(Photo Credit: Jumping Rocks Photography)
You’ve probably heard of hygge by now. It’s a Danish word that loosely translates to coziness and contentment — two things we’re all wishing for this winter. It’s a concept that’s become very popular in interior design. Intuitively I think, we all long for comfort as the days become darker and colder.
As renowned architect and bestselling author William Hirsch says in his book, “The Well-Centered Home,” your home should be “the place that recharges your emotional batteries. It should provide psychological security and protect you from the onslaught of everyday life.” I believe this and I live by this. This is why I do what I do. Our homes are our shelter, both physical and emotional.
Interior design isn’t just about how it looks, but how it makes one feel. The hygge philosophy can help achieve a sense of calm, comfort and contentment.
These are some of the hygge elements of design that I use to create a warm and inviting, yet uplifting and soothing environment in my home during these dreary winter months (OK all of you California peeps, you might not get this and I'm so jealous).
(Photo Credit: Colonial Concepts)
This is a subtle change with big impact — change your light bulbs. In the winter, pink-hued bulbs with a temperature somewhere between 2700K and 3000K will make a huge difference. From the outside, your home will look warm and inviting. From the inside, you'll look great! There's nothing more flattering than pink light on your skin. Aside from that little bonus, you'll also feel cozier and warmer.
Every autumn I wash every window and remove the screens. The physical act of both fills me with joy and with each window my home gets brighter and brighter. Removing the screens allows 30 to 40 percent more light into your home.
(Photo Credit: Decorator's Notebook)
If you don’t have a fireplace to warm your hearth, gather several candles on a table together to create an inviting glow. If you have environmental sensitivities, use battery-operated candles, they're amazingly cozy.
For me, there is amazing delight in the sight of snow falling against the light of the moon (or a streetlight if you have an urban life as I do). If you need privacy, install top down, bottom up shades. You'll maintain your privacy and still have the joy of watching fierce weather while you're tucked in and warm.
(Photo credit blinds.com)
I've said this before — I don't know how anyone lives without a bathtub in the winter. If you have one, switch to heavy scents like sandalwood and cloves for your bathwater. Bring candles into the bathroom and be sure to hang eucalyptus from the shower so the steam can release that good, healing fragrance into the air.
(Photo Credit: Freepik.com)
Lastly, for all of the alcohol drinkers (and for those making it through these extraordinary times without drinking, I applaud you although I'm not one of you) — make glogg. Even if you don't drink it, smell it. It will put you in the holiday spirit.
Here’s my recipe:
Boil cloves, cardamon, cinnamon stick and orange peel in a couple of cups of water with some brown sugar until your whole house smells good. Add 2/3 port to 1/3 vodka (do not boil). Keep it warm and sip away as needed.
Hang in there, folks. Life can be hard. Let's make it pretty.