The art of cre­at­ing the cozy feel­ing of Dan­ish hygge


Hygge is a Dan­ish word (pro­nounced hoo-guh) that es­sen­tially means co­zi­ness and a feel­ing of con­tent­ment. There are a num­ber of ways this trans­lates into daily life, from the home to how one con­ducts them­selves through­out the day.

In re­cent years, word of the Dan­ish con­cept of cre­at­ing hygge has spread across the ocean with many Amer­i­cans won­der­ing what hygge re­ally means.

Here we pro­vide some tips on ways to bring hygge into the home, fol­low­ing a trip to Den­mark, in which we ob­served Dan­ish life and hygge first hand. 1. Bring soft­ness into your space. Hygge in essence means bring­ing warmth and co­zi­ness into the home. Decor el­e­ments such as pil­lows, throws, blan­kets and rugs are the per­fect way to achieve a sense of hygge. 2. Light a can­dle. Light­ing can­dles help pro­vide a sense of hygge by cre­at­ing a sooth­ing en­vi­ron­ment, while also bring­ing in wel­com­ing fra­grance. 3. Say it with a mes­sage. Through­out Den­mark, we found spe­cialty home stores in which happy and in­spi­ra­tional dec­o­ra­tive signs were sprin­kled among decor and dec­o­ra­tion items. 4. High­light your fire­place. Keep­ing warm by a crack­ling fire is an ideal way of cre­at­ing a sense of hygge. 5. Spend time out­doors. From bike rid­ing to walk­ing, spend­ing time tak­ing in the sights and sounds of na­ture are of­ten ways to get in­spired. 6. In­voke thought. Hygge is also about a sense of mind­ful­ness. One way to achieve this in the home is by in­cor­po­rat­ing in­sight­ful el­e­ments such as ex­pres­sive or in­ter­pre­tive art. 7. Un­plug from elec­tron­ics. Read­ing books and play­ing fam­ily games is a pre­ferred fam­ily ac­tiv­ity, as op­posed to sit­ting in front of the tele­vi­sion. 8. Clear the clut­ter. Min­i­mal­ize. One as­pect of Dan­ish hygge also re­lates to what is of­ten re­ferred to as “silent de­sign,” in which as much ex­cess as pos­si­ble is re­moved or tucked away. 9. Think white. White is a pop­u­lar foun­da­tion color in Den­mark, help­ing cre­ate a clean, calm­ing sense of seren­ity. The color is even of­ten used on floors. 10. Add wood ac­cents and green­ery. In­cor­po­rat­ing in­spi­ra­tion from na­ture is a cre­ative way to in­cor­po­rate hygge.

Tri­bune News Ser­vice

A pop­u­lar way to en­hance the spirit of hygge is to dis­play en­cour­ag­ing mes­sages through­out the home, as seen in this dis­play in Thisted, Den­mark.

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