Pronounce it as you will, but I think when you get to a certain age in life an understanding of “Hygge” evolves naturally, in this fast paced digital age, it is a state that we yearn for daily.
But I think what we have actually been waiting for is the permission to indulge it without feeling guilty.
So why has this permission, suddenly been granted? Because the behemoth that is retail can see there is some mega money to be made from it – why else?
Some very clever marketeers were looking for the next big trend, they studied the two, so called, key wealthy demographics’ in Europe at the moment; the baby boomers & the millennials and figured out what these groups had in common, which is, quite a lot as it happens – but one of the main things is the need for “breathing space”, not necessarily outdoors, just space to quietly get your head straight, relax, enjoy the simple things without the frantic outside world nudging into your orbit and demanding action. Time to appreciate nature, art, food, quiet, any and all of the gifts that God has given us.
Whilst these marketeer’s were identifying this latent need and observing the enjoyment people got from (shock horror) non-commercial things, walking, reading, gardening, eating fresh etc etc. Several Danish authors had also hit upon the Hygge phenomena, wrote books about it and consequently the perfect storm for the next trend occurred.
I won’t deny, that if you have got the money then a complete Scandi makeover is possible, even indulging in the most exquisite scented candles is nice (ish), and purchasing the most expensive Kopi Luwak coffee is perhaps pleasurable – But I’m not so sure.
To me the only way this Hygge craze can become more worthwhile than a Sunday supplement fad is if we embrace it at a basic level and forget buying into the trappings i.e.
Scandi Lifestyle Interiors – yes a bloody good clean out and de cluttering is good for the soul – but NOT, if by cleaning off the Ercol unit and throwing out Auntie Mavis’s prized Royal Worcester figurine causes the need for re-decorating and investment in a scrubbed wood furniture and a reindeer skin – to my mind the upheaval of dust cloths and hoovering up shedding hair fibres is NOT relaxing.
Fresh Kale & 80% Madagascan Cocoa Chocolate smoothies – you are kidding me right? NO NO NO Curly Kale with a Roast Chicken dinner – cracking, a nice bar of special fruit & nut – can’t beat it, but cleaning out the smoothie maker (well actually retrieving it from the back of the deepest cupboard cleaning it, using it and washing it again, in my case) is NOT pleasurable.
A myriad of fragrant candles – I have a friend who works for the world’s largest candle company, so I know just how many people love a candle – but tell me, why would you want your home smelling of a “driftwood camp fire” or “freshly baked cinnamon apple pie” – I know I live in Somerset but I do this weird thing – it’s called opening the window –sorry not cool? Nothing new there then.
We Brits have known how to do Hygge for many many years, cosy comfortable living, appreciating nice food and good friends, admiring our beautiful countryside and the benefit of a kind word and a good giggle.
What we have to remember is we are blessed with all these things for FREE so please don’t let some clever marketeer make us start paying for them.