17 February 2017
There is a Danish word, hygge, that is making its way around the world as if it is some newfound discovery. It is not new, but deeply embedded in their culture. Pronounced hoo-ga, this concept is not easily summed up in one word, as the Danes have, but in several words/atmospheres in English: cosy, warm, inviting, rustic, soothing, indulgent, gentle, taking pleasure, slowing down, community.
During the darkest and coldest months, the people of Denmark seek out the hygge in all moments, to contrast the stark and dreary landscapes. They create for themselves atmospheres that promote good conversion, comfort, and meaningful time together. The more rustic, the better. The more cosy, the better.
It is about adding a candle to the table for dinner, sharing a meal of good food with those you care about, curling up on the sofa with a cup of tea, a blanket, and a book. It is the process of making a simple meal. It is the most simple, enjoyable, lovely things. In frequency these things should be, in my mind, with the necessity of enjoying them with others. It is more enjoyable to do things like devour delicious tacos together, and have long conversations over a pot of steaming tea.
It is the atmosphere of openness and the sense of a safe place where we are cared for. Where your opinion and thoughts matter. A sanctuary of cosiness.
Hygge is (compacted in one word) all the aspects that I have tried to embody in my home and in my every day for as long as I have have my own home. It is fun to put a Danish word to it now.