It may be difficult to pronounce, but the term Hygge ("hoo-gah") has become a design buzzword, marking a growing lifestyle trend around the world. Hygge has been a key aspect of Danish culture for centuries, being described by VisitDenmark.com as:
“In essence, hygge means creating a warm atmosphere and enjoying the good things in life with good people. The warm glow of candlelight is hygge. Cozying up with a loved one for a movie – that’s hygge, too. And there's nothing more hygge than sitting around with friends and family, discussing the big and small things in life. Perhaps hygge explains why the Danes are some of the happiest people in the world.”
And happy they are. Year after year, Denmark gets top marks for being one of the happiest places to live. According to the World Happiness Report, in 2018 Denmark ranked third out of 156 countries surveyed.
It stands to reason that adding some hygge to your own home could boost overall happiness and help elevate the cozy factor in your spaces. Here are some ways to help make your home your happy place:
LESS IS MORE
The key to Hygge is simplicity. When decorating, try to stick to a neutral color palette. Too many colors or patterns can be overwhelming, so opt instead for lush textures that feel good to the touch but are easy on the eyes.
Hygge is also best achieved when everything is in its place. Decluttering is not only more visually appealing, but it’s even better for your mental health. In fact, a four-year UCLA study found a significant link between stress and clutter. Women were affected more—with higher cortisol levels correlating directly with a higher volume of items to keep up with.
Basically, if you want serenity, adopt the minimalistic design aesthetic.
For some people, candles and soft music are comforting. To others, it may be a favorite photo or watercolor hung above the fireplace. Whatever brings you peace, start by decorating your space with accessories and décor that help you relax and breathe deeply. To that end, take hygge a little further by incorporating some natural scented oils or aromatherapy in your home to set the tone for comfort.
In today’s society, we are constantly connected. Whether we’re emailing, texting, or engaging on social media; we’re always on. Hygge is all about taking time for yourself and relaxing. Instead of turning on the TV, opt for curling up with a good book in your favorite recliner, or choose a night each week for a scented bath. Whatever you do, take some time to truly step away from the connected world.
BRING THE OUTDOORS IN
We all know that taking a hike or simply relaxing outdoors can be vital to to finding more balance in your life and building a sense of connection. Bringing nature into your home can likewise play a role in achieving a hygge lifestyle. Incorporating furnishings that use natural materials and eco processes help bring balance into your interior spaces while being environmentally friendly.
FAMILY & FRIENDS ARE KEY
While alone time is healthy, perhaps the most crucial part of making your home more hygge is those you share it with. Enjoying your time and home with those you value is precisely what hygge is all about.
This extends to the spaces you entertain in or share with friends or family staying over. Creating a serene spare bedroom or sleeping space with furniture that makes your guests rest easy and feel at home embraces the hygge spirit.
With the right décor, attention to details and overall mindset, you can easily create a home that promotes peace and well-being. After all, a hygge home is a happy home.