Here are some of my top tips for creating the Hygge feel in your own home:
Hygge can be most successfully recreated by using natural materials such as wood, leather and furs. It’s about creating cosy little nooks and corners in which to relax and re-charge in rooms around your home.
Accessorise with natural textures
Add plenty of textured accessories, such as woven rugs, sheepskin throws and earthy ceramics. Bringing together different textures and finishes will help you to build up layers of comfort in the room. Instead of cluttering your couch with cushions, choose to use three or four. By keeping things simple, you’ll really let the soul of your home shine through.
Keep it neutral
Chalky colours reflect the origin of the materials they’re used with and homes are often an eclectic mix of new and reclaimed items. Paint walls a soft shade of grey, white or cream and keep colours throughout the house earthy to create a sense of calm.
Warm up with wood
Functionality reigns supreme in Scandinavian style. When it comes to choosing furniture, look for pieces that marry simple lines with sensual curves. Use organic natural-stained wood like birch, maple or pine and choose natural fabrics, such as cotton and linen, to create a cosy, lived-in look.
Stock up on candles
Start building a collection of scented candles. Lots of them. The Danish are the biggest consumers of candles in Europe and there is nothing more enticing to people than flattering lighting and a lovely smell. When I am hosting I always have a great candle burning. My favourite is the ‘Flamant Ambre’ candle, as it transcends all seasons. However, as winter hits I move onto ‘True Grace Sacristy’, which never fails to receive many compliments.
Let there be light
The Danish are fanatical about getting the lighting right and you would be too if your country had such short daylight hours. Endlessly flattering, soft light is the epitome of Hygge. I layer light to enhance key areas, artwork, architectural features and colours to produce a really welcoming environment. Keep overhead lights nice and low and have a few well-placed lamps on. Use low-wattage bulbs for flattering, warm pools of light at low level. You might like to place lamps with soft shades on side tables, hang a sculptural pendant light over your dining table or position a reading light by an armchair to create a cosy corner. Clusters of fairy lights can also be used to bring a glow to corners and areas you want to highlight.
Surround yourself with things that are special to you; photos, souvenirs, ceramics or glassware – anything that makes you feel happy and reflects your personality and passions. Bring more plants into the home too. Clusters of greenery bring the outside in, even on the dullest day and research has shown that the presence of plants in the home leads to reduced stress and anxiety and increases feelings of calm and well-being.
Guest contribution by Anne Haimes, Interior Designer, Anne Haimes Interiors based in Henley-on-Thames