To Shop: Thrifting Scandinavia

DSC_0926 modifSince I’ve been living in Sweden I’ve become quite the thrifty lady. Back in the Netherlands I used to visit some of my regular 2nd handshops, but it isn’t as big as it is here, so I only went every couple of months to see if I could find some gems. But here in Sweden, due to all the environmentalism, 2nd hand is huge. And when I say huge I mean it. In Stockholm alone there are quite possibly more than 100 shops scattered through the city centre. Malmö was the same, there was a certain district where you could go, or the vintagemässen. Only problem with those chains is that it’s so popular. 2nd hand is almost as pricey as something newly bought, or even more expensive, considering the product. Last month (or by now 2 months ago) we were in Boräs and I visited Myrorna and Emmaus, and yes it was fun, but they also know how to price, ergo no shopping for me.

Where we live now is quite industrial, so I was pleasantly surprised to find a second hand shop, and because it’s in such a unexpected area it is cheapie cheapie, score! Yesterday I made a quick stop over and found and original print from Skansen, always nice to spot something like this.IMG_6411.2

Previously I’ve written about which shops/chains are nice to visit, but today I’ll introduce you to some Scandinavian brands. My bf calls me a brandwhore (excuse the language) ’cause I like Scandinavian design so much. I don’t look for branded goods perse, but it’s always nice to spot a cheap gem. By now, I know what to look for and which factories no longer produce. Even though I’ve lived here for quite some time, I still find it really nice when I find products from Swedish (or Scandinavian) ground, as if I’d found a cool souvenir or something, yes I’m a total materialistic dork. So here are some tips for the shopping travellers, keep your eye out for the following (I’ll also list some price indications)

For trinkets and kitchen supplies my favourites are:

Bodum, everything from coffee presses, tea cups to storage boxes . This Danish glassware mogul is hip and happening. I think a coffee press 2nd hand starts at around 200 kronors.DSC_0532

Höganas: probably one of my favourites out there. It’s from Skåne that’s one, and two their ceramics are just so simple and modest,but they mix it up with colour. The best thing is that they keep the heat compounded in the cup, making it possible to leave your coffee out for 15 minutes. Very easy to use and always nice to spot a good deal. Please note that prices can vary from shop to shop. We’ve come across mugs for 10 kronors, which can be 60 in another shop.DSC_0929 modified

Iittala. A a finnish supplier. It’s not really my favourite, but the manfriend likes it, so I’m stuck with it.

Kockums: Finding emaille homeware from Kockums is rare. They haven’t produces since the 80’s or so. This steel-manufacturer is more into the shipping industry and now makes enormous windmills, so I guess that’s a bit more profitable than plates and mugs. Nonetheless, their pots and pans are so gorgeous, I’d want to have it all, and on the plus side, it lasts for a lifetime. Mostly I’ve spotted kockums at those deserted farmlöpis (fleamarkets, in literally the middle of nowhere) but sometimes you can find it here and there in one of the chains, if you’re quick. Kitchen supplies start at 50kronor, normally a pan will be sold for around 250. No one said it was cheap.KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERA

Eva solo: simple and clean design. Perfect watering cans. I think it’s Danish? They have this perfect lid, which makes sure I never spill, as I am one clumsy girl.

Arabia: A popular ceramics brand among the Swedes, while it’s actually Finnish. I’m not a huge fan of it myself, but they do have popular mugs from the cartoon Moomin. I haven’t really kept my eye out for it, so unsure about the prices, but I guess it’s in a similar price-range as Höganas.DSC_0535

Brio: children’s wooden toys. It’s extremely popular here and I can see why, their designs and use of colours are great. Normal retail value starts at 30 euro’s I think, so finding a fun toy is both cheap and, for most Swedes, nostalgic. Found one in Holland last april for 25 cents, woot woot. But normally here in a 2nd hand I guess it would go for 50 kronors. 

Ferm living: Another children’s brand, and not really my favourite because their combinations of prints is sometimes a bit ‘screamish’, but their fluffed animals and prints are very cute. I have yet to come across it in 2nd hand stores. 

Guldkroken hjo Sweden. Also a company that not longer produces, but they’ve left some funky things behind.DSC_0932

Kosta Boda: I personally think it’s so ugly, but the hipsters really like it, probably because it’s so ugly.

Indiska tea cups. Not really a vintage homeware brand, but the big tea cups are just the best. I always, always use my Indiska ‘bowls’ for tea. Keep your eye out for the right sizes (and sales!) New they’re always quite pricey, about 100 kronors a cup,  so finding a 2nd hand one is a winner.indiskaathome DSC_0554

Ok, this post has already gotten too much out of hand, I’ll post some clothing tips another time.

Any items you’re missing from the list?love sign


  1. Te gek! <3 thriftshops. En lekker cheap in Nederland! Check ook is een concept store in een shopping mall waar ik voor werk. Van een super toffe chick en alles in de shop is to-die-for…

    • Oh bedankt voor de tip!! super vet! Veel Noorse en Deense merken die ik nog niet ken. Ik vind kringloop dus ook echt heel leuk, af en toe beetje onderhandelen met de verkopers en voor een prikkie iets meenemen, alleen jammer dat het hier dus idd zo ‘duur’ is.
      Mocht je ooit beneden de rivieren komen: dit is een van mijn favorieten in Nederland. Ook een emmaus, maar heel groot, in een oud klooster met diverse afdelingen en achter de balie staan mensen die re-integreren in de samenleving, en prijzen worden ter plekke verzonnen, lekker goedkoop dus!

  2. O my, wat heb jij een mooie vondsten opgeduikelt. En Ferm Living, wow dat is zo’n tof merk. Ik ben zelf niet zo goed in mooie vondsten vinden, terwijl anderen altijd mooie dingen vinden 😉 Zullen we afspreken dat ik eens met jou ga zoeken? Kom ik wel naar jou toe 🙂

    • Hej! Ja ik vind het ook altijd heel erg leuk hier beetje rond te neuzen. Er is hier genoeg aan 2e hands winkels, dus bij deze staat de uitnodiging open. Houd er dan alleen wel rekening mee dat je uren, misschien wel dagen kwijt kan zijn aan winkels afstruinen 😉

  3. Great post. I’m a flea market junkie, but mostly have items from Germany. Never really knew much about Scandinavian finds but I’m glad I have an idea now. I’ve been really into Scandinavian style lately. I think everyone has!

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