Hygge (pronounced Hoo-gah); it’s that elusive word that alludes to a lifestyle of contentment, of warmth and cosiness, and, of friendship and family. Scandinavian in origin, it appeals to our fascination of a culture where the home is most definitely where the heart is. In this Nordic cluster of a few small countries there is more design influence than the rest of the world combined, so is it any wonder?
New Zealand, as a country is new, we are often left looking at the rest of the world wondering why we do not have traditions like Hygge that define us as a nation. Why we do not have as many celebrations of seemingly small and insignificant events that unite us such as those in Scandinavia? These questions leave us romanticizing about the European culture.
While Hygge itself in uniquely Scandinavian its values are something that we can recreate with a twist; Hygge NZ style. Here in the Southern Hemisphere we have more daylight hours than those in Northern Europe so we don’t need the enveloping warmth which defines Hygge but the contentment that Hygge brings can be adopted in different ways that is unique to our own families and beliefs.
A sense of wellbeing is often related directly to feelings of warmth and comfort, of simplicity and relaxation. To create this you don’t have to replicate the Scandinavian Style, your unique sense of style can bring a Hygge of your own.
How to Hygge your home…
- Create Warmth by turning off the downlights and light the candles or turn on the lamps.
- Add texture and warmth by adding layers of throws, sheepskins and cushions.
- Tell your own story by displaying your favourite things; your collections, whether they be a pile of interesting books, a shelfful of jugs or a collections of baskets on the wall.
- Create Spaces by adding a rug under your sofa and positioning furniture to promote conversation and comfort.
- Bring nature indoors; Houseplants give life to a space. Flowers give off a vibe of care and thoughtfulness.
- Let the sunshine in; Use floaty curtaining or blinds that allow more light through your windows and air your home regularly.
- Create indoor outdoor flow, In warmer months decorate and use your outdoors as if it were a room inside your home.
- Make a time for the family to talk, mealtimes are often the best way to gather your tribe and share in a positive environment… Think about how you shop and ultimately cook and eat, often, a home cooked meal is a lot quicker than a trip to get takeout, and ditch the barstools for the dining table at least once a day.