Welcome ladies and gentlemen to the latest obsession of 2017: Hygge (pronounced hue-gah) from the far off shores of Denmark.
The literal translation of this Scandinavian word doesn’t actually exist within the English language, however the closest comparisons would be a mixture of the following: cosiness, happiness, charm, kinship and comfort.
The basic concept of Hygge is to be mentally present within a moment and to be able to acknowledge the extraordinary in somewhat ordinary situations; alongside the ‘art of creating intimacy’ whether that be with family, colleagues, strangers or friends.
Created by the Danes, Hygge was used as a form of mental escapism and motivation during the longest and darkest days of their lonely Scandinavian winters. Quickly they learnt that the simplest acts of lighting a candle or snuggling up by a fire with a cup of tea made a huge difference to their spirits and ultimately their daily mind-sets. By creating small daily rituals of happiness that gave huge rewards with little to no effort, the Danes were able to create an actual art to their domestic and personal lives, and the end result of that art? Hygge.
Whether you start to buy yourself a weekly bouquet of flowers, take up knitting as a hobby or decide to develop an unhealthy addiction to board games, it’s all the same. Hygge is what you make it, and if you feel safe, content and happy – you’ve mastered it.
Sometimes it’s actually about the smaller things in life, and by stopping to smell the roses once in a while, it can actually make all the difference.
Happy Hygging everyone.
The Hygge basics:
- Go home
Eating out is overrated and expensive. Netflix and your sofa are calling. Go now.
- Decorate the ‘scandy’ way
One word – Ikea. Anything wooden, glass, cosy or white will pretty much do. Hygge is all about the atmosphere.
- Be warm
Whether that be socks, sweaters, blankets, towels, curtains or animal skins; be warm. Being snuggly is so underrated.
- Simplify your cuisine
Porridge, cake, fruit or a traditional roast. It’s all about things that are easy, carefree and accessible.
It’s all very well being Hygge by yourself, but in the true sense of the word – it’s better to share a moment (however mundane that moment may seem). So grab a cuddle buddy and settle down in front of a fire, board game anyone?
Article by Saffron Bowdler