”Our first home project together”

Patrik and Carolina bought a run-down old house and transformed it into a stylish minimalist haven. See the results and how they gave a cosy, traditional kitchen a sleek, user-friendly update.

Meet Patrik and Carolina

”We’re complete design nerds: Patrik studied furniture design and I am a jewellery designer. We wanted to work together on a project once we’d graduated, but we couldn’t decide what. Then I found this house in the west of Gothenburg, near the area where I grew up. It was a rat hole! But it had lots of potential. We spent two years doing it up.”

Our style

”We mix flea-market finds with pieces we’ve inherited from our grandparents and more modern, almost industrial items. We’ve tried to find a minimalist style that is still comfortable.”

Our home room by room

”Leave breathing space”

”We like an open, airy feeling so we kept the living room floor as uncluttered as possible. We picked a few key pieces – a quality sofa, good lights, statement chairs – and left space around them so they can breathe.”

”Room for entertaining”

”Patrik’s grandfather designed and made the table and chairs. It’s great having a big table so we can have dinner parties. When we renovated, we had a lot of help decorating from our friends, and cooked a lot of dinners in return.”

”Cook with friends”

”We redid the whole kitchen, as it was so old-fashioned before. We wanted an extra-long work surface so friends could cook with us, an integrated fridge and two sinks – one for washing plates and another for cleaning vegetables. My family runs a restaurant, so we were influenced by an industrial aesthetic.”

”Keep it bright and simple”

”We had to dig out the cellar to create the bedroom – that was absolutely the worst part! It took two months of digging and it was really hard to see the potential. We’ve kept it light, bright and simple to help erase the memory of what was here before!”

”Make items to measure”

”Patrik’s office makes the most of the dead space at the end of the hallway. Instead of putting a bulky desk in there, we attached a made-to-measure wooden board to the walls, and put filing cabinets beneath it.”

”Use the garden shed”

”My studio is in a shed in the garden. I’m glad that now we’ve finished renovating I’ve got time to get back to making jewellery.”

”A nod to the past”

”The house has such a lovely old-fashioned garden, with lots of apple trees. The house was built in the 1920s, and we wanted to keep the original feeling of the property while making it a great space for us to live in.”

Our tips and ideas

Challenge expectations

”We wanted to keep the floor space open, so we use a small side table as a coffee table. Think about what works for you: you shouldn’t have a big coffee table just because that’s what’s expected or usual.”

Add details in new ways

”We like to see out, so we’ve chosen to not have curtains or blinds on our windows. That means we can burn candles on the windowsills, and create little “still-life” displays on them.”

Fresh touches

”In summer I always lay the table with flowers, as it feels fresh. I tend to just stack the crockery and cutlery in the middle of the table so people can help themselves. It makes life so much easier for me!”

Stylish storage

”We don’t have built-in storage or cupboards, so our storage containers are also decor items. Everything has its place, like cotton-wool pads that are kept in a beautiful glass jar.”

Use textiles

”It’s easy to update treasured old things with new textiles. We simply covered the seats of Patrik’s grandfather’s chairs with new fabric, which completely changed their appearance.”

Our kitchen makeover story


”The kitchen has seen the biggest transformation. It had some old charm hidden under the dirt, but it was really outdated and in a terrible state of disrepair.”


”We ripped the whole kitchen out and started again, aiming for an industrial look. The cupboards are in basically the same position, but we extended the work surface. We felt wall cupboards would intrude on the room, so instead we have open shelves to display our cookery books and vases.”

”The new kitchen has its own cooking area, where we keep pots, pans and knives. We choose a series of pendant lights to hang in a row above the work surface as a more stylish alternative to integrated lighting. They provide direct light for food preparation.”

”We wanted the kitchen to be a really nice place to hang out. Patrik’s grandmother’s antique table softens the sleek feel of the rest of the kitchen, and makes for a lovely place to sit and have breakfast.”

”We agonised over the details. We even painted the walls three times – white is not just white! It was so important to get the kitchen right, because it is the hardest room to change later. We’re really enjoying life here!”