How to hygge
We’re kicking off our new how to series by embracing the colder, darker days with a bit of help from the Danes and the notion of ‘hygge’ (pronounced hoo-ga).
Hygge has no exact English translation but is all about alluding to a feeling of cosy intimacy and contentment; curling up with a good book, tea and plenty of luxurious blankets and cushions. It’s about happiness and enjoying life, spending time with friends and family in front of a log fire, eating good food and drinking good coffee and wine.
Hygge is not just confined to Denmark, all the Scandinavian countries as well as the Netherlands and Germany have their own word for it. With our chilly, grey winters, it’s time the British did too!
Modern life is busy, we spend most of our days sat in front of a screen and face to face interaction seems less important. But hygge encourages focusing on small pleasures and enjoying life for the little things like chatting with a friend and taking time out to relax.
Here’s our seven top tips for embracing hygge and seeing autumn and winter in in the best way possible.
How to hygge
1. Candles – candles are perhaps the most important aspect of hygge, with Danes buying more candles per capita than anywhere else in Europe. That warm, fuzzy, orange tinged glow sets a cosy backdrop to your hygge evenings in with friends.
2. Coffee and tea – Nordic countries are infamous for their coffee habits and it’s not hard to understand why when you have a little cup full to the brim with steaming coffee and a dab of frothy milk. If you’re not one for coffee, give it a British spin with a cup of English Breakfast. Don’t forget some good company or a book and of course plenty of blankets.
3. Natural materials – Getting back to nature is a key aspect of hygge. Choosing high quality, natural materials for your house alludes to the outside whilst staying warm inside.
4. Dinner parties– If you ever needed an excuse to invite friends and family over, hygge is the perfect one. Spending time with the people you love is the best way to encompass the essence of hygge. A great evening together creates enough warmth and cosiness to fill your home with happiness.
5. Blankets & cushions – Stock up on Scandi blankets and cushions, in thick, natural wools and neutral tones.
6. Soft lighting – Add to the warm glow of all those candles with some soft lighting. Filament bulbs and copper accents
7. Woollen goods – Nothing says cosy like an oversized, fluffy jumper and thick, woollen socks to keep you warm
So as the days draw in and the frost begins to settle, embrace the Nordic approach and start enjoying the cosy hygge pleasures of the colder seasons!
Photo credits in order of appearance: Dave Lastovskiy, Jovi Waqa, Padurarius Alexandrie