My husband is Danish, and so I was delighted to delve into the “Danish” conscious living strategy that is simple, easy to obtain, and life enhancing on many levels. Hygge (hue-guh or hoo-ga) is the art of Intimacy, where setting a template for conscious coziness creates a feeling of well-being and satisfaction in our lives.

The Danish lifestyle of Hygge utilizes a balanced arrangement of natural elements, textures, visual embrace, and lighting to set the stage for space that brings us coziness, security, nurturing, balance and comfort. Hygge may hold some essences of zen, minimalism, and feng shui, yet it is the “call to action” or “call to cozy” that makes Hygge a living lifestyle.

The word hygge originated in old Norway, where it meant “well-being”. It was soon adapted by Denmark, where hygge is applied everywhere, inside and out: from intimate dinners, to joyful gatherings. Create a warm atmosphere, enjoy the present, make it warm and cozy and you are having a hygge experience. Your happy place will be your hygge place. You will feel a sense of contentment, inner peace, and happiness.

Getting Happy with HYGEE - The Art of Intimacy

During the last few years with Covid-19 and high stress, our homes have become our havens and sanctuary. Applying some Hygge design strategy can fine tune your home to another level of purpose, self-awareness and intentional coziness. In Danish culture, it was necessary to survive the many long, cold and dark days. Hygge was a way to survive boredom and replace it with conscious hygge strategies such as sharing a cup of coffee or a candle lighting ritual.

Creating a Hygge Home

With coziness as our goal, here are some design recommendations to invite Hygge into your life.

Reduce and Minimize Clutter:

Although Hygge is not a minimalist or sterile design strategy, a clean uncluttered home allows the mind to clear – a true stress reducer. It also allows very specific intentional objects to “shine” as they are placed to create an intimate area or uplifting statement.

Decorate with purpose: 

Fill you home with objects you love; hygge is about bringing in some nostalgia and memories to invoke warmth and joy. Just create consciously and if you are applying feng shui principles into your hygge home, then you will want to place your candles and reading nooks in very specific locations.

Choose Neutral Colors:

Choose warm, neutral wall colors. Both Benjamin Moore and Sherwin Williams offer a Hygge color palette. Some of the popular Benjamin Moore Hygee recommendations include these colors: 
Cotton Balls OC-122; Fog Mist OC-31; Thundercloud Gray 2124-40; Angelica AF-665; Silver Fox 2108-50 and Silhouette AF-655.

Textiles: Comfort and Layers

Soft, warm, cozy fabrics create comfort. Think lots of layers, so adding some faux fur or soft rugs with comfortable throws and blankets create an instant invitation to relax. Choose quality bedding. Both feng shui and hygge would agree with some creamy neutrals in the bedroom with some pops of color.

Candles – #1 Hygge Strategy
Candles are rated the number 1 Hygge strategy. The element of fire is not only light, but also transformation. Well placed candles can create a cozy nook, an intimate dinner table, or a special ceremony.

Essential Oils:

Utilize the soft natural scent of essential oils to center and calm the space, as well as bring in some outdoor scents such as pine and cedar. Tangerine and Orange lift spirits and heal grief and may be very helpful in dark moments. Clove repels negativity and is not a Danish remedy, but one that connects to my Greek lineage. So, my personal Hygge routine involves diffusing Cloves in my home.


Salt Crystal Lights, Mood Lighting
In Denmark, darkness comes quickly, so the art of lighting will extend the daylight hours. Avoid any light-blocking window treatments and choose sheer white curtains as an option. Lighting can be many forms, such as mood lighting, pendant lighting, task lighting and salt crystal lamps.


Truly a hygge highlight, the fireplace creates a place to relax and warm the body and soul. If the fireplace is not lit, then add some candles and create a fire.

Couches, Cushions, Chairs & Nooks:

As you arrange your couches and chairs, let each area be an invitation for
conversation, reading, relaxing. A quiet dark corner can be a wonderful reading nook, or meditation area. Add soft warm touches with pillows, and soft throws and blankets.

Hand-Crafted and Vintage Table Touches

Whether it’s a beautifully hand-crafted pottery coffee mug, or Grandmother’s wine glasses, these pieces naturally add hygge to your routine. My daughter treasures the Danish “Buttercup” Dinnerware that was passed down to her from her Great Grandmother Eva, who was in the Royal Ballet in Copenhagen. The set is valuable in lineage and family pride. Find your special pieces and incorporate them. Begin your own tradition.

Give Techno a Break:

Although technology has been helpful in keeping us connected virtually, the essence of Hygge is to find connection in real time. A quiet book, candle meditation, coffee with a friend, or an intimate dinner party – honor the connection with humanity. It is a vertical connection – grounded to the earth and uplifted to the universe. Keep at least one or two rooms free from technology, ideally one of these rooms is the bedroom.

Hygge Activities

Where do I begin?

Well, I am sure that you are already steeped in Hygee routines, you just may not be aware of them. Bringing awareness and gratitude to your simple routines and rituals instantly uplifts the results.

Create and enjoy simple rituals. Your daily life is rich with moments and opportunities.

Have a cup of coffee each morning with your favorite coffee mug.
I still have my very special mug from a dear friend Sandy that was from the Mottisfont Rose garden in the UK. Just holding this in my hands and enjoying that sip of coffee brings back connection and warm memories.

Light a special candle every day or evening. It can be part of an altar, or in the gathering room at home. Candles instantly bring a sense of focus and peace into a space.

 Set up a small gathering to connect with a few friends.

Visit a sacred space – perhaps a garden or church or a visit to the seaside.

Hygge is all about creating high vibration bubbles of positive energy, and surrounding ourselves in these moments. Live in the present with full presence and consciousness. Truly the essence of conscious design!

How do I know when I Hygge?

Ask yourself: Do I feel these feelings?




Safe and Protected




Nostalgic – Warm Memories

Enjoy this beautiful Danish lifestyle that brings us into reconnecting with ourselves and each other in the present time. Connection is the key word and it is through connection with ourselves and others in the present moment that heals and nurtures us. Enjoy life’s gifts, create moments, and get on with some Hygge! This is truly Conscious Design at it’s finest.

Renae Jensen is a Feng Shui Master, Intentional Interior Re-Designer, and founder of
Design Harmony and the Conscious Design Institute.