How to Embrace Hygge at Home
What is hygge (prounounced hue-gah)? It's a danish word that doesn't have a direct English definition. It's a feeling of coziness and taking joy in life's ordinary moments. It's a nordic way of living centered around kinship and simplicity. I stumbled upon this article and it instantly sparked my interest. You see, Wisconsin has a lot in common with Scandinavia with its bitter cold winters. I love the idea that even on dark days you can create your own light. I truly don't think it's a coincidence that the Danish have been named the "happiest people in the world" .
The concept of hygge really resonates with us and the season of life we're in. In fact, this entire blog was started as a way to share what means most to us; snapshots of our journey to simpler living. Even as we've been designing our plans for our new house, it's very focused on a practical use of space, easy access to the outdoors, and use of natural materials.
HOW TO EMBRACE HYGGE AT HOME
We just picked up "How to Hygge" by Signe Johansen and am excited to spend a hygge filled evening with a cup of tea and candlelight reading it cover to cover.
Here are a few of the essentials for creating a cozy home and embracing the feelings of hygge no matter where you live!
OUR FAVORITE HYGGE PICKS
As Signe says in her book, "you can never have too many candles". We happen to be of the same belief. We almost always have one glowing on our coffee table each evening as we slow down after work and end our day. Hygge is about bringing nature indoors so choose scents that evoke memories of walks in the forests or crackling campfires.
Is there anything cozier than bundling up with a soft, throw blanket. After a visit to Ikea the other weekend, we're coveting faux fur throws in a big way. Consider having just a few blankets of different weights that you can swap out depending on the season. Just add a glass of wine and a Netflix movie you've literally described our perfect night.
Hygge is all about bringing the nature indoors (especially during stark winter months). Think about adding a windowsill herb garden to cook with, potted succulent plant, or a larger scale fiddle leaf fig to add some greenery into your space. No green thumb? Even a faux plant will brighten up your space.
FRIENDS & FIKA
Fika, we learned, is a daily Swedish "break" for coffee & treats with friends. I'd love to embrace the spirit of this by having loved ones over for a weekend brunch. Skip the slow drip coffee maker and opt for pour over and local beans instead. Taking a mid-day pause to nosh on some carbs and take your mind off work? This idea, we can get behind!
Another concept of hygge is that if you have less "stuff", there's less to clutter your space physically (and mentally). Freeing up more time to focus on the things that fulfill you and less time cleaning and organizing. This is something we've taken to heart in recent months. We even made our word of intention for the year, Simplify.
TAKE TIME TO SLOW DOWN
One of the things a lot of us have a difficult time doing is slowing down (myself included!). Taking a moment to cook dinner together rather than grabbing takeout, read a book, or drink your morning coffee and chat before starting your work day and totally set the tone for your week. I recently read that in Iceland, there's a tradition of giving a book on Christmas Eve. So, that evening is spent cozied up in a good read. As an avid reader, I'll never forget the Christmas that I received a large basket of books, it's one of my favorite holiday memories!
Before I even knew what hygge was, I've been trying to incorporate a little bit of it into daily life. I even have an entire Pinterest board dedicated to "cozy, winter vibes".
What's your favorite way to make the winter months a bit cozier? Are you as intrigued by Hygge as we are? Pretty sure this only wants to make us want to plan our trip to Norway to see Kyle's extended family even sooner.