January and February are both such limbo months. The excitement of ‘new year, new me’ starts to wear off and although the post-christmas belly is starting to shift (nowhere), there’s still no summer holidays in sight.
It’s cold. It’s so cold that you can’t even remember the last time you didn’t have to trudge outside in a dressing gown to turn the heaters up to full blast and wait for your poor car to defrost.
The nights are still painfully long and you’re lacking in all sun-related minerals.
So, to combat this general feeling of sluggishness I have decided to embrace the cold and the dark and devote my life to being a complete blanket baby.
In a bid to prevent myself from drowning in soppy romantic novels on last year’s holiday to Marbella I bought this book; ‘The Little Book Of Hygge’ (pronounced Hoo-Gah). I turned my attention to it after a very strong pina colada with my bestest of gal pals and a long stint of absolutely dripping on a sunbed. The combination of near heatstroke and slight intoxication meant that I ended up almost finishing the book in one sitting. Or lounging. It was very luxe.
Hygge is essentially a Danish way of life. The idea of ‘hygge’ seems to be deeply rooted in the Danish identity and culture. According to the author Meik Wiking, the word roughly translates into ‘the art of creating intimacy and cosy togetherness’. Now this, this is something I can relate to.
Reading this book was on par to receiving the biggest of bear hugs. Although in reality I was melting in the Spanish heat, I was transported to a cosy January evening, wrapped in endless layers of fabric with a huge mug of tea and the fire crackling away; absolute bliss.
Well now we are in January and do you know what, I haven’t been feeling that cosy vibe recently. Mainly due to our boiler breaking and being plunged into arctic temperatures INDOORS. So not okay. I decided I needed to focus more on making sure that my surroundings were as comforting and blissful as possible. So back to the book I went.
It’s so simple and easy to transform your environment into one that is inviting and soothing and warms the cockles of your heart, even on the dreariest, greyest days. The focal point of ‘Hygge’ is comfort and general wellbeing.
So here are a few steps on creating a ‘Hygglige’ evening.
- Get the candles out. Candles create a sense of serenity and are calming and warming even when it’s cold outside.
- Find the pillows. All the pillows. Create a fort, become emperor of the fort. Plump the pillows and sink in.
- Rugs and blankets are your friends. The snugglier, the better. My ‘hyggelig’ escape is my bed. Yours could be a comfy chair or a pile of blankets and pillows in a corner on the floor.
- It’s all about the lighting. According to ‘The Little Book of Hygge’, celling lights are a gift from the devil. They are harsh and cold and uninviting; something my mum, they queen of fairy lights, has been telling me for years. Instead, emphasis is made on the use of mood lighting, soft lights and fireplaces to transform a cold room into a warm, hyggelige area.
You can ‘hygge’ on your own and with friends. The most important thing is creating the atmosphere. Sitting on your own with a cup of tea, James Bay playing and a good book is just as hygge as being surrounded by good company and good conversation and a pizza.
So happy hygge-ing. I hope that this practice transforms the winter months for you, and allows you to appreciate the smaller and warmer things in life.
You can get your hands on a copy of The Little Book of Hygge here
Photos taken, again by my very patient boyfriend. Big love.