If you haven’t heard of hygge, you're missing out on one of 2017's top trends. This Danish concept is all about relaxing at home with loved ones, as well as combining simple Scandi décor with plush and warm details.
This year, the design world has turned to the Scottish Gaelic equivalent – còsagach – for fresh inspiration. But what is còsagach? And why are we so set on capturing cosiness in 2018?
Hygge's homeliness was one of the key lifestyle trends of 2017. Elegant Scandinavian design has been popular for years, but it's only recently that the region's love of warm and welcoming interiors has had a global impact.
It certainly seemed to strike a chord with British homeowners. In the UK, buyers are increasingly prioritising a pleasant living room over the traditional bathroom/ kitchen combination. Meanwhile, many are opting to avoid big, opulent houses as the trend for micro homes takes off. So it’s hardly surprising that hygge, and cosiness generally, has gradually been inching out modern minimalism as the trend of the moment.
With that clearly in mind, VisitScotland was quick to tout the potential of còsagach, pronounced “kaw-sa-goch”, to add a new twist to the Nordic niceties. Còsagach, they say, is the feeling of being 'snug, sheltered or cosy' – something Scotland’s developed a talent for during its often long, cold winters.
Còsagach conjures images of sharing hot toddies in rural and wind-battered log cabins, or stepping into welcoming pubs complete with cheery ceilidhs (Celtic music and dance). These cosy traditions even cemented Scotland's place as the world’s most welcoming country in the recent Rough Guide reader awards.
Specialists in the Scottish Gaelic language reveal what the term really means. Skye-based expert Mark Wringe told The Guardian that it’s less directly about cosiness and more about mossiness, claiming it’s "an adjective derived from còsag, a wee nook or hole such as very small creatures might live in."
These earthy origins carry some interesting design possibilities. Natural materials are a growing trend in interior design, with wood finishes, cork and slate all making a splash last year. These textures and nature-inspired prints could be just the details còsagach inspires in 2018.