Hygge Like a Dane
Our founder Kirsten gives us a deeply-rooted dive into the Scandinavian way of life that gets us through dark times.
A quality of coziness and comfortable conviviality that engenders a feeling of contentment or well-being (regarded as a defining characteristic of Danish culture).
Danish author Hans Christian Andersen once said “The whole world is a series of miracles, but we're so used to them we call them ordinary things.” And this perfectly sums up the magic ofhygge.
Hygge was perfected by the Danes to get them through the Scandinavian cold dark winters by bringing light and beauty into their homes and into their hearts. It subtly underpins Danish culture—it's not a trend or a catchphrase. The entire nation embraceshyggeas a way to bring meaning to everyday moments, taking them from ho-hum to beautiful.
“Now, more than ever, it’s really important to cultivate lightness in your life, especially during challenging times. Touches like flowers on the table, lit candles in the evening, or a cozy throw may seem insignificant, but they make such a difference to your quality of life.”
Below, Kirsten and five of her friends from Copenhagen share with us how they plan to live their besthyggemoments this winter.
“In Denmark we love hjemlig hygge—hygge at home. Inviting friends over for a home cooked meal is to me very special. My home is my creative space and personal universe, so inviting friends inside is like inviting them into my soul. The special atmosphere creates the best setting for deep conversations and loud laughs as being present is at the centre. All you need to do is just be and enjoy. Your focus is entirely on the company. That is hygge to me.”
Birgitte Raben Olrik, Designer
“Hygge is about having a meaningful time with the ones you love. Making snobrød (bread on a stick) over a bonfire on a cold winter day, lots of candlelight, toasty fireplaces, a fun dinner with friends cooking together and hanging out. But above all, this is the most hyggelig I can think of—my three fave people all cuddled up in bed on a Sunday morning.”
Ditte Isager, Photographer
“Night rides through the forest on my horse Trix is the optimal hygge experience for me. It’s when I feel most present and alive.”
Jette Jørs, Photographer
“This is one of our favourite corners in our apartment. It's a simple daybed that I built, nicely tucked up against the window with the most gorgeous daylight. It's the scene of many cozy early mornings, late afternoons and lazy evenings. All you need is some soft pillows, warm blankets and great company….and you’re good to go!”
Christian Larsen, Photographer
“Hygge for me is a sentiment of being present, whether I’m by myself or with those I love. Nothing gets me more in the mood than surrounding myself with lots of candles.”
Kirsten Kjaer Weis, Founder
Top Photo Jette Jørs, Photographer
Photographs courtesy of contributors