Part 2: How to create a cosy home (Hygge)


Last week I wrote about the Danish concept of Hygge  (LINK to blogpost) — creating a welcoming, cosy home environment where those that enter feel embraced, a sense of belonging and togetherness.  We all want homes that are like this and whilst doing research into hygge I came across a blog that gave tips on how to create "hygge" in our homes which I thought I would share: (sourced from: "Decor8")




I love the ideas listed below and agree with them. I have written my own additional comments in red. What do you think - would these suggestions make your house and home more hygge — more cosy?

I think whatever we do in our homes, it should be done with love and care and for the right reasons — not to impress others who visit but to make our homes welcoming to whoever steps over the threshold.


1. Make interior design important to you and your family: This means considering what you have and decorate with intention and style. Not all Danish homes look like those you see in their magazines BUT they definitely are very aware of design and many families put a lot of care and attention into their home. It’s a source of pride. (however, we don't want to get to carried away with being overly proud of our homes as they quickly become idols


2. Don’t wing it or buy something just because it’s on sale:  Danes aren’t known to be wasteful. In fact, they tend to save up for that favorite design piece vs. running out and buying a knock-off or something they don’t really like just because it’s cheap. (I agree within this one — better have a few expensive items than a house packed full of things that won't last - or go down the path of second hand and really search for those things that add character to your home)


3. Instill a sense of respect in your children for the home and the things in it: While kids will always trash their rooms, contain their mess to their space. I noticed in Danish homes, kids don’t run the household. Parents still had stylish interiors and the kids are still kids. It’s all about letting them know early on that a home needs to be shown some respect. This carries well into their adult years, too. (I grew up in a home where my toys weren't allow to be all over the house, likewise, my own children weren't allow to take over the house either, meaning I could have visitors over and they didn't need to compete with toys and children — a home shouldn't be overrun with all things "children").



4. Always ask your guests, upon entering, if they want food or drink: To me, this is SO Danish. I can’t enter a Danish home without the second question after, “Hello How Are You?” being, “What can I get you to drink or eat, we have….” It’s a great way to show manners but is also caring and warm. This means to always keep a few bottles of wine or a favorite beverage in stock and something to munch on – so no empty refrigerators! I’m thinking to have a shelf in our closet that is reserved for guests – munchies, drinks, etc. (My pantry is always full so entertaining friends and family on short notice isn't too tricky and I think most of you are also have pantries full of food making this not so daunting)


5. Linger: Don't rush and try and hurry the visitors, take time to relax and unwind, have deeper conversations and enjoy the moment and make the visitors feel welcome and wanted and not an inconveniences . (couldn't agree more - we spend too much time rushing these days when we should stop and enjoy the company we have)


6. Enjoy what you have: Most people struggle with this concept — we always want more and we always want what others have.  A Hygge home is the greenest to the owner. Sure, they may love to have the latest kitchen or a newest sofa, but you better believe what they do have is cared for and they’re still entertaining family and friends whether the sofa is perfect or not. A sense of contentment is important. (this is a lesson many people could learn, too many try to compete with each other - envy of what others have)


7. Perfect is boring: Don’t invite friends over only when you’ve created an elaborate spread. A simple wooden bread board topped with cheeses, some olives, fresh bread, butter, a glass of wine… Or maybe a cake you’ve made that may not look amazing but it tastes great and took you only a few moments to make. Those kinds of gatherings are beautiful too. (this is a great motto for life - we don't need to be flashy and fancy, just be ourselves)



8. Sharing is caring:  Don’t just invite over your friends and let them sit there while you slave in the kitchen. A true Hygge home says YES when guests offer to help. Let them help with the salad prep. The cookie decorating. Setting the table. Community and sharing is something I always see when I hang out with my Danish friends. (it is nice when everyone joins in and helps, but too often visitors stand back and let the host run about — I like this idea)


9. Light candles and cozy up! Often the most inexpensive things can create a cozy space – like candles. Candles are always aglow in Danish homes the moment the sun goes down, especially in the winter. Even at cafes, you’ll see people sitting outside in late Fall all the way until March with candles on their tables, lap blankets and a cup of something warm. Candles on the balcony, the patio, on the windowsills, in the fireplace, on the table, they instantly create a mood. Natural daylight and candlelight are two of my favorite ways to light a home and both require little to no money which is even better. (I love the atmosphere that candles make and if not candles, lamps near chairs. I am not one for the bright lights in the evenings, at home we use lamps and it creates a much more cosy feel to any room. The other nice thing about candle is their scent and one can create a beautiful atmosphere in a  room by burning candles with different scents depending on the season)


10. Embrace who you are:  This is hard to do when you are constantly running back and forth and even at home, constantly tidying up or running after the kids and never really pausing. Embrace that you are only human and deserve to take time out each day just to have some tea, do yoga, read a chapter or two of a book, whatever works. This is very Hygge, and very Danish, to pause and sit inside of yourself for a moment, to let your soul catch up to your body as I’ve heard some say. (couldn't agree more)





Every wise woman buildeth her house: but the foolish plucketh it down with her hands.

(Proverbs 14:1)

Comments

  1. I especially agree with "Perfect is boring". I love when people visit my home and comment on how cozy it feels to them. That is what I was going for. Perfection, I have found does not feel cozy.

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    Replies
    1. I love the idea that perfect is boring - I have to agree - I love it when there is a mix-match of things in a house that shows the persons travels through life :))

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  2. Oh how fun! I love this!!!
    Hygge is such a great way of life!
    I haven't heard of this word. A BIG thank you for thinking and posting this for us.

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    Replies
    1. I am trying to live a life of hygge!! it sounds so nice and cosy :))

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  3. Just lovely (and cozy!)... love this concept Jo! :)

    Thanks for linking with the Art of Home-Making Mondays!

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  4. It's such a lovely and useful post, my dearest Jo, thank you for sharing it !
    With deep gratitude I wish you a most beatiful reamainder of you week, sweet Jo,
    sending blessings
    Dany

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  5. I do want a cozy home. I need to focus on what should go out instead of what should come in!
    Please drop by and say hello!
    ஐღLauraღஐ
    Harvest Lane Cottage

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    Replies
    1. I love the idea that a home doesn't need to be perfect to be inviting and cosy :))

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  6. These are really good tips. Some of these things don't seem quite so practical to me - candles everywhere, for example... Also, because my family is very hobby-oriented, our home is full of hobbies and activities all the time, so interior decorating is a bit complicated. But, it is "home" and I think each of us feels that it is very cosy. Not so sure if our visitors agree though!!

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    Replies
    1. I have to be careful with candles with a cat as she likes to put her paw near the flame (or her nose!!!) and I get concerned about her knocking them over.

      As long as you are happy and cosy, then that is what is important!!

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