Swedish-design textiles, furniture, household objects and glassware has a practical, democratic aesthetic and increasingly sustainable approach to design. In Sweden, design is synonymous with ‘lifestyle’. Try Svenskt Tenn, Bruno Mathsson, Carl Malmsten, Kosta Boda and Orrefors glassware. Enough with the name-dropping already, let's check out 7 design and fashion musts in Sweden:
The Dala horse is the most bought Swedish souvenir. It is a stylized wooden horse most commonly found in red with a typical folk art decoration called kurbits. The Dala horse has been made since the 1600’s in Dalarna and is still today mainly manufactured in a village called Nunäs outside of Mora in Dalarna. www.theswedishwoodenhorse.com
ICEHOTEL is a hotel built each year with snow and ice in the village of Jukkasjärvi, in northern Sweden, about 17 kilometres from Kiruna. It is the world's first ice hotel.
Ice sculptures and other artwork made of ice is one of the most popular features at the ICEHOTEL in northern Sweden. Artists come from all over the world to help fill the walls, floors and ceilings of the hotel with unique and ephemeral designs. Even the rooms are works of art. www.icehotel.com
Invisible Bicycle Helmet
Hövding is a collar for bicyclists, worn around the neck. The collar contains a folded up airbag that you'll only see if you happen to have an accident. The airbag is shaped like a hood, surrounding and protecting the bicyclist's head. The trigger mechanism is controlled by sensors which pick up the abnormal movements of a bicyclist in an accident. www.hovding.se
Experience the story of how a small-scale furniture supplier in Småland became one of the world’s most well-known furniture shops. The IKEA museum is situated in what was once the world’s first IKEA store in Älmhult, Småland. www.ikeamuseum.com
The Turning Torso is the highest skyscraper in Scandinavia with its 190,4 m and 25 floor. It is a residential building and was designed by Santiago Calatrava. www.calatrava.com
The center houses four departments; atronomy, biotechnology, fysikum, physics and is a collaboration between University of Stockholm and The Royal Institute of Technology. The building itself was designed by Henning Larsen and named Stockholms most beautiful building in 2001. www.albanova.se
Kiruna, a mining town, is the northernmost town in Sweden. The entire town is in the process of moving, house by house, a little to the east. The ground under the town is about to become too unstable to support buildings due to the deep mining close by. These rental units by architect Ralph Erskine will be torn down while other buildings, such as the clock tower and church, will be moved.
Kiruna’s move will happen slowly, under a period of 85 years. As new neighbourhoods are built on Kiruna’s eastern edge, old ones will be torn down. The idea is to preserve as much as possible of the town heritage, such as the earliest structures.