What the Heck is Lagom? A Sweedish Concept you Should Know About

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I've recently started learning about the Sweedish concept of Lagom. This trend is showing up in design, art, literature, and more. If you are making and creating crafts to sell, you might want to learn more about what is Lagom and how you can embrace it.

So, personal story time! My family is hosting a foreign exchange student this year. L is a high school student from Italy, and we absolutely adore having her here. It's been about 5 months since she arrived, and in that time I've come to question much about the way I live my life, as I see it from her point of view.

To L, and her friends from other Europen Scandinavian countries like Sweeden and Denmark, much of what we do here in America is excessive. In some ways I think that's exciting for these young people, but in other ways I sometimes feel like they are really overwhelmed.

Lagom is, I think, the opposite of how many Americans live. American culture can definitely be described as “a little much”, especially compared to European cultures, that value different things.

What Does Lagom Mean?

The concept of Lagom comes from Sweeden, and is the idea that there is a “just enough” spot where you should aim to be. It's like the story of Goldilocks. Baby's bear's bed was just right, and it was the most comfortable. Other words that sort of mean the same as lagom are “enough, sufficient, and adequate”.

Lagom doesn't just apply to things like furniture and food though. It can be applied to all aspects of life including relationships, work, and leisure. The idea is that if everyone takes enough from the world, everyone can be happy. The goal is balance. Lagom has been called “the secret of Sweedish contentment”. Maybe this Scandinavian idea will catch on.

This post contains affiliate links to products that I want you to see. If you click on one of these links and make a purchase, I may be compensated. Thank you! Full policy Here.

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Sweedish Design is Trending

Sweedish design has been trending for some time now. Ikea likely started the trend in the United States with their inexpensive and simplistic furniture and wares. In 2016 we experienced the concept of Hygge, which is about being cozy and comfortable, but Lagom is a bit different. While Lagom isn't a design style, it's popularity is certainly inspiring home design, art, and products.

How to Live a Lagom Lifestyle

Before I get in to the design trends that you should know about, let's get a bit more serious. If you plan to create and market lagom inspired crafts or art, you should also be able to live the life, right? Knowing what the goals of lagom are is a good place to find inspiration. Start with these basics of the lagom lifestyle, drawn from Linnea Dunne's book:

  1. Comfortable Physical Space. Employing lagom in your day to day life will allow you to have a decluttered space that has the things in it that you need and nothing more.
  2. Calm Mental Space. Removing unnecessary distrations and focusing on what's important will have a profound impact on our mental wellness.
  3. Improved Finances. Participating in a lagom lifestyle should mean that you spend less money.
  4. A Sense of Purpose. This lifestyle promotes cooperation with neighbors and community.

Should I create Lagom Things to Sell?

Is this a question of morality? I'm not fully qualified to make those sorts of decisions. Sure, people from Sweeden should probably get first rights to profit off of their long-known life secrets. Are we appropriating their culture if we do the same? You'll need to decide that for yourself.

What Lagom Items are Selling on Etsy?

A brief search on Etsy shows me that Lagom is a thing that is starting to trend. A few weeks ago, Etsy released it's quarterly update for sellers that told us it would be!

Even if things aren't branded and tagged as “lagom” there are things that would automatically be considered such.

woman in cotten dress holding a reusable bag filled with flowers
  • Recycled, reusable, sustainable, refillable, and long lasting items. Because in lagom you will want to buy something only once, or not at all, customers interested in this concept will be more likely to buy things that will last.
  • Items made from Natural Materials. Look for wool, cotton, wicker, and wood items as decor, clothing, and accessories
  • Plants. Growing, living things are not generally seen as clutter.
  • Natural Home care and body care products. Consider creating cleaning products or soaps that are low impact to the environment.
  • Seeds, Gardening Items. Practical things to help people create their own food at home will be a big part of the Lagom lifestyle trend.

So while you don't necessarily need to create items for your etsy shop that are Lagom, you can keep the basics in mind as you decide to create new things. Lagom Items are going to sell on Etsy, but I can't predict how saturated the market will be or if it will even catch on as strongly as others are saying.

Read more about it yourself. If you feel a strong connection to the concept of Lagom, maybe it's time to make those changes in your life and see how that comes out in your art?

This post contains affiliate links to products that I want you to see. If you click on one of these links and make a purchase, I may be compensated. Thank you! Full policy Here.

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