It’s the word of the moment – hygge.
That indefinable Nordic comfort-ethic, part of the Scandinavian soul – the great love of cosiness and comfort in warm, candlelit surroundings.
That is the essence of hygge and it can easily be transposed to wherever you are. You just need the will and a few basic ingredients.
Light those candles
You can have hygge without candles, of course, but if you’re looking to up your HQ (hygge quotient), then a good way to start is by arranging chunky candles in groups of three or four in prominent places – window sills, tables – and sparking them up.
Big communal bowls of food
Hygge food isn’t fancy little nibbles and amuse-bouches, it’s a big pot of steaming stew, plonked on the table with a ladle in, waiting to be spooned out and demolished by the ravening crowd. Then comes the ice cream, or the cake, or the ice cream and cake, followed by hot chocolate and wine.
Wrap up warm
When your grandmother insisted that you put on a vest to go out and play with your friends, she was doing mobile-hygge. This principle stems from original hygge, which involves lots of rugs, woollens, throws and sheepskins. Draped anywhere, these accoutrements are on hand to make even the coldest corner, floor or set of shoulders feel warm and snug.
Phone a friend (or several)
You can do hygge, or be hygge, on your own – a bowl of sweets, a box-set and a blanket is all you need – but it’s better when it’s done in company. Specifically, the kind of company that doesn’t need anyone to fill in awkward silences because there aren’t any! Hygge is mainly found among family and old friends, but there’s nothing better than cultivating it among newer chums – bring them into the fold; make hygge huger!
Photo Credit: Coco Lapine – see her range of prints here: http://ow.ly/GJ5K30cpLq5