Over the years, Texas has earned the reputation of being friendly. In fact, the state gets its name from the Tejas Indians, meaning friends. Well across the other side of the world, Denmark also has a reputation for being a very happy nation. They are nominated year after year as the happiest people on earth. Many contribute this happiness to the Danish philosophy of hygge (pronounced “hyoo guh”). There is no simple translation of the word, but instead it conveys a feeling of cozy, comfort, and contentment. Some believe that the word originates from the Danish word hugga, which means to embrace or comfort. Therefore, it is a natural step for friendly Texans to embrace the concept of hygge in their homes and lives.
We probably wish photos of our homes could grace magazines. Many times the decor is lovely; however, the photographs are cold and uninviting. Hygge design will impart the coziness and warmth into your decor making people want to stay, put their feet up, and enjoy the ambience. Your home will invite people to live and enjoy themselves. They say hygge is a state of mind that focuses on our senses. Let’s look at three easy ways to incorporate hygge into your home by focusing on sight, smell, and touch.
Lighting is a great way to make our homes feel cozy and warm. Layering light sources is a hygge secret. Therefore, do not rely on bright overhead lighting. Instead use lamps that shine with warm light like soft white bulbs. Lighting candles can also add a warm glow to your room. During the colder months of the year, light a fire to cast a warm glow into your living area. Incorporate fairy lights or string lights into your design. Perhaps this explains why Christmas time creates such fond family memories with the combination of the lights from the tree and a beautiful fire crackling and dancing in the fireplace. It appeals to our sense of sight.
In the movie, Leap Year, Amy Adams plays the part of a home stager. She instructs a home owner to bake some cookies just before the open house begins and promises that he will have offers on the property that day. Our sense of smell plays a role in whether we want to be somewhere or not. Baking cookies or bread, lighting scented candles, diffusing essential oils are all examples of making our homes hygge. You probably have done things like this for years instinctively without knowing it was part of a hygge philosophy.
Being mindful of texture when designing your room decor helps appeal to one’s sense of touch. In hygge, textures change as the season do. For example, you would not layout a heavy, knitted blanket over your couch for people to snuggle under in the heat of the summer. However, it would feel luxurious and cozy during the winter months. Since we are in the fall and looking forward to winter, break out the soft throw pillows, warm blankets, and make your living area cozy.
There are obviously other ways to incorporate hygge style into your home as there are other senses that we have not addressed. If you are interested in reading more about the hygge philosophy, Lake Homes Realty has an article specifically for lake homes. In addition I enjoyed the article by Decorilla; it has great tips. We all want to be hospitable and friendly to our family and guests. In Texas, we know how to show Southern hospitality and friendliness, therefore, intentionally adding some hygge to our home decor will take our hospitality to another level. Embrace the concept of hygge and your family and guests will see, smell, and feel the love.