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Scandinavian Style Dutch Cottage Tour

Hello readers! Are you ready to tour a light and bright Scandinavian style Dutch cottage? It’s Holly Marder again and I am back with my Homes With Heart column. While many vacate their summer homes for the winter season, warm textures, endless light and understated Christmas touches make this petite residence the perfect winter escape for owners Nathalie Fransen and Bas van Egmond, and their three children.

decor8cottagedutch (click to enlarge)

Interior designer Nathalie Fransen and co-owner of NU interieur | ontwerp, and architect Bas van Egmond purchased this 38 square meter vacation home late last year as a place for them to escape to the Dutch countryside on the weekends with their children. Once a brown, dark and dated interior, Nathalie and Bas spent the summer creating what is now a light, bright and welcoming space.

decor8_dutchcottage_6(click to enlarge)

“We live in a really small apartment in Delft, the Netherlands. While we love our urban lives, we wanted to compensate it with a bit of nature,” Nathalie says. “We were really lucky to find this space. It was owned by an old couple who had lived here for 17 years. It was no doubt already dated 17 years ago, but they didn’t change a thing. You could feel that they really loved the space, as if it was some sort of treasure.”

decor8_dutchcottage_1(click to enlarge)


The first thing Bas and Nathalie did was coat the dark interior with white paint, replace the kitchen and bathroom and infuse it with their minimalistic sense of style. “We decided that painting it white would freshen it up, but would also make it look and feel a lot larger,” Nathalie explains.


White floors infuse the space with light but are also surprisingly low maintenance. “I want our kids to have the freedom to be children, but I really like neat spaces,” Nathalie explains. “Therefore, I seek solutions that can ensure the space can be tidied up easily after the kids are in bed, such as smart storage.” As a designer, Nathalie, with her business partner Tessa Weerdenburg, strives to offer the same combination of practicality and aesthetics to her clients.



Design classics and inexpensive Ikea products combine with a black, white and wood colour scheme, making for a charming Scandinavian style retreat for this family of five. “We love to combine old and new, sentimental items that have been handed down, with new pieces and also inexpensive items. We were lucky to inherit design pieces from Bas’s parents because they know we appreciate them.” The family escape to their cottage most weekends, and love to continue that tradition through the winter. And though they don’t make as much use of the garden as they do during the summer, they enjoy creating a warm and cozy cottage to enjoy when the temperatures drop.

Spot something that you love? Here are some of the items in Nathalie and Bas’s home: Lamp above dining table: Vintage Arne Jacobson AJ Royal Louis Poulsen lamp; Royal Shelving System: Poul Cadovius; Dining table and stools: Ikea; Sofa: Ikea Soderhamn; Coffee table: Montis Tor Table; Paper star; lanterns: Snug Studio; Paper lantern bags: Broste Copenhagen; Wooden bird: Architect Made; White vases: Snug Studio; Kitchen / storage: Ikea; Grey throw on bed: Zara Home; Graphic throw blanket on sofa: Hema; Cushions on sofa: Dille & Kamille (green); Marble cheese board: Lijns

I hope you enjoyed this fresh and festive cottage tour! Wishing you all a wonderful Christmas and New Year, and I’ll see you back here next month with another Homes With Heart column. – Holly

(text/photos: holly marder)

Posted by Holly Becker in Home Tours on December 20, 2013

Your comments...

  1. caroline @trend-daily commented
    December 20th, 2013 at 6:27pm

    I dream of having a bright, white and clean home just like this Holly! Really lovely! :-)

  2. Dana @ chocolate and sunshine commented
    December 20th, 2013 at 6:39pm

    Enjoy the Scandinavian style — light and airy as a bit different from the USA midwestern style in my area. Love both, yet, interesting to spot new ideas! Waiting for an Ikea to finally open in my area as just announced this month.

    Merry Christmas!

  3. Rincy K commented
    December 20th, 2013 at 6:43pm

    That clean white palette is so beautiful. Tempting to do the same for the start of the new year :)

    Stunning as always HM xx

  4. MIU DESIGN BLOG commented
    December 20th, 2013 at 6:54pm

    beautiful pictures! I like this style :))

  5. Aga @ Passion shake commented
    December 20th, 2013 at 7:59pm

    It really does look fresh :) The lamp above the dining table caught my attention since I’m in the process of finding one for our home. Yep, I like it a lot :) Thanks for this home tour Holly and Merry Christmas to you too :)

  6. Lucy Chen commented
    December 21st, 2013 at 8:43am

    This is so clean and minimalist.

  7. Marie Solveg commented
    December 21st, 2013 at 4:17pm

    I simply love the Scandinavian stile.
    Light and lovely.

    marie Solveg

  8. Gudy Herder commented
    December 21st, 2013 at 4:19pm

    It is easy to create a beautiful home having a lot of space. The true miracle is when you make look 38sqm look as if you could work, live and have guests in there. The bench under the window is a clever solution too to give an extra sensation of space. Very nice article, Holly Marder. Such a great column! x to Holly B. too.

  9. Kelly Jeanette commented
    December 21st, 2013 at 6:04pm

    What a wonderful place! I could so totally live here, just with a few more touches of color. I love the minimalist look and it’s great for a small house or apartment. Thanks for sharing it.

  10. Louisa commented
    December 21st, 2013 at 11:38pm

    Hi holly, wow another lovely find. Very inspiring and refreshing especially at this time of year x

  11. Kathleen Alexander commented
    December 22nd, 2013 at 6:51pm

    My home always feels cluttered after viewing Scandinavian designs. I don’t know if I love the look because I want my house uncluttered or I actually love love it all. That does it. I’m painting the whole house white and getting new furniture. Wait, I’m renting. Could be an issue. I still love looking at it all and these pics are beautiful Holly. Thank you!

  12. Olivia commented
    December 22nd, 2013 at 8:09pm

    I love the stunning white- this design has really achieved balancing that with a natural feeling of warmth. This has such a beautiful palette- I’ve always wanted to accomplish a minimal look like this in my home, but it is a hard thing to pull off! Very lovely, thank you for sharing!

  13. decor8 commented
    December 22nd, 2013 at 9:31pm

    @Gudy – Yes, so true about the difficulty in working in small spaces. Though I have to disagree (sorry!!!) when you said it’s easy to create a beautiful home having a lot of space. My current apartment is 210 sq mtr and my next one will be 222 sq mtr and I find it the most difficult space to decorate BECAUSE of its size. There is just so much space between the high windows, the huge doors, the nearly 4 mtr tall ceilings – everything has to be custom or fitted or handmade in order to decorate this new place. For instance, no curtains (not even the extra large sizes from IKEA) will fit the length of the windows! Decorating a large home is extremely challenging and there are times when I wish I had a small apartment again because my first apartment in Germany was 55 sq mtr and it took me very little time decorate it because everything I found in stores fit perfectly!

  14. Kate commented
    December 23rd, 2013 at 7:41am

    I love the windows filled with green and the home filled with white.

  15. Amanda Brigde commented
    December 23rd, 2013 at 10:37am

    Thanks for your content! I’m a blogger and all of your content is a reference for me! I shared your blog in my front page! Congratulations I’m felt inspired, continue the great work!

  16. Emma flynn commented
    December 24th, 2013 at 1:52pm

    Can you tell me were are the shelves from.Thanks

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