Hygge is the Danish art of togetherness – it is a way of life, a philosophy for happiness, and a design statement all rolled into one. It is about cosiness and family time, appreciating the little things and simple pleasures. No wonder Denmark is in the top five happiest countries in the world.
When you are part of a big family, those precious times playing cards, board games and reading are wonderful, and even better, they cost nothing. This winter, as the days get shorter, make the most of those dark evenings tucked up at home. Get everyone together and enjoy some quality time together, away from iPads and video games. Here are some great ways you can embrace Hygge in your home this winter.
Embrace natural firelight
Nothing says Hygge, like lighting some candles in your living room, and sitting in front of a warm fire reading some books. In Denmark, 28% of people light candles every day in their home (source: The Little Book of Hygge, Meik Wiking). Candles give your space an intimacy, and will bathe you in a warm glow – it is a very flattering light. Just make sure that you keep your candles safely away from the little ones. Ask your older children to reinforce the importance of this to the younger ones.
In the evenings, lighting a natural wood fire creates a great ambience, and it keeps you warm. You can tuck up together in your cosy home, protected from the outside cold. Using a wood fire can help you to save on your heating bills too – very important when you have a big family.
Cushions and blankets
Tactile, soft blankets and cushions are essential to the Hygge feeling of cosiness. Everyone in your family will love tucking underneath a large, furry blanket on a rainy Sunday to watch a movie. For your home choose organic colours and natural fabrics. Think of autumn golds, browns and dark oranges, to create cosiness. Don’t forget to put blankets in the bedrooms too – they are essential as the weather gets colder, and can help you get a great night’s sleep. Children will love it if they can each have a different blanket color, and they also make a great comforter for the little ones.
Your Hygge blankets can also be used to for some great family games that your children will love. Building a blanket fort is an fun game that can everyone will enjoy. Once you have built your fort, decorate it with fairy lights and cushions, and use it for a reading cave. They younger members of the family will particularly enjoy this.
Bring out the family books
Reading is one of life’s simple pleasures. As you are spending more time indoors during winter, bring out the books. Read alone in the armchair, and read stories to your children at bedtime. Encourage your children to read to each other. Books not only contain tales of the world around us and times past, but they also have a story of who we are. Think of the books that you have in your house – there may be books from your childhood, old books from your parents and grandparents, favourite stories to read aloud, and books that you bought whilst on holiday. Treasure these books and pass the tales of them onto others. They are family keepsakes for everyone to enjoy.
Bringing Hygge into your home this winter can help you forget about the cold weather outside. Instead make the most of together-time with your family, in your cosy, warm home.