Hygge in the Home

Design Trends & Ideas

Embrace this Danish concept in your home design and lead a more meaningful life.

Hygge. Have you heard of it?

If you haven’t, you’re probably thinking we’ve made a grave typo. If you have, you’ll know it’s a Danish word pronounced [Hoo-gah]. Hygge is a culturally encompassing word that Scandinavian countries live by. It has no one translated meaning but instead encompasses a feeling of content and happiness, of enjoying the simple things and being in the moment. Think of how you feel reading a book and sipping a warm cup of tea or sitting on the porch swing watching the day go by, or going on a walk outside just for some fresh air. That’s Hygge. And people are making a home design trend of it, carrying this feeling throughout every aspect of life. Just check out the 5 million #hygge tagged posts on Instagram to feel its cultural impact for yourself.

Hygge is Backed by Facts

But this concept isn’t just another fleeting, hogwash lifestyle trend. Hygge has been shown as an effective measure for creating happiness. Bhutan, one of the happiest nations on earth, popularized a socio-economic measure for happiness that factors in everything about an area, from psychological well-being to community vitality. This measure called The Gross National Happiness Index is used this as their primary development indicator, in place of standard indicators like GDP (Gross Domestic Product). This Index anchored in statistics and backed by economic principles influenced the creation of the World Happiness Report, which reported the Scandinavian countries of, Finland, Denmark, Norway, Iceland, and the Netherlands, of which Hygge derives, as the top five happiest countries in the world in 2019. While factors like health and government impact this rating, the cultural indicative measures of community and culture, which encompass influences like Hygge, are a huge factor. 

This goes to show that perhaps embracing some Scandinavian cultural outlooks, might do some good in your home. But the concept of Hygge isn’t just a design trend you can add to any room instantaneously.

The word Hygge carries a weight that implies notions of kinship, safety, and security.

This means enjoying moments by simplifying life and cultivating ambiance. Decorating with Hygge at the forefront of your plans is designing for the sanctity of the mind, body, and spirit. The basic principles of how to achieve the look and incorporate the concept into your life are simple.

Step 1: Simplify

In a Marie Kondo-esque (See her book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up or Netflix special) methodology, you can start crafting a room brimming with Hygge by removing things that do not work, hold no function, or bring no joy. Easy enough to start. Focus on function, purpose, and items that add warmth, engagement, and joy.

Step 2: Build a Sanctuary

Accent for Ambiance

Incorporate soft furnishings, plants, natural textures and objects that are inviting and create a soft ambiance. Some of these notions are similar to biophilic design, the design theory that mimics the natural world to promote engagement with a room and lower stress levels. Cozy, warm, accents might vary from person to person. In general objects like pillows, throws blankets, lush rugs, decorative textiles, and décor that evokes the natural environment will create a sense of calm and provide a welcoming atmosphere. 

Set your color scheme

Color-wise, Hygge inspired design typically ventures apart from current trends of cool greys and blues, and incorporates warm, bright colors like oranges, pinks, reds. But again, Hygge is also about personal sanctuary; so preferences for color that evoke an ideal atmosphere for comfort and tranquility will vary. Colors and patterns in a Hygge inspired home don’t have to mimic catalog perfection, be hyper trendy or excessively matching; make it your own. The idea is that the calmness and comfort you feel in your own space will carry to others and make them feel at ease. 

hygge in the home is added with layered of texture
A Hygge color palette is up to your preference, but cozy bedding and soft furnishings help create a comforting atmosphere. Mix and match window treatment styles for layers of warmth. Allure, Genesis and Soft Fashion Draperies are seen here.

Focus on lighting

Provide ambient light, both natural and artificial. You’ll find no overhead bright bulbs or fluorescents in a Hygge home. Embrace lamps and lots of candles for soft, warm light. Highlight outdoor views and take advantage of moderate natural light with window treatments. Soft fashion roman Shades, increasingly popular Austrian Shades, or flowing draperies will work to add color and filter light to your liking. Plus, they will naturally soften up a room with soft layers. Natural textures work well in Hygge inspired design as well. The organic look of Woven Wood Shades might be a great addition to your space. If you choose a functional shade to filter light like a Cellular Shade or Traditional Roller Shade, color and comfort can always be added in soft fashion accent treatments, like swags, accent panels, decorative valances or cornices.

Step 3: Live It

Your home decked out in cozy interior décor won’t be enough to create the ideal Hygge space. This will take some action on your part. Incorporate some of these hospitable tips and Hygge will be exuding from your home:

  • Serve lots of warm cozy drinks. Provide your guests with tea, cocoa, or coffee. This small act of hospitality will give them something to warm their stomachs and their hearts. 
  • Draw your shades or blinds with a purpose for each time of day. Maybe when the sun is setting keep them open for gorgeous views. Too bright during the day to be peaceful? Lower your shades for some light filtered ambiance. Going motorized or automated with your window treatments is an easy way to set the mood automatically without extra effort.
  • Do you have a fireplace? Light it up. Nothing like a warm, crackling fire to make each moment memorable.
  • Light those candles. Warm cinnamon vanilla, sugar cookie, or relaxing lavender; whatever your scent preference, flickering candles will help build a warm atmosphere with light and aromatics. 
  • Throw in some music. Playing music even just lightly in the background will help to set the mood.
  • Share some food. Provide snacks or a meal. Let the moments linger, and don’t rush through anything. Round out a meal with dessert. Whether a piece of chocolate or some fresh fruit, it doesn’t have to be fancy or pretentious to encompass Hygge. Just bring people together with little moments. Your small efforts will make impressions.

Remember, Hygge isn’t just created with cozy furniture and furnishings. Hygge is created by your outlook, your moments and how you reflect that onto others. You are building yourself and anyone who walks in your home, a sanctuary and safe place to laugh and enjoy the precious, fleeting moments of life. Good luck, and Happy Hygge!

Thanks for reading.

We hope you enjoyed this piece. We’d love to hear your comments or questions. Share below or contact us at lifblog@lafvb.com.

Lafayette Interior Fashions is a family-owned company specializing in custom-crafted window treatments and interior fashions. We do blinds, shades, shutters, draperies, bedding and more. Custom-crafted in Lafayette, IN. Find a local dealer near you to shop our products. 

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