When I knew that I was going to Stockholm I had one thing on my mind; shopping. Which, yes, I know, is a major shocker. Shopping is not something we talk about very often on the blog because honestly, none of us here at Reflections Enroute HQ are big shoppers, in fact, when it comes to material possessions we’re pretty minimalist, though not completely, let’s be honest.
I don’t care very much about clothes, I am far too picky when it comes to shoes and aside from food and eating out, our buying needs are generally pretty low. But there is one thing that I do love that is pretty much completely unnecessary and a total indulgence; interior design, and more specifically Scandinavian design.
My love of interior design is nothing new, even as a kid I always had to have my room exactly as I wanted it. Moving around as often as we did, I relished in the idea that I would have another room to design just for me. When I was a kid my room was all about the current pop star and whatever books I was currently into.
When I was a teenager it became very punk rock. As a young adult I became more interested in a bohemian, traveler, free spirit aesthetic. When I moved out on my own, I was pretty low on funds, like most young adults, and relied heavily on the design aesthetics of IKEA, thus, a love for Scandinavian design was born.
I am still a big lover of Ikea, in fact, check out our recent post in which we visited the brand new Ikea Museum! Ugh, dream come true! And I still pretty much must have an Ikea pull out sofa in my home, along with a few staples, they’re market section is my fave! But my tastes and knowledge have grown a bit beyond Ikea and I was very excited to do some shopping for “smalls”. So before I went to Stockholm I made sure to have a list of stores that I knew I needed to at least step into, if not to buy (because honestly, who can afford Swedish prices) then at least to appreciate.
The most iconic Swedish design store that I can personal think of is Svenskt Tenn. It is located in in the old town of Stockholm, close to the main harbor and the Palace. It is right in the middle of everything and the prime real estate definitely reflects on the prices and overall feel of the shop, it is a higher end establishment, but definitely worth a look inside, if nothing but to drool over the displays.
The nest destination I chose to go is a small area of Sodermalm, referred to as SoFo. SoFo was definitely the most hipster spot we made it to in Stockholm, and that’s saying a lot. The two main stores that I knew I wanted to patronize were Coctail and Grandpa.
Approaching the stores, we knew right away we were in the right place, the Coctail was vibrant, the street itself was buzzing with life and hip young people. I was not disappointed by the wares, but didn’t end up buying much due to the prices. But what I did find was a very vibrant neighborhood with extremely interesting and cool shops that were very instagramable.
There were many more home goods stores and hand-made havens than I could count and my feet soon began to protest in pain so we had to peel ourselves away and head back. However, I would recommend SoFo to anyone who is inclined to wanting to find the real side of a touristy city, the part of city that is lively, not because it is filled with tourists but passionate locals and visitors alike with a common interest. Next time you’re in Stockholm do yourself a favor and feast on the unique vibes of SoFo in Sodermalm.
Have you been to Stockholm? Where’s your favorite shopping area?
Author Bio: Corinne Vail is a travel photographer, food lover, and a perpetual traveler who has been travel writing for over 14 years. For many years she lived overseas in Germany, Japan, Turkey, South Korea, and the Netherlands teaching the children of the US. military. She’s visited over 90 countries, and she’s not stopping anytime soon.