Imagine that you’ve just been on a hike in the snow with some friends. Your cheeks are pink, the tip of your nose is delightfully chilly, and your breath leaves clouds in the air as you walk home. Once you make it inside, you light a fire, curl up in a warm woven blanket, and drink a mug of hot cocoa. Can you feel the coziness? Isn’t it just wonderful?
This feeling of sleepy, contentment is hard to define. Luckily, there’s a word for this very sensation, brought to us straight from the masters of winter-time coziness, the Scandinavians: Hygge.
Hygge is having a major moment in interior design, and no wonder! Hygge (pronounced Hoo-gah) is a Danish and Norwegian word that is defined as having a quality of coziness and comfort that creates a feeling of contentment. As a design aesthetic and lifestyle, it looks and feels like a hug. Who wouldn't love that?
This week we decided to turn our office’s entry way into a Hygge paradise, and share some tips on how to easily transform your own space into a cozy, elegantly styled oasis, just in time for what’s promising to be a snowy weekend.
Before: Our office's entry way is currently styled to be glamorous, with an edge. We love pops of bright color, the combination of black and white with geometric patterns, distinct objects, and details that are chic in their simplicity. By contrast, Hygge style asks for soft neutrals, gentle curves, eclectic objects, mixed textures, layering of soft goods (think blankets and pillows), and as much warmth as possible.
After: With a few easy additions and swaps, we turned our entry way into a Hygge dreamland. We placed a rug in front of a cushy chair, accessorized with plush pillows in neutral shades, and added two warm throws to really amp up the "cozy". On our entry way side table we added candles, an eclectic array of nature-inspired items, and books perfect for winter-time lounging. To top things off, we added some greenery to make the space feel ultra-relaxing.
To create your own Hygge inspired space, check out these tips from our designers:
1. Layer up on the pillows and textures-
Hygge is all about comfort. Style your bed/couch with throw pillows that differ in size, texture, and fabric. Try to stay within a neutral color palette but do add soft colors like a sage green, light blue, or earthy mustard. Anything that gives you that feeling of earthy comfort will do. Also, try to add a few soft blankets to your chairs and couches.
2. Add greenery-
Place plants throughout your living space to create a relaxing, contemplative space. It's a scientific fact that living amongst plants has a calming effect, so add a floral arrangement or fern to your home design!
For more tips on how to incorporate greenery in your home design, check out our blog from September!
3. Invest in good candles-
The Hygge experience is incredibly sensory. Get softly scented soy candles and place them among your shelves' accessories, on your mantle, and as far as the eye can see. If your fireplace is decorative, rather than functional, put a collection of pillar candles of varying heights right in the fireplace cavity and spill them out onto the hearth. The goal is to be as cozy as possible. Candles add literal warmth, soften the lighting of your room, and with the right smell, can relax and soothe you.
4. Use soft lighting-
Hygge lighting is soft, and flattering. Think of the way a room looks bathed in firelight and try to emulate that. Use lamps with "warm glow" light bulbs that have low wattage and place textured shades on the lamp that will dim the light bulb's glow, further. If you're so inclined, you can also decorate with fairy lights! Drape them over your mantle and on your bookcase.
Remember- Hygge is all about the senses. When you design a Hygge space, you have to think about the way things will feel, the way they'll smell, and the way they'll look.
Good luck designing your spaces and remember to stay cozy!
If you use our tips, send us photos of your own Hygge designs at firstname.lastname@example.org for a chance to be featured on our Instagram!