Get the Look: A Hygge-Inspired Home
Get ready, get set, get cozy.
Scandinavians know how to kick back and relax. So much so, they have a phrase for it: Hygge—a state of mind and decor trend that welcomes everything wellness, comfort, and contentment. (It’s pronounced hue-gah by the way. Don’t worry, we had to ask too.) Max Humphrey, one of our favorite designers based out of Portland, Oregon, filled us in on how to bring hygge to your home.
Pile On the Cozy
You can never have too many textiles in a hygge-fied home. Layer the bed, sofa, and accent chairs with throw pillows and blankets made of brushed cotton, faux fur, sherpa, flannel, and anything else that evokes the same comfort and coziness of your favorite fall sweater. And it doesn’t have to stop with home decor—invest in a plush robe and fur-lined slippers to change into as soon as you walk through the door.
Shy Away from Color
Avoid bold colors, so as not to overwhelm the peaceful setting. A less distracting (yet equally stylish!) neutral palette of grays, whites, creams, and warm, darker tones helps settle the mind, encouraging the notion of rest and relaxation. To add visual interest, try mixing up patterns and textures instead. Flannel wool blankets; handwoven rugs made of hearty, natural fibers; and lightly distressed wood furniture amp things up while still keeping in line with the hygge aesthetic.
Set the Mood
The Danes can’t stress candles enough. In fact, they burn more candles per capita than any other nation on the continent. And we can’t blame them! The warm, soft glow of a candle lends a much cozier ambience than harsh overhead lighting. Use them generously on the mantel, bedside table, and console; on their own; atop a pedestal; or nested inside a glass hurricane. Flameless candles are a great alternative if you’re worried about fire hazards or dripping wax. If you do choose to go the traditional route, steer clear of flowery scents, and don’t forget to blow them out before bed!
Less Is More
Scandinavian decor is all about clean lines, sleek and simple furniture, and keeping surfaces free of clutter. The hygge variation follows the same protocol. Stay organized with built-in shelving units and bookcases, and fill out spaces with large sofas and sectionals. Woven bins and storage ottomans are useful for keeping extra blankets and pillows tidy and out of sight.
Relax and Unplug
Hygge takes it back to simpler times, before humanity became fascinated by phones, televisions, and tablets. Embrace the present and company of friends by trading in technology for cozy vignettes instead. Think benches flanking beds or windows, lofty floor pillows, and club chairs and sofas arranged to face one another. A fully stocked bookcase will also do the trick, especially if you’re looking for some alone time. Oh, and don’t forget the wine. Nothing makes you feel warm and fuzzy inside like wine.