An introduction to Japandi design (and more)

by J.D. Roth

As Kim and I begin our house hunt, it’s become clear that I am drawn to mid-century modern design. Yes, I realize that’s a bit clichΓ©. Mid-century modern (or MCM, for short) is popular with many, many people.

For me, I’m drawn to MCM β€” or any sort of modernist design, really β€” because it seems to be the United States’ closest approximation of two other design paradigms that I find appealing: Japanese and Scandinavian.

Both Japanese and Scandinavian design seem to emphasize the same things: simplicity, clean lines, natural materials, and so on. Turns out, I’m not the first to notice the similarities. In fact, Japandi (as it’s called) is a hot design trend in 2021! (Here’s a blog post about employing Japandi in a traditional ranch home.)

I just spent the past two hours down an internet rabbit hole as I tried to learn more about Japandi design. Since I don’t want to forget what I’ve learned, I’m going to share some of the things I liked best here.

Here’s a ten-minute video on how to decorate Japandi from the Posh Pennies channel on YouTube.

And here’s a sixteen-minute video from Nick Lewis that explores the same subject.

I haven’t watched that one yet, but I will just as soon as publish this blog post. πŸ˜‰

Lastly, I enjoyed Joe Allam’s 21-minute “Made in Japan”, which explores traditional craftsmanship in the Ishikawa and Gifu prefectures.

Although I’ve been drawn to this sort of design my entire adult life, it’s only recently that I’ve considered decorating my home this way. And it’s only in the past year that I’ve realized it’s possible to purchase notebooks and pens, etc. from Japan.

So that I have a permanent resource for this stuff, here are some links (most of which I have not explored thoroughly) to sources for Japandi design inspiration and Japanese products.

And here’s a list of semi-related companies that sell high-quality and/or elegant items that aren’t necessarily Japandi, but which are related in my mind.

Kim and I already own a few pieces that would fit well (if not perfectly) in a Japandi home. I have the four Stickley items I bought in 2009. She owns a couple of black cabinets. And, of course, technically all of my Ikea office furniture is Scandinavian haha.

We’ll see where we end up. If the home lends itself to it, maybe we’ll pursue Japandi interior design.

Updated: 06 July 2021

Do what's right. Do your best. Accept the outcome.
Copyright © 1994 - 2022 by J.D. Roth