As long as it’s bursting with colour, we suspect it will catch Fie’s eye… Learn more about Fie’s company Gobabygo at gobabygo.co.uk