This Swedish Retreat Fuses Scandinavian Vibes With Traditional Barn-Like Style

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By Jennifer Baum Lagdameo
A local architect intertwines an unexpected twist to the design of this summer home in Sweden.

Set amidst pine trees in a forest near the sandy white beaches of the Southeastern Swedish province of Scania, "Summerhouse Sandby" is a minimalist wood-paneled summer retreat designed for a family of four by the Lund-based firm Johan Sundberg Arkitektur. The wood-paneled home exudes contemporary Scandinavian minimalism, yet it also encompasses the vernacular traditions of local farmhouse construction. 

The modern gable construction is a riff on historic building traditions in the region. 

The modern gable construction is a riff on historic building traditions in the region. 

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The exterior of the home—including the wooden deck and pergola—is clad in Siberian larch that has been treated with a silicon–based sealant to protect it from the salty sea breezes. The angled roof utilizes the same material, with the panels arranged in an overlapping pattern. 

The light-colored larch and expanses of glass provide the home with a natural vibe, while also helping to integrate it into its sylvan setting. 

The light-colored larch and expanses of glass provide the home with a natural vibe, while also helping to integrate it into its sylvan setting. 

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"Its materiality is more closely related to the barns of the past than to the conventional Scanian farmhouses," explains the architect. 

"Its materiality is more closely related to the barns of the past than to the conventional Scanian farmhouses," explains the architect. 

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"The home is in dialogue with traditionally constructed rural houses. With its wood-clad façades and roof, its materiality is more closely related to the barns of the past than to the conventional Scanian farmhouses. In its design and detail, however, the house is unmistakably contemporary and modern," explains Sundberg. 

The deck and pergola appear to be a natural extension of the home. 

The deck and pergola appear to be a natural extension of the home. 

The roof's overhang also employs paneled Siberian larch. 

The roof's overhang also employs paneled Siberian larch. 

The use of larch extends into the 1,797-square-foot interiors. The living areas are divided into two levels. 

The master bedroom and bathroom are located on the ground floor—along with a generous dine-in kitchen and a living room—while the top floor contains two children’s rooms, a bathroom, and a common room, which could easily be converted into a third bedroom.

Sliding glass doors allow the kitchen and living room to be fully opened to the deck, creating a seamless integration between the interior and exterior space.

Sliding glass doors allow the kitchen and living room to be fully opened to the deck, creating a seamless integration between the interior and exterior space.

Shop the Look
Sibast No 8 Chair
Sibast No 8 Chair
In 1953 Helge Sibast designed the chair Sibast No 8. A Danish design classic, which was part of the Danish design wave in the 1950’s and 60’s, and was sold around the world. Now more than 60 years later the chair is the first to be re- launched by the grandson and his wife, Ditlev & Anna Sibast.
Menu Tied Pendant Light
Menu Tied Pendant Light
The Tied Pendant Light, designed in 2016, has a simple and versatile design. A ceramic cylinder that holds an exposed bulb hangs from a fabric-covered power cord. The mixture of materials adds visual interest and complexity to the minimalist design.
Gloster Loop Coffee Table
Gloster Loop Coffee Table
Natural finish teak frame & slatted table top.
The dine-in kitchen and living area are divided by a double-sided fireplace and chimney. 

The dine-in kitchen and living area are divided by a double-sided fireplace and chimney. 

Large windows and skylights provide ample natural light, which is reflected off the larch interiors and white ceilings.

Large windows and skylights provide ample natural light, which is reflected off the larch interiors and white ceilings.

The skylights and light color palette allow the home to boast a bright and airy feel. 

The skylights and light color palette allow the home to boast a bright and airy feel. 

All of the rooms on the upper level have skylights. 

All of the rooms on the upper level have skylights. 

Project Credits:

Architect of Record: Johan Sundberg 

Associate Architect: Max Germundsson 

Structural Engineer: SG Svensson AB, Sven-Göran Svensson 

Building Contractor: Bygg AB, Morgan Ristmägi, Mikael Hermansson, Helge Johnssons  

Interior woodwork: Malmö kök & inredning

Photography: Markus Linderoth