Off the coast of Sweden, on the rugged island of Gotland, there’s a tiny holiday retreat that proves minimalism can also be cozy. Called Littorinahavet 7, and designed by Swedish firm Skälsö Arkitekter, the one-storey house is located atop a craggy hilltop overlooking an abandoned quarry. Inside, neutral tones and untreated wood finishes abound, with the only pops of colour coming from potted house plants, eclectic accessories, and the surrounding trees. While this kind of classic Scandinavian minimalism can feel a tad empty in large houses, when it’s compacted to 538-square-feet, the result is surprisingly inviting and warm.
The exterior of the one-storey cabin is made of untreated pine. As it weathers with age, the pine will naturally grey and blend into the rocky landscape. These large windows not only allow plenty of natural light to come streaming inside, they also all open to help keep the space ventilated.
The walls are painted a soft white and the floors are made of local pine. An open-concept layout makes the most out of the limited square-footage, as does the multipurpose furnishings. In the kitchen, a high dining table doubles as an island for food prep, while in the living room, a cushioned bench can turn into an extra bed.
Even the furnishings are super minimal. The bench-cum-bed is merely a platform topped with a mattress and the floor lamp is essentially a bare lightbulb attached to a wooden tripod. Stacks of books, a patterned rug and pretty yellow and green plants provide the only additions of colour.
In the winter, the house is heated by this small wood-burning stove. Our only qualm? It’s missing a firewood holder! Personally, we’d pick something simple, like this rack made of iron that’s shaped like a cabin.
Like the main room, the principal bedroom is very minimal too. Rather than a bedside table, the homeowners are using a modern chair with a lamp clamped to the back.
Here’s one of the entrances to the house. Since it’s facing an abandoned quarry, the homeowners have so much privacy they don’t even need curtains to cover these large windows.
And here’s another entrance to the house from the courtyard. To keep the building’s footprint as small as possible, the architects built the L-shaped home around the existing nature.