Inside: Learn how hygge and simple living can work together to create a cozy space without adding clutter to your home.

Do you crave a home that feels cozy, warm, and inviting – but don’t want to fill your space up with clutter?

Does a simpler lifestyle make sense to you – but not a sterile, cold home?

Welcome to the intersection of hygge and simple living. By embracing hygge concepts, you can totally make your home a comfortable, joy-filled space to entertain friends and enjoy quiet nights.

And by sticking to minimalist principles, you can practice simple living at the same time.


Keep reading to learn more about hygge and simple living, and how you can embrace both in your home to create the cozy, clutter-free space of your dreams! 

hygge and simple living

What is Hygge?

Hygge is a trend that’s gotten more and more attention in recent years. Originating in Denmark, the concept of hygge is easy to love. Hygge is defined as “a quality of coziness and comfortable conviviality that engenders a feeling of contentment or well-being.”

While a bit wordy, that sounds lovely, doesn’t it?

When you break it down, it really does capture the spirit of hygge. It’s all about coziness, comfort, and sharing those feelings with those around you.

Hygge is about being content with what you have and not constantly craving more. It’s slow evenings spent with good people, reading a good book while snuggled up under a cozy blanket, and the right playlist to set the mood. 

And it’s something we can all benefit from incorporating into our lives, especially right now.

But can you make it happen without inviting tons of clutter and stuff into your space? 

Can you embrace the concept of hygge while choosing to live simply?

Benefits of Simple Living

Like hygge, simple living has gotten a lot of attention over the last few years. In today’s society, we’re surrounded by constant distractions.

Thanks to the power of technology, we’re constantly connected to everyone and everything – which can be good and bad. We’re inundated with advertisements for the latest shoes, cars, and stuff.

And we’re conditioned to believe that the amount of stuff we own is a direct reflection of our success and personal worth.

Simple living challenges that idea by encouraging people to simplify their lives and shake off some of the burdens of modern society.

For some, it means a truly minimalist lifestyle – saying goodbye to most physical possessions and really doubling down on the “less is more” philosophy.

hygge and simple living

Others, like myself, take a less extreme approach, focusing more on eliminating clutter and being strategic about the stuff they bring into their homes while still enjoying the benefits of living simply.

Regardless of how you choose to interpret it,  the idea of simple living can directly contradict some aspects of hygge.

So how can the two co-exist in a single space?

Hygge and Simple Living: Can You Have Both?

Now, you might be wondering… can you actually embrace hygge while living a simple life?

YES! You absolutely can.

At the end of the day, the concept of hygge isn’t about physical stuff. It’s about creating an atmosphere that inspires coziness, comfort, connection, and happiness. 

Some people think that directly translates to a space filled with blankets, pillows, poufs, candles, paintings, and decor to set the mood – but that doesn’t have to be the case.

You can cultivate a hygge space while practicing simple living, which is all about cutting out excess and being happy with what you have. It’s all about balance and being intentional when you bring new items into your space. 

Are you ready to make it happen?

hygge and simple living

Ways to Create a Cozy Space – No Clutter Needed!

With a little effort, you can create a cozy minimalist home that feels a little more hygge without cluttering up your space.

By shaking up the colors in your space, the way you light your home and being intentional about the things you bring into it, you’ll be on your way to making your home more hygge in no time! 

Choose a neutral color scheme.

Using lots of bright colors in your home can create a space that’s distracting and visually jarring.

If you’re looking to embrace hygge and keep it simple, you can’t go wrong with a neutral color scheme. Beiges, browns, grays, and creams are great colors to use when trying to create a balanced, warm, and inviting space.

There’s nothing wrong with a pop of color here or there, but overall, a neutral color scheme is the way to go if you want to create a space that balances hygge and simple living.

Use candles and lighting to your advantage.

Lighting can have a tremendous impact on how cozy – or not – your space feels.

In the absence of a lot of physical stuff, you’ll be surprised to see just how easily the right lighting can totally shift the mood in your space. Lighting can make you productive and focused, alert and awake, or cozy and content.

To embrace the latter sentiment throughout your home, strategically place candles around your space for some ambient light. If you don’t enjoy burning candles in your home, there are some great battery-powered options that give you a cozy vibe without the scent or smoke.

Consider adding dimmers to your existing lights, too – it’s an easy way to control the brightness in any given room. Changing out light bulbs for warmer tones can also be very helpful.

Fairy lights with a warm-toned white option can be another fun element to add to your space.

hygge and simple living

Pick the right fabrics. 

If you’re trying not to fill your space with a lot of stuff, you need to be thoughtful about the things you do bring into it. Another easy way to add a little hygge to your minimalist space is through the fabrics you choose.

One or two throw blankets draped over a rustic ladder or a few well-chosen throw pillows can be an easy way to shake up a room. 

But even the fabric of your furniture can have a huge influence on how hygge your space feels. A sleek, modern black sofa with metal accents is probably going to remind you of a corporate office – not a cozy, relaxing space where you want to spend time with friends.

Choosing warm colors and soft fabrics for sofas, chairs, throws, and rugs can really go a long way in setting the mood. Varying textures bring a depth and coziness to the space without feeling overwhelming.

Be intentional with decorations.

Decorations can be a slippery slope when it comes to trying to find a balance between hygge and simple living. Too many decor pieces can leave your home feeling cluttered. However, having none can feel totally impersonal and very un-hygge. 

So what do you do?

You’ve got to be smart when it comes to decorating your space. Don’t splurge on every decor item that catches your eye. Instead, sit on the idea and wait to make your purchase until you truly know it’s a good fit for your room. 

Be selective and intentional with shopping. Selecting a few statement pieces is much better than having many small decor items.

Bringing in natural elements is another great way to add hygge and cozy minimalist vibes without adding a lot of extra stuff to your home.

Decide what the right amount of stuff is for your home.

You can create a cozy home while also living simply. And it is possible to decorate without cluttering your home.

A key part of the process is knowing what is too much for your home. Each person’s definition of what is cozy and what is minimal is different.

Decluttering is an important part of balancing simple living and hygge. It also takes knowing where the balance falls for you, which is something only you can answer. What is clutter to one is not clutter to another.

The goal is to create a place where you feel comfortable. Ideally, that also means having a lower maintenance space that isn’t packed with excess stuff that you don’t use or love.

You get to decide what hygge and simple living looks like for your home.

Want to dive deeper into cozy minimalism? Check out this book review of Cozy Minimalist Home by MyQuillyn Smith. She offers helpful insights and inspiring pictures of cozy minimalist spaces.

How do you balance hygge and simple living? Leave a comment and share your experience with us! 

Sign up on the form below to get weekly tips on simplifying and decluttering sent straight to your inbox. You’ll also get the free 5 Areas to Declutter in 10-Minutes Checklist to help you get started in creating your cozy minimalist space today!

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  1. Love this post Julianna. For me hygge is all about warm soft lighting (salt lamps, diffuser, twinkle lights) cozy throw blankets, and a nice cuppa tea. I also love to take time for more “analog” activities like playing a board game with my hubby, reading a book, or writing.

  2. That’s a great post. I think I would picture a minimalist cozy space as having warm creamy walls, or maybe shade of brown, and like you say, matching furniture. We can’t just replace the existing furtniture, but fabric covers on sofa or armchair might make a difference without adding too much maintanence. Food for thought for sure.

  3. The room with the grey furniture, empty picture frames, scattered cushions and a side display of bits n’ pieces feels very busy on the eye! So, I’m clicking on “How to Decorate without Clutter” ….

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