Hygge-ldy Piggledy Life: The Sequel

One of my first posts on this blog was about the concept of hygge.

As part of being a real live adult with a home, Scrubs and I are in the middle of an attempted renovation. Nothing fancy, nothing exotic – no quilted leather walls or extensions for the craftroom I dream of eventually having – just making the place more home-y, more calming, more hygge.

I am not a tidy person; I am always late for everything and so my last moments in the house are often frantic scrambles to get myself together. Since I never leave myself enough time to go through everything in a relaxed and methodical manner, I instead turn into a human hurricane, flinging items out of the wardrobe with reckless abandon until I’ve found what I’m looking for. Then I dash out the door, only to come home several hours later to a room that looks like a bombsite.

Naturally by that stage I’m already late for something else, so I don’t have time to tidy up…

And so it goes.

The only exception to this rule is if everything looks exactly as it should.

If my place looks staged – as if it’s been set up by Chip and Joanna Gaines before a viewing – with everything exactly where it should be, down to the candles and the plants and the woollen throws, then my Dr. Junkyard Jekyll turns into Ms. Houseproud Hyde. Even one thing out of place will rub me the wrong way. I need things to look right. If they don’t look right to start with then there’s no point in even bothering, but if they look right and then somebody moves something… woe betide them.

I don’t honestly know where this comes from or why this is. Unfortunately, as I said, this strange compulsion only comes over me when things look exactly right, which doesn’t happen very often. At the present moment, the only thing that looks exactly right is the bedroom, and even that could really do with a rug and a coat of paint. I’m almost afraid to get the place done up exactly as I’m imagining it, because I have a not-completely-unfounded fear I’ll turn into some sort of monster of meticulousness*.

Luckily hygge life gives a lot of scope for flexibility, since it’s all about cosy reading nests, and soft textures (very important), and low lighting, and making yourself a relaxing refuge from the world. Hopefully with the aid of candles and white linen and soft blankets and white-stained oak and a lick of paint the place will turn into the most beachy beachhouse that isn’t at all a beachhouse in any way.

So far I have a few questions though:

  • Why all the floral bedsets? What is up with that? I am not a floral fan.
  • What is a thread count and when does it matter and should I even care?
  • How do you choose the right pillow?**
  • a) How difficult is stripping wallpaper?
  • And part b) am I just as well painting over it?
  • How can I create storage space out of thin air?
  • Why is everything home-related about five times as expensive as your estimate?
  • Can it be a bank holiday every week so I can use the Monday to catch up on life?A HYGGE-LDY PIGGLEDY LIFE

I’m off to google all these things and more.

Happy Hump Day, everyone.

*Except when I’m crafting, because that inevitably takes up every available surface (hence the need for a separate crafting room/shed/barn/house)

**At this stage I think I need an Ollivander-style shop where the pillow chooses me…



  • Dangerspouse

    It’s always fun to watch someone start down “The Best Laid Plans….” path.

    But good luck! I’m sure whatever compro…er, wonderful design and furnishings you decide on, it will be the hygge you dream of. (My wife is building a craft room in our basement as I type this. I’ll post pics when it’s done – maybe it can give you some ideas.)


    • Quinn

      Hahaha thank you your confidence in my abilities is motivational! I’m extremely jealous of your wife’s craftroom already, even if it’s only half-finished…

  • The Real Reality Show Blog

    While you’re Googling, would you mind adding this one for me. I thought of it as I read your question, why is everything fives as expensive as the estimate? This is related. Why does everything take three times as long as the article/Web site/instructions claim? My daughter noticed this year’s ago and it’s so true. If a how to video claims a room van be stripped of wallpaper (don’t skip that step, don’t ask, just trust me on that one -oy!), washed, taped, and repainted in 3 days it took us 9 to 10. Sanding a small bedroom floor, instruction manual estimate 6 hours; me, a day and a half. I never understood it but it seemed an accurate gauge. Triple all time estimates.

  • Institution of Parenthood

    That’s what I am doing to my new house these days! Farmhouse decor all the way! I am however losing my mind over all these decor related decisions. I thought being the artsy kind i was going to adore home decorating. Instead I am having FOMO over picking the wrong couch.

    • Quinn

      There is no wrong couch as long as it’s comfy as hell and you feel like you’re sitting on a cloud when you sink into it. You can always change the look of it with throws or cover sheets or whatever the hell later on!

      Farmhouse decor is so beautiful… bit pretentious in my apartment unfortunately. Don’t want people to think I’ve got notions!

  • bexoxo

    DO NOT PAINT OVER WALLPAPER!!! You’re supposed to use a chemical product of some variety to strip the adhesive quality the paper is applied with. If you paint over it, the paint will act like a barrier preventing that needed chemical reaction for removal (that does not include taking out the drywall completely).

    As for thread count, I feel like the higher count, the more bougie you seem. It’s all personal preference. I like 300 count; they’re soft and breathable and easy to care for. But for reference, most nice hotels use 1000+ count on their beds.

    I just recently bought a pillow for $60 (originally $200!) and it has been the best decision of my life! It’s a bamboo threaded pillow so it stays cool even when in use and it has a get insert instead of cotton fluff most standard pillows have. I adore my new pillow and will probably have to travel with it because it is that nice.

    • Quinn

      A pillow that STAYS COOL. This is what dreams are made of! I looked up the 1000+ thread count sheets and my God, who has that kind of money to spend on SHEETS?!

      Thanks for the tip about the wallpaper. I’m eyeballing it now wondering if I can just attack it now like a rabid dog or if I should wait and do it over the weekend…

  • Becca Barracuda

    My house was COVERED in wallpaper when we bought it– ugly, oddly-colored, floral wallpaper, everywhere! The first three rooms we did, we peeled, scraped, and shouted at it to come off. Which it did eventually, but there were a lot of grooves in the wall, even after sanding it down, which drives my husband crazy. When we did the next two rooms, my hubs said “Fuck it,” and just put up new drywall over it. Much easier, and everything looks perfect (except, of course, that I no longer like the color).

    Also, if you figure out the pillow thing, fill me in! Why is it so hard?!

    • Quinn

      Yes. Ours is ugly and floral also. WHY? WHY IS FLORAL CHASING ME? I don’t know a single thing about drywall so I’m not sure that would be any easier…. If I decipher the pillow code I will for sure let you know!


    My husband was like “Baby, all of your makeup and hair brushes and stuff are spread between the upstairs and downstairs bathroom, let’s get them all together so you don’t have to stress so much in the morning” and I’m like “Muffin, if I don’t rage scream “WHERE’S MY F***ING MASCARA” before I leave the house, then I will have to take all that rage with me into traffic. I lose my mascara as a public service!”

  • josypheen

    Why all the floral bedsets? What is up with that? I am not a floral fan.

    I think it might be mum mums fault (and other mums!) I am not a fan of floral bed spreads either, but my mum seems to genuinely love them.

    What is a thread count and when does it matter and should I even care?

    It only matters if you like the feeling of them. I get eczema and so I find really low thread count (lower than 200) feels like it is scratching my skin. So, I try to go higher so that I feel happy in bed. 300+ is good. 500+ is lovely and 1000+ is too expensive without a massive change in the feeling.

    How do you choose the right pillow?

    Urgh. I am so bad at this. You can attempt putting your head on them in the shop, but you never know how it’ll feel until you get home. 🙁

    I don’t know much about wall paper or magic-ing storage solutions…

    • josypheen

      Why is everything home-related about five times as expensive as your estimate?

      Occasionally you can find things in Ikea that are perfect and cheaper than you expect! But mostly, this is because you have good taste.

      Can it be a bank holiday every week so I can use the Monday to catch up on life?

      Yes. I’d be happy for this to be implemented. Make it so. (Please.)

      • Quinn

        I do harbour an intense and passionate love for Ikea, but even in Ikea I have “expensive” taste…. Ho hum…!

    • Quinn

      I’m trying to work out the precise pillow formula but it’s impossible! And now that you mention it, I have seen a lot of florals in mom homes…

      • josypheen

        My mum likes flowers on beds, curtains and even rugs! Same at my grandmas house(!)

        It makes sense as the shops wouldn’t sell them unless lots of people really wanted to buy them!

  • Anthony

    I wish I could help you, but I am hopeless at organizing my house. I have great dreams, but I might have to hire a professional

    As for pillows, a good one is an investment. It might seem like a lot of money, but a few extra nights of good sleep are worth it. Of course, a good mattress is also an important investment. I have pillow that is higher on one side than the other and I love it.

      • Anthony

        I don’t know if you have heard of the Kon Mari method–I can’t say I took a lot away from her books, but a few things really stood out.
        And yes, there are professional organizers, organizing blogs, and of course TV shows.

  • Angela

    With every post I’m convinced we are twins separated at birth!!!!
    I was one minute late for work this morning(thats early-ish by my standards), the entire contents of my wardrobe have been vomited from the wardrobe doors and some items even made it as far as the hallway and bathroom…there might also be an odd shoe half way down the stairs.. My drawers however are an OCD heaven everything folded crisp and to the exact same shape and size and sitting in little rows like soldiers and it will remain like that until I’m looking for something in there of course.
    I redecorated my bedroom last spring and vowed I would never strip wallpaper or paint ever again, it was exhausting and messy and …oh I’m so glad its over! GOOD LUCK, it will all be worth it in the end!!

    FYI- by general rule, the higher the thread count the softer the sheet, the higher the thread count the better the snuggle 😉

    • Quinn

      Thankfully there is only one wall of heinous wallpaper so I’m hoping it doesn’t take me a year and a half to get rid of it. If anything my enthusiasm for getting it Out. Of. The. House should fuel a burst of energy the likes of which has never been witnessed in me or my actions.

      Human hurricane season is no joke.

      • Angela

        Yeah once you start you just have to get it all finished as soon as possible!!!!

        Defo no joke, when I first moved back to my parents my Mum thought we had been victims of a burglary 🙈

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