Swedish Vocabulary: ‘Lagom’ Edition

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Swedish Vocabulary: ‘Lagom’ Edition

We’ve been reading Linnea Dunne’s book, “Lagom: The Swedish Art of Balanced Living,” and we’ve found a few vocabulary words that piqued our interest.

Some of these words are literal translations, while others are untranslatable concepts that don’t really have an equal word in the English language.

Here’s your vocabulary lesson of the day. We’ve gone ahead and put words into two groups – “lagom” and “not so lagom.”


  • Förankringsprocessen: a concept for running ideas by everyone impacted by them
  • Mjukisbyxor: soft trousers
  • Sambo: a partner you live with
  • Pyttipanna: a dish made up of leftovers
  • Tallriksmodellen: the plate model, the amounts of grains, fruits, veggies, etc., every plate needs to have
  • Loppis/loppmarknad: flea market
  • Husvagnssemester: a caravan holiday
  • Köpstopp: deciding not to buy anything for a period of time
  • Plastbanta: plastic detox

Not So Lagom

  • Mellis: a substantial snack
  • Lördagsgodis: Saturday tradition of filling deep paper bags with sweets
  • Kulturtant: cultured lady
  • Förfest: the phenomenon of holding a house party before a night out

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