How is it that the Danish are amongst the happiest people in the world despite facing 17 hours of darkness during winter months, whilst in the UK we want to curl up into a ball and hibernate the moment the days start to draw in?
Recently it’s been suggested that it’s the concept of “Hygge” (pronounced hoo-gah); a uniquely Danish phenomenon with over 20 books having been released on the topic. It’s difficult to translate into English but at it's heart is the feeling of cosiness at a psychological rather than physical level.
Although designers suggest hygge is not something you can buy, but a state of mind or feeling, there are ways that you can introduce this concept into your home and make it cosier.
So with reports suggesting that snow’s on its way, how can you incorporate this cosy Danish concept into your home?
Keep it simple
This trend is not about making your home look like it belongs on the pages of an interior design magazine. Keep the colours muted, and rely on simple furniture and accessories. White walls are particularly popular in Denmark. This understated background will help you incorporate hygge into your home without it starting to feel busy and cluttered.
Celebrate your heritage
Antiques, old photographs and sentimental objects will all make your home feel cosier! Incorporate your history into your interior design.
Avoid plastics and acrylics; fill your home with candles, cashmere throws, faux fur, woods and soft, natural coloured rugs. Cover your sofa in textured, cosy blankets and cushions - how better to stay warm and cosy on a cold day?
The harsh light of an overhead lamp can quickly take away that cosy feeling, however comfortable the room is. Place lamps where they’re needed, ensuring they’re sufficient for your needs (think reading lamp, table centrepieces) without being overbearing. The Danish are thought to buy more candles than anywhere else in the world, so take a lesson and light some in your house – cosy and energy saving!
Taking it further
Creating your own reading nook or a window seat could bring you to a new level of cosiness and the ultimate hygge centrepiece is a log fire!
If you’re looking to take the concept of “hygge” further and need a craftsman, contact a Master Builder.