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Linen Tablecloths

24
Mar
2017
1

Interview No.2 in A Simple Path: Erica Lee

Woohoo! Here’s the second instalment of our interview series, A Simple Path, which explores how inspiring, creative people are doing more with less.

This month we had the absolute pleasure of interviewing Erica Lee, @thehyggewife on Instagram and creator of thehyggewife.com. We are huge fans of Erica’s stunning photography and admire her commitment to living a simpler, more intentional life. Sit back and enjoy – we think you are going to love this one.

  1.  Can you tell us what you do and how you came to be doing it?

Most of what I do revolves around my life as a wife and mom. It is where my motivation and inspiration comes from every day. In addition, I am a writer, photographer, homemaker, and connoisseur of all things hygge. Hygge is a Danish word that means, in simple terms, ‘coziness’, but that I consider to be a lifestyle. I live my life around it and have devoted my blog to inspiring others to find hygge in their lives.

I haven’t always lived a simple, intentional life. However, one day a year ago when I was exceptionally overwhelmed I began reading about hygge. Everything about it just really resonated with me. For me, it wasn’t just tea cups and blankets – I learned to build a lifestyle upon it.

I then started my Instagram @thehyggewife. Being the wife of a Norwegian (the word ‘hygge’ is Danish but originated in Norway), the name The Hygge Wife became my online journal for documenting our lifestyle. I aim to inspire others to also look for cozy moments, find meaning in the little things, and live more intentionally.

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  1. If you had one piece of advice or wisdom to pass onto your younger self, what would it be?

I have always been kind of an old soul. I love white and grey and, growing up, that was seen as kind of weird (though funnily enough it is now an appealing color scheme). I love to write more than anything, and I love to take notes! I’ve finally realized that it’s okay to be myself. I’ve always been interested in a simpler way of living, and I’ve always been afraid of how most of the world would view that (even now, I often get comments like, ‘Simple living? But why? You’re still young!’). However, when I finally found hygge and decided to build and document a lifestyle around it, I learned that there will always be those that don’t understand, but so many who will. No matter how ‘weird’ you think you are, there are people out there like you, waiting for you open up and make them feel like they belong somewhere. I hope that those out there looking for a simpler lifestyle will feel like they’ve come home, when they happen upon my feed or website.

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  1. What is it about the simple life that you find appealing?

When you live more simply, you feel more deeply.

I don’t know of a better way to explain it. Living with less allows us to slow down, consider, come to terms with things we may have been neglecting or work on things we want to improve. We can focus on what matters, we can realize that we don’t need to always have ‘the next best thing’ in order to feel good about ourselves. When we eliminate the unnecessary things, we can take the time to serve others, strengthen our friendships, feel more connected with our children or significant others, and follow our passions.

 

  1. How can we counter the pulls of content-sharing and curating images of our lives with the need for being in the moment?

I wish I had better advice for this one! It can be hard to find a balance, because you want to capture your ‘real life’ for your audience (and for yourself), but you also want your images to look good. I would say, just get into the habit of taking your camera with you wherever you go and get quick at using manual mode. That way, in a beautiful moment, you can snap the picture quickly and then get back to enjoying that precious moment.

 

  1. Who inspires you?

Kim Klassen. Oh gosh. What can I say?! Kim has been my biggest inspiration as I’ve navigated through my creative journey. I love her theme of ‘finding stillness’, and the beauty she conveys in simple moments. Kim is also a mentor and friend who gives me great ideas and cares so much about seeing me succeed. She is an amazing photographer and entrepreneur as well.

Angie Wendricks, from @countyroadliving, lives in a simple, yet beautiful country home. She shares everyday on Instagram about her minimalist lifestyle and it is such an inspiration to me. I hope to one day achieve the level of simplicity that she conveys.

My husband: He pushes me to keep striving and never to doubt myself.

My baby: He finds joy in the littlest things, like touching my hair.

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  1. What are your essential homeware items/things you couldn’t do without?

Candles and string lights: We have white string lights decorating our bedroom, and candles throughout the house. I light a candle at my desk every time I sit down to work, and every time we sit at the kitchen table for a meal. Even at breakfast, my son and I share our breakfast muesli and porridge by candlelight. It marks the beginning and ending of each activity, and candles help me to stay present in the moment, and let everything else melt away.

Good Books:

I’m currently reading ‘The Danish Way of Parenting’ (which I’ve written about on the blog under ‘Motherhood‘), and I’m also in the middle of ‘The Book of Hygge’ by Louisa Thomsen Brits.

For cookbooks, I love ‘A Kitchen in France: A Year of Cooking in my Farmhouse’. It’s not Scandinavian, of course, but I love her emphasis on simple ingredients and finding time to cook. Another I use often is ‘Gluten Free Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day.’

Linen bedding and table linens: Just so many linens! I love the natural and rustic look of them. We have linen bedding and napkins, and I am currently trying to sew linen baby blankets, so we’ll see how that goes.​..

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Cake Platters: Every Friday, we have ‘Friday fika‘ at our house. It is a weekly tradition of gathering on a Friday evening, chatting about our weeks and the weekend to come, and indulging in a made-from-scratch treat. I usually bake something Scandinavian for it, but not necessarily. I love looking forward to it at the end of the week, and it is such a wonderful way to mark the beginning of the weekend, sitting and chatting and eating together.

Our shaggy rug: We have one of those giant, shaggy rugs. Not only does it provide a soft place to land, but cozy materials like this bring more hygge into the home. It has become the center of our home and is where we tend to subconsciously gather.

Nature at home: Bringing nature into our homes actually makes them feel more cozy. It gives our homes a natural element and reminds us of the wonder that lies outside our doors.

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  1. What would you like to be doing in 10 years time?

Oh gosh! So many things! Most importantly, I plan to have a bigger family, and to be raising kids to live simply and cherish each other and the outdoors. I hope that in ten years time I will be continuing to do what I love, which is to inspire others to find meaning and beauty in simplicity, and to teach them about how I’ve built a lifestyle around the concept of hygge.

I just published a guide to hygge and Nordic living on my site that is free for my email subscribers. It’s all about hygge, of course, and gives you applicable ways to ‘hygge’ in your own life. However, in the future, I would love to write a full-on book about hygge.

And I would also love to host workshops around the world on photography, writing and simple living.

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Thanks so much Erica! It has been a delight to dip into your world, and we look forward to following your adventures with hygge in the future.

21
Jan
2017
0

Cleaning linen the old-fashioned way: Urine, sour milk and elbow grease!

If you thought doing laundry was a chore, we’ve got some fascinating historical facts about how people cared for linen before modern washing machines and Persil made an appearance. Linenbeauty.com met with textile historian and museums officer Emma O’Connor, of Sussex Past, a charity which runs several historic sites in Sussex, England, and learned some pretty eye-opening things about caring for linens the old-school way. Here’s what she told us:

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19
Dec
2016
0

7 Ways to Look After Yourself Over the Holiday Season

This time of year is hectic. All that time spent running around getting things for other people, finding costumes for Nativity plays, baking things, throwing parties and trying to keep the peace within our families. And whilst it is the season for goodwill towards others, it is so important to look after yourself as well. If you are feeling overwhelmed or daunted by all that Christmas and New Year brings, here are 7 ways to make sure you have the energy to keep going, and to stay happy.

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28
Oct
2016
0

The Words You Need to Know When Choosing Linen

Browsing for linen and baffled by words like ‘huckaback’ and ‘thread count’? Don’t know your stonewash from your garment wash? Never fear, Linenbeauty is here to set you straight and guide you through the sometimes complicated business of buying linen products. Here are some of the key terms you might come across, and what you need to know to make the right choice.

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16
Sep
2016
0

5 Easy Ways to Create a Stunning Fall Tablescape

Despite the fact that in our part of the world we are experiencing a mini heatwave, our thoughts are turning to the Fall. We love this season shift, as the nights draw in and the evenings become chilly. There is such bounty in Fall: the ripe fruit hanging from the trees waiting to be eaten or preserved, the hedgerows swaying under the weight of juicy blackberries, the squash and pumpkins swelling above the soil. Then there’s all the thrills of Halloween, Thanksgiving (in the US) and Bonfire Night (in Britain). We find ourselves drawn to rituals that celebrate light in the face of the coming darkness of winter. Read More

12
Aug
2016
0

How to win at picnics: handy hints for a beautiful spread

If, like us, you are trying to eke out these last few weeks of summer by spending as much time as possible outdoors, here are some handy hints to help you picnic in style. Whether you are planning a big get-together, an impromptu open-air meal a deux or escaping from your desk with a lunchbox and blanket, we’ve got picnicking covered.

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22
Jul
2016
0

Create an Inviting Outdoor Space With These 5 Simple Tips

With the advent of summer comes the joy of eating, drinking and generally relaxing outdoors. It’s time, then, for some easy ways you can make your outdoor space more inviting and beautiful. Here’s our 5 top tips:

1. Cushions

Add softness and comfort to the outdoors by scattering some cushions. This will instantly brighten up your chairs and benches, and pull together your colourscheme. You can even drape blankets or sheets from trees and fill the space beneath with rugs and cushions for a boho-style tipi. If simple is more your thing, stick to a neutral palette to create a serene feel to your outdoor space.

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3
Feb
2015
0

How to Iron Table Linen Like a Pro

Let’s face it – planning a dinner is great, but preparing for it takes a lot of time and effort. The most terrifying and excruciating work that needs to be done before the dinner party is to iron your tablecloths and dozens of napkins. If you are having tough time ironing, maybe you are doing it wrong. When done properly, this work actually doesn’t require a lot of your energy and the results can be quite astonishing – neat lines, no mess at all, that’s how tablecloths should look.

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