Wednesday, January 18, 2017

To Hygge or Not to Hygee?

Last year, I was attracted to Nordic Noir TV Shows. Read about that here.

Well, that led to reading, researching, looking, talking about Scandinavia. And of course, with the election this past year and all the discussion about life in and moving to Denmark, Sweden and Norway (strange few people actually mention Finland, I must research) I found myself caught up in it all.

Is life really better?

One of the things I found very interesting is the Danish concept of hygge.
By definition is it the Scandinavian concept of getting cozy to create feelings of well being and contentment. Web pages and blogs are full of pictures of quiet contentment.

Warm coffee, a fire cheerfully burning, candles, a flower or two, warm wraps, pastries -- yes, lots of pastries, being outside with fresh air and sunshine. I can get into this.

What all of this reminded me of was a book I read years ago, Creating a Beautiful Home by Alexandra Stoddard.
The concept sounds wonderful and reassuring. An article in in the New Yorker called it bourgeois, Hummmm.....

"The most striking thing about hygge, though, might be how its proponents tend to take prosperity for granted. All the encouragements toward superior handicrafts and Scandinavian design, the accounts of daily fireside gatherings and freshly baked pastries assume a certain level of material wealth and an abundance of leisure time. As a life philosophy, hygge is unabashedly bourgeois, and American readers of a certain stripe will be familiar with its hallmark images—still-lifes of hands cradling a mug, candles lit at dusk on a picnic table, bikes with woven baskets and child safety seats leaning against a colorful brick wall. Artisanal this and homemade that, fetishizing what’s rustic as authentic, what’s simple as sophisticated: urban American sophisticates already know this aesthetic; we’ve aspired to it for a long time."

This may or may not be true, but I think with the lifestyle many of us have, we could all use a little hygge in our lives. So, in typical Pat Fashion, I have ordered a few books, bookmarked a few websites and plan how I might take some of these ideas and incorporate in my life.

My decorating style is not consistent with hygge. Minimalism is not my cup of tea or warm coffee by fire. However, I do think hygge can be useful even in a stuffed, antique filled Victorian home. We shall see.

For numerous ideas Pinterest is full of them. Just search hygge.
For book, just check Amazon.



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