Many people view the first days of January as an annual invitation to invent “a new you.” A concerted effort to follow through on a New Year’s resolution is one way to try to avoid the darker moods that winter’s shortened daylight hours can foster in many people, whether you live in Greenwich and the Northeast or points south like Tampa, where the days shorten as well. A different angle to a new you was offered in an ABC News article authored by Drs A. Zellmer and J. Lius last week. It promoted a New Year’s resolution that more directly targets the sunlight deficit: “Practicing hygge can help you beat the ‘winter blues’. But what the heck is "hygge"?
The term “hygge” became popular around 2015 as a movement in interior design. Hygge (pronounced ‘HOO-ga’) is a Danish word that describes an approach to living that prioritizes affection, togetherness, and slow living in general. In homes and real estate, this means everything from swapping bright fluorescents to warm light bulbs in lamps in an effort to create “all the coziness, kinship, and candles of a thousand Hallmark movies”, as one non-ABC exec put it.
It’s no coincidence that the concept originated in Denmark, one of the Scandinavian countries with pronouncedly deep, dark winter months. In the U.S., one fellow at the American Psychological Association cites the comforting effect lighting and aromas can provide: “Research has shown that the smell of lavender and vanilla is particularly relaxing to the population at large.” Especially when the weather turns nasty, some American stagers recognize that a dash or two of hygge could be just what a house needs “to make a tired winter buyer feel warm and fuzzy enough to make an offer.”
Whether you are planning to list your property this winter and decide to adopt a hygge approach or just want to find a better way to get through the darker winter months, start with a few candles and change to softer lightbulbs. One of our favorite holiday gifts we gave this year was the Italian-made Meloria ball candle. We love Julia at Julia Moss Designs for the Meloria candle.