You can take the foreigner out of Denmark, but…
Kasia is a Polish blogger with a love for Scandinavian living and design. Her love began to bloom while spending most of her grown up life in Denmark, where her children were born. In 2014, she moved back to Poland with her family. Kasia is an Instagram enthusiast and a real foodie. Her beautiful pictures and writings have been shared with some of Poland’s biggest magazines, and we have followed her journey with interest for several years so it was great to finally talk with her.
Why did you first move to Denmark?
The reason was rather common, I guess. I fell in love with a Dane. We met when I was still in high school, during my first summer holidays on Bornholm. Making a very long story short, we got married 8 years later, just before the last semester of my studies. After I graduated from University, we decided that it would make more sense for me to move to Denmark, where my husband had an established life, house and job. The relationship failed, but it was a very important part of my life path, for which I am grateful.
How does Denmark and Poland differ from each other?
These are two totally different countries, I think. To fully answer your question, I would have to write a book. Generally speaking, life in Denmark is less complicated and less stressful on a daily basis. But it is also less challenging and – in a way, less rewarding. The ideal situation would be combining some of each country’s qualities. Grass is always greener on the other side, as they say. When I lived in Denmark (for 12 years), I missed Poland. Now I miss Denmark. Luckily, my work enables me to enjoy both countries and do what I love with people of both nationalities.
“When you combine this search for
happiness in every moment with best design, standing the test of time, you receive life lasting products
that can repeatedly bring you joy.”
Besides interior design, have you implemented other Scandinavian approaches to life in your family’s everyday routine?
Having 3 children born in Denmark, it is very important for me to nurture their Danish identity. We try to speak Danish as often as possible (Andrzej, my husband, is Polish but educated in Norway so he understands us without problems), we celebrate Danish holidays, and try to find the perfect balance for our Danish life in Poland.
We watch Danish films and we listen to Danish radio every single day. We like cooking and we enjoy making typical Danish dishes, and each Friday, the kids get a portion of their “Fredags slik” – sweets that we bring from Denmark after each visit, so we have enough for a whole Friday on the couch cuddle. We also made friends with the Danish Ambassador in Poland and his lovely wife, who invited us to celebrate the Danish Constitution Day together at the Ambassador’s residence. I would risk a statement that we have a Danish home, just outside of Denmark.
Which Scandinavian trends do you see as the most profound?
Scandinavians have mastered all the ways to enjoy small moments, and what we call “hygge” has expanded to other continents. When you combine this search for happiness in every moment with best design, standing the test of time, you receive life lasting products that can repeatedly bring you joy. It can be small things. A candleholder that always stands on the table during moments of family time, a meal served on a beautiful plate that’s pretty enough to make you smile not only when you eat, but also when you empty the dishwasher. A set of beautiful bedding, a pretty lamp, decorating at all times of the day.
I strongly believe that you can, and you should, make your home reflect your identity. Some people like their homes “Scandinavian white”, some choose colour (so many amazing colours on Scandinavian walls recently!), but for me that is secondary. It’s more the small things you live with, touch, use and smell (!), that make (or don’t make) you happy. Scandinavians can teach you how to find that happiness in everyday moments.
All photographs by Kasia Rutkowiak.
What is your idea of the perfect day in Scandinavia?
I love Copenhagen and miss it a lot, so assuming it would be a day off in this beautiful city, I would love to find the time for a morning walk in the Botanic Garden while it’s still empty and quiet, a nice lunch at one of the many amazing restaurants, or a quick sandwich in Torvehallerne, a couple of hours at a museum like Glyptoteket or Torvaldsens sound pretty perfect to me, and an evening meeting with friends (with some more great food, of course). I must do it soon! Love the idea 🙂
You must, it definitely sounds like a day well spent! Thank you Kasia for sharing your story and your take on Scandinavian living, we hope to see you soon in Copenhagen. Get to know more about Kasia, her favorite interior design pieces and discover mouth-watering recipes on her blog, my-full-house.com and on her Instagram, @my_full_house.
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