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The Danish Art of ‘Open Air Living’


You may be familiar with the Danish term “hygge” which defines a way of living focused on fostering a sense of coziness, contentment, and well-being. The concept of hygge has influenced home-design trends for years, and it’s not the only lifestyle that the Danish have introduced us to; “friluftsliv” (pronounced free-loofts-liv) is another way of life that has risen in popularity. Often defined as the art of open-air living, friluftsliv is all about embracing nature and the outdoors, and here in Colorado, we love it.

If anyone can appreciate the coexistence of hygge and friluftsliv, it’s Coloradans. We’re experts on making frigid winters cozy by bundling up, dimming the lights, and relaxing by the fireplace. It’s also very Coloradan to wake up to several inches of snow and still hop on your bike to get to work, or head to the mountains on the weekend to ski and snowboard. The Colorado connection with nature makes friluftsliv an easy lifestyle to adopt, and we can give you some tips on how to reflect that in your home.

Curate Your Outdoor Space

Wanting to increase your home’s square footage is common in a city like Boulder, where space can be limited. Taking advantage of your outdoor space can be a real bonus when there are so many sunny days throughout the year.

“Buyers are currently looking to bring the indoors to outdoor spaces, meaning they are looking for comfortable seating with fire pits, TVs, etc.” said Century 21 realtor Brittany Balog. “People want to bring the comforts that are typically meant for the inside of the home to their outdoor living spaces. This is becoming more common as we know people are staying home more often and want more diversity in their living spaces.”

It’s always beneficial to increase the number of spaces where your family and friends can hang out. If you have an outdoor space that could use some sprucing up, we suggest building out your deck/patio, or perhaps completely renovating the landscaping so you can add amenities such as a hot tub or pergola. With a smaller budget, you can transform a space by upgrading your patio furniture, adding a firepit, and collecting cozy blankets and yard games for entertaining.

Colorado is lovely every month; did you know that we get an average of 300 days of sun each year? You can take advantage of these incredible sunny days by adding accordion windows to your main floor. Opening up your space to the great Colorado outdoors is a fantastic way to embrace friluftsliv in your home.

Bring the Outdoors In

Another way to incorporate friluftsliv in your living space is to fuse nature with your interior design. We suggest decorating your home with a variety of beautiful, lush plants. If you have a hard time keeping plants alive, try adopting some dry-climate plants such as succulents and cacti; you only have to water those a couple of times a month throughout the year. If you can give more attention to your plants, large house plants such as fiddle leaf figs and ferns are a beautiful addition that will liven up any space.

Diffusing essential oils is another great way to bring both nature and comfort into your home. Scents like lavender and orange are easy to find and can subtly infuse your space with natural elements.

If you’re looking for a way to bring nature into your home that doesn’t require daily maintenance, try playing around with different colors. Greens, blues, earthy oranges, and reds in your décor can be eye-catching and bring tranquility to your space at the same time.

Whether you’re in the mood to hibernate this winter by fully embracing hygge, or if you’d rather practice friluftsliv, we’d love to hear your thoughts. How do you adapt to the colder Colorado months?

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