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Chicago winters can be downright bone chilling with the severe temperatures and wind chill, so this January might be the perfect time to add a little hygge to your home. What is hygge, you ask? Hygge is basically a concept created and practiced in Scandinavia, and it is the idea of embracing the feelings of coziness, comfort, and contentment. This Danish concept, pronounced “hoo-ga,” reminds you to embrace the simple pleasures in life like a smile from a neighbor, a hot cup of cocoa in front of the fire, or reading a good book while snuggled up with your pup. While there is no literal translation of the word, the feeling is universal and one which we strive for in our busy and stressful lives. Want to add a bit of hygge to your life? Let’s start by adding some elements to your home.
What Makes You Happy?
When striving for contentment, it’s important to slow down a bit and determine what makes you truly happy. It could be time spent with friends and family, enjoying a good meal, sleeping in on a Sunday, or reading the paper with a hot cup of coffee. Nine times out of ten, the things we truly enjoy in life are pretty simple and attainable if you take a moment away from your devices or work. Allow yourself those simple pleasures more frequently.
Surround Yourself with Calming Colors
Colors evoke emotions and studies have shown that if you’re surrounded by a calm and soothing color palette, you’re sure to feel a bit more Zen-like. When choosing a wall color, stick to more neutral tones such as creams or light greys, and if you want a bit more color in your life, choose soft blues or lavender. These more neutral color palettes encourage relaxation and calmness, which is perfect for you to achieve hygge.
Formal decor is the antithesis of hygge, so ditch the formalities and allow yourself comfort. Create a comfortable and welcoming space by adding comfortable pillows, soft blankets, or a plush rug to create an area that you can just sink into and relax. Arrange your furniture to create intimate conversation areas during gatherings, and utilize space to create a cozy window seat or reading corner. Remember, hygge is about relaxation and cozy contentment, so create spaces that reflect that.
Splurge on Bedding
Most people can agree that falling into bed at the end of a long day is one of the most relaxing feelings. Your bedroom should feel like a sanctuary and an escape from the craziness of the world, and it’s alright to allow yourself to enjoy an extra hour of sleep or an afternoon with a good book snuggled up on your down comforter. So splurge and buy yourself some nice bedding, add some pillows, a comforter, or a throw. Don’t forget to add some candles next to the bed for a cozy feel to truly make your bedroom a relaxing and comforting place.
Decorate with Memories
Our memories and traditions bring us comfort, so why not add items into your decor that have some meaning to you? Add some framed family photos, hang the painting you did during your summer vacation at the beach, or mix in that one great find from a garage sale you and your family discovered. The items in your home should hold some emotional value as well as tell your story.
We could all use a little more hygge in our life. Unplug and enjoy life's simple pleasures with these simple tips. What are some ideas you have to add hygge into your home?