Step inside our cozy hygge hideaway, and you can immediately smell the cookies baking and hear the crackle of the fire. Piles of pillows abound, plush comfy furniture offers itself as a cozy seat for snuggling up, and the floor is covered in layers of rugs and even more pillows. Harsh overhead lighting is forgone in lieu of glowing candles and twinkling string lights, and tranquil scenes of pastures and cottages hang on the walls. A gathering space for friends and family, we designed this room with the Danish concept of hygge as our inspiration.
We decided to show, rather than tell, what hygge is, and we also wanted to leave space for the concept to explain itself. Here’s hygge, in its own words….
Imagine if every time you walked into your living room it gave you a big hug. A hug that also swaddled you in chunky knit blankets with real, live puppies and placed a steamy cup of hot cocoa in your hands. That’s me, Hygge, and it’s oh so lovely to meet you!
“Who in the world is hygge?” you might be asking. That’s one of my favorite questions! (Oh, and I pronounce it “HOO-guh”) I’m not a person, I’m not a place, and I’m not really a thing either. I’m also not super flattered by being called a “lifestyle trend,” because I really hope you keep me around longer than your juice cleanse or your obsession with Pokemon Go.
I like to fancy myself more of a way of being, or a mindset of coziness that permeates Danish culture. I’ve been around for quite some time now, but it is only recently that I became so popular in the US (although the notion of ‘popularity’ isn’t high on my priority list, because I want to be everyone’s friend). I prefer slowing down, savoring the moment, and promoting a sense of well-being and connection. Ahhh… I’m feeling all warm and fuzzy just talking about it!
In case the next question percolating in your beautiful brain is “Where did you come from?” I have an answer for you! I am the proud descendant of the 16th century Norwegian term “hugga,” which means to comfort, or to console. Kind of similar to your English word “hug.” How wonderful!
Leaving behind some pointers to give us guidance, Hygge is happy to inhabit any home upon invitation. Peep the checklist below to learn how to invite Hygge into your space!
Hygge Home Checklist:
- Warmth and light – Turn off the overhead lights, light a fire in the fireplace, string up some lights, and top it off with some lovely candles.
- Get cozy and fuzzy – layered rugs, pillows galore (even on the floor), and blankets for days are my favorite tricks for adding a dose of coziness to any space. I especially love plush rugs and all things sheepskin!
- Keep it neutral and natural – I’m not neutral when it comes to my stance on color palette. I love an earthy palette because it fosters a calming environment. No bright colors please! I also prefer natural materials and finishes for the same reason. This should be a tactile environment that delights all the senses.