From wooly throws and warm cups of tea to roaring fires and candles galore—the creators of Hygge Life reveal easy, affordable ways to turn your home into the ultimate cozy setting this holiday season.
As temperatures start to drop and the days grow shorter, there is no better time than winter to embrace hygge, the Danish philosophy of cozy living.
“One part of Danish culture I ended up loving was their ability to slow down and have these special moments,” says Alexandra Gove, who co-owns Hygge Life—the Avon, Colorado brick-and-mortar and e-tailer that celebrates the Danish philosophy.
After meeting her now-husband and business partner Koen van Renswoude, the duo moved to Amsterdam, van Renswoude’s hometown, and traveled throughout Europe for four years. It was in Amsterdam where Gove discovered gezellig, the Dutch version of hygge. Then, when the duo arrived in Denmark, Gove says, “That is where a light bulb went off.”
“I had to do something with this,” says Gove. “There is a word that captures what I love about these European cultures that we aren’t focusing on in the U.S.”
So, the two bought an old camper van and traveled Europe selling mini pancakes and textiles. They set up pop-up shops at markets and Gove started collecting vintage wool blankets and candle holders that evoked the feel of hygge as they started to develop the framework for what evolved into their own small business, Hygge Life.
After their European tour, the duo came back to Colorado two years ago and opened the shop in August 2017, which sells European, Scandinavian, and American wares that evoke the feeling of hygge.
Below, the creators of the home-accessories shop share their top tips on how to bring the cozy, comforting aesthetic of hygge into any home.
Let Your Home Reflect You
“Think about your space as your haven, filled with all the things you love,” says Gove. To create special moments, surround yourself with the furniture, decor, and people that make you happy. For example, if you love to read, create a cozy reading nook with a plush chair; or if you love to cook, outfit your kitchen with beautifully made utensils.
“It’s important that we have a place that caters to our lifestyle and what we love to do—and that creates those moments and feelings,” notes Gove.
Decorate With Nostalgia in Mind
You don’t have to spend a ton of money to make a happy home. Head to the flea market or a thrift store, and you’ll be surprised by the nostalgic treasures you might come across. “Or if there is something passed down to you that evokes emotion or a feeling—like china you can break out every once in a while, or a painting you can hang on the wall,” Gove says.
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