It seems that the danish concept of HYGGE (pronounced hoo-gah) has exploded in the last year, with extensive hygge-inspired research carried out, books & articles written, houses and gardens designed and lives transformed. We even saw a hygge-themed garden entry in this years Bloom Festival. I was introduced to HYGGE early this year after wandering around the book shops of Grafton Street in search of inspiration, when I literally judged a book by its pretty, minimalistic cover and picked up “Hygge; A celebration of simple pleasures” by Charlotte Abrahams. I immediately fell in love with the Danish way of life, and it became very clear why Denmark, despite it’s perceiveably bleak climate, is consistently ranked the happiest country in the world.

One of my favourite things  about Hygge is the absence of a direct English translation for it. There has been recent talks of the word being added to the English dictionary  with a description of “cosy”, and while cosines is no doubt a huge part of what hygge is all about, there is so much more to it than this simple translation, and besides it can hold a million different meanings to each individual who embraces it. Without a direct translation or description, hygge continues to be uniquely Danish & special to the beholder.

Roughly descibed, hygge is a feeling of being utterly content, both physically & mentally, either alone or surrounded by good people. It allows for guilt-free indulgence, stripping the likes of ‘comfort food’ and ‘lazy days’ of the negative feelings attached to them. Feeling bad about the things that make us happy in life is an absolute tragedy. In the wise words of Dave Grohl, “If you like something, fucking like it. No guilty pleasures.”

Hygge is not a way of life nor a set of rules to live by, it is a feeling. A feeling that we long for and find difficult to grasp, yet we have all felt it. A feeling that we cannot simply explain or translate, yet it is about simplicity. We used to know how to be happy before religion and science and life told us how. Hygge recognises this and reminds us how to celebrate life’s simple pleasures, whatever they may be.


sunday walks with my mam visiting my grandparents saturday morning lie ins stroking my cat eating outdoors in the sun vintage shopping on payday drinks at airport garden terrace floatation therapy playing chess tea and toast before bed fake tanning reading alone in a wine bar browsing market stalls researching holidays after-work drinks on fridays cycling listening to spotify lunchtime yoga writing learning about irish history picnics moorefield v sarsfields matches putting on out of office alert crackers and cheese the grateful dead everything about eggs after-session singalongs sleeping in my own bed after holidays rainy days spent inside indian food takeaway looking at christmas lights eating in govindas cycling watching the office talking to brother and sister on the phone pinxtos in bilbao music documentaries vsiting garden centres spanish tapas bars looking at old photos CONTD.



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