After reading The Art of Hygge by Jonny Jackson and Elias Larsen before YouTubing how to pronounce “hygge” (“hoo-gah”) to confirm my pronunciation, I consider myself a fully-qualified expert- with letters after my name and everything. We’ve all heard how Denmark breathes happiness; their lifestyle being one of a kind. It is often thought that hygge is partly responsible for this. Hygge describes feeling “cosy” and “comfortable,” and although these qualities are ones us silly British people ascribe solely to winter, it is more than applicable to my favourite season of them all- summer! This glorious book opened my eyes to those little things in life that make us content and happy that can most certainly be applied over the next few months.
As soon as the first layer of winter frost hugs the cars in the streets, I bring out my candles, finding comfort in their yellow flicker many of us see as only compatible with cold evenings. Yet candles are essential to hygge; they create an “inviting atmosphere.” While I wouldn’t normally pick out my favourite candle excitedly like a kid in a sweet shop (or me in a sweet shop) on a summer’s evening, I did just that last week. And holy moly, we should not deprive ourselves of candles during the summertime.
This brilliant book showed me that there are so many hyggelig ideas I am already incorporating into my life that have been a particularly welcome feature of my summers. Wanting to incorporate the Danish way as much as possible, I will be using this little book as a guidebook for a wonderfully happy summer. Here are a few ways I’ve already been letting cosy into my summers:
- Natural lighting is “essential to our happiness,” and while I cheer at the sight of natural lighting during the winter (it’s a necessity when my Instagram theme matches the dull sky outside), summer’s frequent giving of natural light during our warmer months ensures I am hygge’s number one fan all year round.
- Fresh air and the outside can sprinkle hygge into our lives in abundance. A Danish proverb insists “fresh air keeps the doctor poor” and, like so many of us, I itch to be outside for as many hours as possible in the summer months. Grey sky or picture-perfect blue, I am not one to suffer inside!
- S’mores are my new favourite thing. Just a few weeks ago I had my first s’more (I’m very late to the party), and with it’s gooey centre and warm and crunchy hug protecting it, I can confirm that’s one cosy summer necessity.
Now feeling a bit too big for my flip flops, I believe a few things I adore to do in the summertime encourage the feeling of hygge:
- Making homemade lemonade (on a Sunday- for extra hygge points).
- Slipping on wellington boots and splashing in summer’s tears.
- Having a BBQ on the beach.
The Art of Hygge is not only the perfect gift and coffee table book, it is simply a brilliant reminder of the warmth the simple things can provide us with when Britain is being Britain, and raining its way all the way through June, July and August. It’s actually the kind of book I adore delving into in order to feel cosy; to experience hygge itself. A Friday evening was spent, wrapped up in a blanket, a candle flickering in my peripheral vision while I fell for this book’s magical words and soothing design. I’m a sucker for cosy-looking pictures and this book delivers these beautifully. With ideas to further explain the notion of hygge, recipes to help us hygge up and little DIY tricks to make our every day feel that bit more cosy, it’s a book we all need to help us when we get swept up in the hustle and bustle of Monday to Sunday.
I can’t wait to dip in and out of The Art of Hygge, taking its advice and following its oh-so-hygge recipes. Do you need to smother your life with hygge? Do you already? Let me know!
~ Kat ~