Hygge is like being wrapped in the warm embrace of a cinnamon bun. It’s everything that is cozy, comforting and familiar about your home. But what does it have to do with interior design? Bringing hygge design into your home is about favoring quality surfaces, interesting textiles, and designing for a home of understated luxury. Read on to find out how you can bring Scandi coziness into your home this fall…
1. Hygge is more than just a word, it’s an attitude
So what exactly is hygge? Here’s the official Danish explanation of this Scandi word that has us all melting. (And it’s not just the Danes; the word ‘cozy’ may actually come from the Norwegian for cozy, ‘koselig’).
Basically, hygge is about creating an atmosphere of relaxed coziness.
- Hygge isn’t just about making things look homey, it’s about quality design and textures.
- Hygge design is ethical and close to nature.
- Hygge interiors are streamlined, yet they don’t feel barren or sparse –everything has its rightful place.
- Design rooms to be functional, yet warm. Don’t overload space with unnecessary trinkets and opt for a streamlined Scandi look.
2. Play with light
Scandinavian interior plays with light by maximizing daylight hours in fall and winter. Soft, blush colors and plenty of natural light and lighting make for spaces that feel both airy and welcoming. You don’t need shadowy clutter to be cozy.
- Vary where light is coming from, and use interesting shapes and lamp holders. Go for statement and feature lamps over boring bulbs. Have lighting on all levels.
- Don’t use heavy curtains and maximize daylight with mirrors.
- Pale colors reflect light better so use them to make rooms feel bigger.
- Favor pale wood flooring and neutral wall colors over darkwood and heavy patterns.
3. See the beautiful in the everyday
Hygge design is subtle and delicate, not loud and OTT. Scandi design is renowned for its functional and simple shapes (read more about their design ethos here).
Invest in making everyday objects beautiful and opt for quality. Look for clean and classic lines and shapes in furniture, not fussy frills.
- Go for minimalist shapes. Some of the most famous Scandi designs are simple wooden chairs.
- Dial down clutter. Clutter will make you feel stressed, not hygge.
4. Use wood everywhere you can
Wood isn’t just for tables and chairs! Wood can be used to make adorable candleholders, trinket boxes, and even butter knives.
For Scandi natives, wood is a no-brainer. It grows everywhere and all their trees produce lovely color grains and textures. Wood has a calming influence in a home.
- Mix wood with glass and ceramics.
- Look for different shades of wood, favoring paler and lighter grains.
- Feature wood in wall art too.
Make sure your wood is ethically sourced (look for FSC certifications).
5. Upcycle vintage fabrics
Being ethical and stylish in one fell swoop? Awesome! Ultimate hygge.
If you’re feeling adventurous, head to your local flea market and pick up some vintage fabric to cover a chair or make a textile collage.
- Vintage textile can get frail, so approach with care. Go for thicker materials.
- Not sure where to find quality produce? Start flea market scouting here and speak to vendors who’ve been in the game for a while.
- Not feeling quite so crafty? There are plenty of imitation retro fabrics you can go for instead.
6. Bring the outdoors in
Hygge doesn’t stop at your own front door. Nature-lovers at heart, Scandi natives love their homes to remind them of the outside. Whether that’s in the wood, color scheme or earthy and natural textures; Scandi design is close to nature.
- Use natural themes and motifs in wall art.
- For your overall color scheme, go for natural colors.
- Have plenty of plants dotted around the place.
7. Have fun with prints
Scandi natives also have an eccentric streak mixed in with their functional minimalism. As a nod to their Viking heritage, they like strong patterns in their textiles.
They also use these strong prints as accents to counterbalance more neutral interior backgrounds,
- Pile up the cushions on your plain sofas for extra hygge points.
- Frame prints and use them to brighten up the sparse walls.
Feeling hygge yet? What makes you feel cozy at home?