In a previous article I mentioned that hygge is a fairly untranslatable term, filled with a lot of meaning. Recently, it seems to have also turned into a movement, a phenomenon that goes beyond the confines of interior design. A way of life for many people.
Hailing from the Danish language (and pronounced ‘hoo-gah’) hygge is a word associated with coziness, warmth, and enjoying the little things in life. The concept also includes good memories, wellness, and contentment in the company of friends.
Interestingly, the origin of the word hails from a Scandinavian root that is also responsible for today’s ‘hug,’ as in the act of embracing someone.
So you now see that hygge is all about love and comfort, and that translates directly to the furniture. Some examples of hygge-inducing or hygge-filled furniture are cozy, padded couches from the Scandinavian style, as well as huge beds and lounge chairs with ottomans, all of them firmly upholstered and overtly filled with high-density foam.
So what about making your space a little more ‘hygge’?
Remember that ‘hygge’ is more of a feeling than an element of design per se, it is like asking “how can I make my living room happier?” Getting to it depends a lot on what actually brings you joy and comfort, so don’t get too caught up on formulas or individual tips. Furniture can help you, but so can changing some habits you might have in your current lifestyle. Are you getting enough sleep? Are you eating homemade food?
Take a moment to consider that we didn’t say healthy food, but homemade. Cooked by you or a loved one with your favorite ingredients. That’s a really ‘hyggelig’ thing, as they would say in Denmark.
Try to rely on natural light as much as you can, and get organized, but don’t go full minimalist. Consider adding some natural touches to your home, if you enjoy plants and that sort of thing.
Also, if you’re a reading person, use your books as ornamentation. There’s an old saying that a house without books is colder than other homes, and this might be true for a lot of people, including yourself. If you can, also switch completely to warm and low lights, and avoid staying up late.
A warm color palette can also be a very hyggelig thing, and when you pair it with warmer lights, it’s going to be perfect. Don’t be afraid to mix-and-match textures, as long as you do it with comfort in mind. Modernist furniture in the Scandinavian style can give you a good place to start, as long as you can sink on it.
As a final piece of advice, start at the bedroom. This is a very personal space, maybe a lot more than your living room. Attempt to put some of these ideas into practice via your own personal touch, and then move on to the rest of the house (if it ends up working for you).