Hygge has gained a lot of attention in recent times mainly as a marketing tool for selling candles, books, food etc but we want to tell you about Hygge without trying to sell you something at the same time. After all Hygge is a concept, a feeling that doesn't need any financial outlay what so ever to enjoy. That might seem overly honest coming from a gift company who want to sell you loads of comforting things for those long winter nights, but those things are extra comforts, they're not at the heart of Hygge.
So if Hygge isn't a material object, then what is it? Hygge is a Danish export and the Danes treat it almost like a national religion. It's in their DNA and life revolves around it implicitly. Bars, restaurants and cafes are frequented as much for their Hygge factor as they are for their spirits, food or coffee. Denmark like Ireland, has around 14 - 16 hours of darkness per 24 hours during the winter months and it's something that people usually dread with the arrival of Hallowe'en. However if you embrace this time of year, it can be a great time to do the things that you would perhaps feel bad doing on a long summer evening such as sitting inside with a good book.
As I mentioned earlier, some companies like to use Hygge to sell things and one of the things most attached to Hygge are Candles. When Danes are asked what they most associate with hygge, about 85% will mention candles! There's a very good reason for this. Correct lighting can transform a room from a starkly bright, lifeless area to somewhere that you just want to stay in all evening and never leave. Lighting is essential for Hygge and lamps and candles can provide an ambience light that leaves a room feeling extra cosy. Just remember to be careful!
Hygge is also about the company of friends, good conversation, a feeling of 'Cosiness' or being safe in your surroundings. This is probably at it's most prevalent in the winter when the wind and rain are lashing the windows and you're all gathered around a stove or an open fire. It's not however, exclusive to those horrible long winter nights. It's currently February and everyone is eagerly awaiting the arrival of Spring and Summer. Imagine a barbecue with friends and family on a long summer evening, in the woods, by the river, or simply in your back garden.
In today's world technology reigns supreme. Good chance you're reading this on a mobile device right now. Technology for all it's benefits, is also terrible for modern society and socializing. We all need to learn how to put the phone or tablet away, out of sight and out of mind. There's no point inviting friends round to have a laugh if you're going to spend most of the time on Facebook or Instagram. Don't go taking selfies to post to all the "Friends" telling them all what a great time you're having, you don't need to. All the important friends in your life are already with you. You also don't have to impress anyone by showing how good a time you're having, if they're your friend, then they already like you, you don't have to impress any more.
Because hygge is a feeling and not a material object, everyone will have their own favourite of making things extra hygge. There is no right and wrong, just try and keep it simple so you can totally relax and not let the world get in your way. Go ahead and light some candles, light the fire and make a cup of tea. Invite some close friends over and enjoy the company, the craic and most of all, the hygge!