A time for hygge March 1, 2017 – Posted in: General, Unique Collections – Tags: , ,

Cultural upheavels are born in times of uncertainty, like Romanticism during the French Revolution and the response to the Vietnam war was the 1960s countercultural movement. Modern day’s collective anxiety around politics in the world have spurred the cultural zeitgeist of hygge – which happens to be very hazy on specifics but all about cozy.

With the unknown, we crave closeness, security and safety, so the centuries-old Danish concept of simplicity and snuggly comfort is having an international renaissance, hygge (pronounced “hoo-guh”) is the next best way to live.

Author of The Book of Hygge, Louisa Thomsen Brits, defines it as “an experience of relatedness, of belonging to the moment and to each other. It’s a feeling of being warm, safe, comforted and sheltered. It’s that feeling of well-being and contentment.”

Hygge is intangible — a feeling, an atmosphere. You can feel it when it’s there, but it’s very difficult to stage” concurs Copenhagen design studio founder, Tina Seidenfaden Busch.

Putting the phenomenon this way, Brits says: “The secret to hygge lies in asking ourselves where we feel most at home, who makes us feel at ease, what are the things we do that anchor us, what contributes to our sense of well-being, where do we turn for comfort?” Without even realizing it, we all hygge, whether it’s “beside a fire on a dark night, around a table for a shared meal, alone in bed with a good book or with a coffee in our local café.” However, Brits reminds us that “like anything of value, it takes some effort. You can’t warm yourself beside a fire unless you’ve chopped wood first.”

From a décor perspective all types of lamps, glass and dimmers to lighting fixtures can “adjust the lighting to the situation.” Thick rugs, textured throws and upholstered pieces instantly create coziness. Wall hangings and tapestries instantly add warmth and texture, by hygge is honestly more about the feeling you get when you walk into a room. It is in the heart – and eye – of the beholder.

Brits reminds us that it’s often “how we console and make ourselves at home wherever we are, in the flux and flow of our busy, sometimes challenging, lives” that’s the most hygge thing to do. She says “the times when I became more aware of the value of hygge was when I found myself in need of comfort — when I have been far from home, lonely or exhausted.”

Here is Louisa Thomsen Brits’s 10 Tips For the Hygge Novice

  • Slow down.
  • Put distractions and cares aside.
  • Frame a moment by defining its boundaries.
  • Make a circle of warmth — light a candle, dim the lights, pull chairs together, adjust your surroundings to guide your energy and desires.
  • Establish a point of focus, whether it’s a cup of tea, a conversation, a shared meal, opened book or a bottle of wine.
  • Come to your senses and think about how we are touched by everything around us.
  • Feel the contrast between this brief, restorative pause and everything that exists on its periphery.
  • Pay attention to the particulars of the moment.
  • Acknowledge that the moment will pass.
  • Celebrate.

Here at Ziora we’re all for celebrating a moment, in the moment, cozily in comfort.


(Images courtesy of Hygge & West and MyDomaine.com)