A Danish Summer Cabin with 10 Garden Elements for a Dreamy Oasis!

Are you a fan of instagram? I have to confess I find it a little hit and miss these days, but right now it’s fantastic as I’m trying to figure out what to do with our garden at the cabin and my feed is full of dreamy garden inspiration. Which is how I stumbled upon this Danish cabin! 
Lærke Hentze and her family bought a piece of land in the beautiful village of Gilleleje, North of Copenhagen in 2017 and have since built a charming cabin from the ground up. You’d be forgiven for thinking it’s old thanks to a traditional Danish coastal vibe – in part due to the beaded wood panelling and earthy tones which have been carefully selected to reflect the surroundings.

In Scandinavia, summers are sacred, and the garden is an important part of the living space! Scroll on down to discover ten ways Lærke has made the most of their outdoor space to ensure a true summer oasis.  

But first, let’s start with the indoors: 

The darker blue cabinets in the kitchen help to add contrast and interest and also nod to the nearby Kattegatt sea. 

The main living area is completely open-plan with a kitchen, dining room and sitting room in one – emphasising the idea of togetherness, an important element of the Scandinavian summer cottage. 

A wood-burning stove is an essential piece of kit for a touch of Danish hygge! 


A striped sofa cover adds a subtle coastal vibe while a designer lamp and safari style chair elevate the room. 

Books are an essential element of any summer cottage, as hopefully you finally time to catch up on some reading! 

I love how vases are filled with flowers and foliage from the garden – no matter the time of year. 

A bar? Now we’re talking! 

And how beautiful is the vintage rattan bar cart? There are lots of similar ones to buy here* (affiliate link).

Rattan has been hugely popular for a while now, and I can understand why, it adds an instantly relaxed atmosphere, and on warmer, dry days it can be moved outdoors too! 

Possibly one of the most popular lamps in Denmark (and something I covet for my own cabin, is a Le Klint scissor lamp – beautiful! 

Time to move outdoors? Lærke has created a dreamy oasis from scratch. I discovered ten elements she has included for an idyllic Scandinavian summer cottage garden:  

1. The outdoor kitchen: When you have to endure the long winters that we do in Scandinavia, it’s important to embrace every moment of the warmer weather. Outdoor kitchens have become increasingly popular and don’t require much in the way of equipment. Freestanding units, a sink, and a gas or electric stove should do the trick. 

A spot under the eaves is used to dry flowers such as crown dill. 

2. Dining area: an obvious one, but oh how I dream about meals alfresco! Do as the Scandinavians and add cushions, blankets, oil lamps and lanterns so you can stay outside for longer after sunset.

3. A parasol: while we all love sunshine, it’s not so comfortable if you’re feeling the heat! The best parasols have a tilting function and should be around 50 cm to 1 metre wider than the space you would like to cover. 

4. An outdoor living room: why lounge around on the sofa indoors when you can lounge around outside in comfort! The rattan outdoor chairs are from Cane-line and the table is by Fermob. 

5. Summer flowers: the key, I have learnt from my Scandinavian friends, is to create a garden that requires as little maintenance as possible (after all, you’re there to relax!) and also flowers when you intend to use it – which in most cases in Scandinavia means June, July and August. 

‘Annabelle’ hydrangea, with its spectacular white pompoms is hugely popular here – and requires little maintenance. Lærke has combined hers with tall grasses for a more wild, natural look. 

6. An annex: seen here across the flower beds, an annex is ideal for extra guests and afternoon siestas – if you have the space! 

7. The fire pit: a log fire is great way to spend time outdoors in wintertime without feeling the chill! But they are also lovely on chillier summer evenings too. Keep it simple and surround the fire with a few logs for seating. 

8. The sleep shelter: If you head out into the wilderness in Scandinavia, you’ll spot these open-sided shelters along the trails. Made from wood, they provide shelter over lunch or at night – just add a sleeping bag and pillow for a good night’s slumber! I love how Lærke has included one in her garden so her family can sleep out under the stars. 

9. A hammock: so simple, yet so perfect to spend some alone under the boughs of a tree with a book! 

10. Somewhere to take a dip: Since a morning and evening dip are an essential part of summer life, Scandinavian summer cottages are rarely far from water – whether a lake, river, fjord or the sea. No water nearby? Add a simple bath like this danish cabin – or a small plunge pool! 
I hope Lærke’s idyllic summer oasis has given you some inspiration for your own home / outdoor space today. If you’d like to see more pictures, hop over to her instagram at @creating_a_cottage. 

Could you imagine spending your summers here? 

Have a wonderful start to the week! 

Niki

Photography: 1, 3, 4, 5, 6 , 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 ,15 by Copenhagen based photographer Chris Opander Tonnesen. Others by Lærke Hentze / @creating_a_cottage. Shared with kind permission.