6 Hygge Tips for All-Season Coziness

When we think hygge (hoo-gah; Danish coziness), we often think of winter, hibernation, curling up in a big, thick blanket — but it’s a lifestyle, something to embrace all year long. We’ve come up with a list of ideas to keep that cozy, happy vibe going season after season.

1. LIGHT & AMBIANCE

Hygge Design Tips - Signature Toile Flannel Bedding
A crackling fire, the glow and sophisticated scent of candles, the shimmer of metallic and glass, fairy lights in branches… Whether it’s a gathering of family and friends or some well-deserved alone time, these things create a warm, inviting atmosphere.

2. COZY TEXTURES

Hygge Design Tips - The Blue Moon Bedroom
Soft cashmere, baby alpaca, New Zealand wool, lustrous silk, rustic linen, brushed cotton… Texture adds comfort and makes you feel relaxed and well rested. Surround yourself with what you love by layering your bed and wardrobe with pieces that make you feel good. Cocoon away!

3. INSPIRED BY NATURE

Hygge Design Tips - The Organic Cotton Bedroom
By all means, get outdoors as much as you can, but when you must be inside, bring the nature into the space. Soft botanical prints, a knotty wood grain, driftwood, seashells, fresh flowers, house plants, and artfully arranged branches can add natural elements to a room. And don’t stop at home — infuse nature into your office or workspace, too.

4. CREATE BOOK NOOKS

Hygge Design Tips - Interlocking Box Shelves
Build and share mini libraries around your home. A collection of your favorites arranged on a nightstand in the guest room, a couple shelves in the living room, a basket of books in the breakfast nook or in the dining room. Engage family and guests (and spark conversations) with a wide array of topics and stories ranging from epic fiction and biographies to history and fine art books.

5. CHUNKY CERAMICS

Hygge Design Tips
An ideal blend of practicality and art, there’s something truly special about hand-thrown ceramics. Eating warm noodles or oatmeal from a stoneware bowl, hot tea, coffee, or hot cocoa from a favorite mug, fresh flowers carefully arranged in a beautiful vase — all bring joy and comfort to daily routines.

6. SOOTHING COLORS

Hygge Design Tips - Eileen Fisher Ombre Cotton and Linen Duvet Cover
There’s quiet power in color. Selecting the right palette and tones can help you find comfort, energize your wardrobe and home, and elevate your mood. We recommend shades inspired by nature: a sea of deep-blue hues, lush greens, the soft blush of a sun-kissed morning sky, earthy neutrals and undyed fibers that communicate the lay of the land.

For more inspiration and special picks, explore the hygge-inspired corner of our collection.

Finding Hygge: Danish Coziness, the Garnet Hill Way

Finding Hygge: Danish Coziness, the Garnet Hill Way
By Shawn Anderson, Garnet Hill Copywriter

Hygge (pronounced hue-gah or hoo-gah) is the Danish concept of sublime coziness. It highlights simplicity, nature, quiet moments, and creature comforts as a path to happiness.
As I explored that sentiment for this post, I realized that hygge (though I’d never called it by that name) has always been an integral part of Garnet Hill. It’s not only in our designs; it’s part of our culture.

Today, I arrived at the office a little later than usual due to what meteorologists would call a wintery mix. By the time I pulled into the lot, blue skies and sunlight poked through the silvery storm clouds. It was quiet, still, and calm. Everything was encased and glimmering in ice. I took a couple of photos with my phone and listened to the Gale River as it flows by the lot. The ice on the shallow rapids made a chilly, clinking sound, serene yet haunting.
Franconia, NH Winter
I walked into the office, the original gambrel barn that housed the company when it outgrew the sugar shack down the road. It’s been remodeled, refurbished, and expanded over the years, but its charm is well preserved. It made me stop and wonder how it was back in the ‘70s and ‘80s. Who occupied my workspace at the front of the building back in the day?

In the reception area, tufted furniture, embroidered Nordic pillows, and a mix of soothing neutral hues — warm beiges, cool grays, and winter whites — greeted me.
Nordic Diamond Embroidered Pillow
I entered the Art Department and noticed a wonderful smell. Moira, one of our web designers, baked this morning, and had placed two ceramic dishes of scones on the meeting table. They were still warm, and their glaze resembled the latticework of icy branches outside the window. Golden scones with raisins and just a hint of orange, they were sunshine on this cold wintry day.
Scones
As people came in from the cold, they gathered at the table, savoring their morning coffee and scones. I observed their signature-Garnet-Hill garb: a coworker layered in a thick marled turtleneck sweater, another in sleek black yoga pants dressed up with a rosy cashmere wrap, and yet another in a simple yet chic black shift by Eileen Fisher.

Our spring catalog sat on each desktop, fresh off the press. The cover, simple yet striking, did not feature a product, which is another Garnet Hill signature. This issue was dressed with a cluster of verdigris succulents and fresh lemon to symbolize the coming of spring. The image was an artistic moment, a reflection of things to come, a hint of the tone we wish to set for the season with the new collection.
Garnet Hill Spring 2017 Catalog Cover

The office was a bit chilly, so I lifted the cotton-fleece throw draped over the back of my chair, the throw we have sold forever, and tossed it over my shoulders while my Mac booted up.

I thought about how much I like this throw: its deep shade of blue, its thickness, its softness, and its warmth. So cozy on cold winter mornings like today, and just as dependable in the summertime when the air conditioning is cranked up high.

Cozy. Happy. This is what hygge means to me. This is what it’s like at Garnet Hill.

Ideas for a Simple and Cozy Valentine’s Day

Garnet Hill Cashmere Wrap

Photo Credit: Chuck Olu-Alabi

Valentine’s day is fast approaching, and if you’re looking for style tips or gifting inspiration, you’ve come to the right spot. We’ve asked Charlotte Betts, blogger at Milk n Honee to share two simple tips on making this Valentine’s Day one to remember. This year’s theme? Cashmere.
They say that simplicity is the ultimate sophistication and I wholeheartedly agree. Here are some simple outfit and gifting ideas that could make all the difference this Valentine’s Day.

1. OUTFIT: Keep it stylishly simple.

This year, I dare you to step outside of that “conventional date night look” and try something simple yet stylish. We’ve all heard that less is more, and the same goes for personal style. The secret to upping the ante on basic pieces is to accessorize them the right way. A white button down blouse paired with a cashmere wrap, your favorite trousers, and a pair of heels provides effortless style.

Garnet Hill Cashmere Wrap

Photo Credit: Chuck Olu-Alabi

2. GIFTING: Thoughtful and cozy.

Valentine’s Day gifts are synonymous with jewelry. While there’s nothing wrong with another pair of earrings, I dare you to think outside the box this year!
My husband and I recently took an online quiz to help us discover our love language and I was surprised to find out that mine was receiving gifts. Everyone loves a thoughtful gift. I personally prefer intangible gifts – like an experience, a trip or an adventure – as they create special memories. Presents can be thoughtful as well, and simplicity is again the key.

Garnet Hill Mohair Throw

Photo Credit: Chuck Olu-Alabi

Who wouldn’t love to receive a soft, cozy blanket? Whether I’m working in my office, or on the couch catching up on my favorite shows, there’s always a throw somewhere nearby. This mohair throw in soft pink is my new favorite gift idea!

Hopefully these tips will spark a little inspiration this Valentine’s Day. Got any advice you’d like to share?

Garnet Hill Cashmere: Not So Much a Fiber As a Feeling

There is a little-known group of rather brilliant artisans who hand-link the seams of premium cashmere sweaters.

Their work finds its way into the collections of a handful of high-end clothiers in Europe, and just one in the United States: Garnet Hill.

Garnet Hill Cashmere Sweaters. Shirttail Cashmere Sweater.

For years, we’ve procured cashmere sweaters from this family-owned company. The father and son who run it practice a philosophy that mirrors our own: a passion for sublime quality, happy employees, and genuine concern for the environment.

Cashmere Fibers from Inner Mongolia

The herds of Kashmir goats in Inner Mongolia that provide raw fleece for Garnet Hill sweaters are responsibly managed, to conserve the land. Where others mix breeds to increase yield, these animals remain purebred.

The herders are all family businesses, too.
Cashmere Goats from Inner Mongolia

The workspace where our cashmere sweaters are made is energy-efficient and spotless. Solar panels generate 60% of the company’s electricity. At night, before the lights go off, its cool, resin-treated cement floor is saturated with water; during the day, it releases the humidity level that superior cashmere requires in processing.

Father and son came up with that.

Our maker doesn’t tumble-dry cashmere, as most do. The friction of tumble-drying during manufacturing can add two years of wear in 45 minutes. Father and son solved that one, too, inventing a drying process that applies warm and cold air on drying beds. No tumbling, no wear.

Our Eco cashmere colors are entirely unbleached and undyed yarns; the color of the goat’s fleece is the color of your sweater.

The cashmere sweaters we do add color to are dyed with certified eco-friendly German dyes. Greenpeace once invited our dye-maker to show others how to reduce chemicals in water discharge.

We could go on…

But you know what they say about Internet attention spans. By now, you’re probably already picking out a color.

And who can blame you? In the end, cashmere isn’t really about the technical stuff.

It’s not the fiber, it’s the feeling.
Cashmere Goats from Inner Mongolia

What do you call a group of…

Tulip Bouquet

What do you call a group of…

  • A group of Kashmir goats is called a herd.
  • A group of Garnet Hill cashmere sweaters is called a good start.
  • A group of parrots is called a pandemonium.
  • A group of colorful Garnet Hill tops is called a delight.
  • A group of flamingos is called a flamboyance.
  • A group of Garnet Hill shoes is called not enough shoes.
  • A group of bitterns is called a sedge.
  • A group of Garnet Hill flannel sheets is called a snooze.
  • A group of mosquitoes is called a scourge. (The mosquito is sometimes said to be the New Hampshire State Bird. In actuality that is the Purple Finch.)
  • A group of random, unmatched socks in the drawer is called inevitable.
  • A group of guinea fowl is called a confusion.
  • A group of Garnet Hill linen tops is called a summer.
  • No official word on what a group of groups is called. Probably a group.

Garnet Hill Cashmere: from the Highlands of Mongolia to You.

Mongolian Goats - How Garnet Hill Cashmere is Made
On a sunny day in July, deep in the grasslands of Inner Mongolia, the temperature tops 100ºF — yet thousands of goats are grazing happily on the open plain. You’d think otherwise given the unbearable heat, but then again, the capital is named Hohhot. Even worse, the winters are long, cold and dry, with temps often plummeting to 40ºF below; factor in the wind chill and frequent blizzards and by contrast, New England’s forecast begins to look like San Diego’s.

What good could possibly come from such extreme weather variations? Only the most sought-after cashmere in the world.

Mongolian Goats - How Garnet Hill Cashmere is Made
Once a year, these hardy cashmere goats evolve a protective, downy undercoat that keeps them cool in the summer and cozy all winter. By mid-spring, they’re ready to be combed (we can just hear their sighs now). Manual combing is the better method; it’s completely harmless and yields long, pure fibers that reduce pilling (shearing shortens the fibers and contains more of the coarse guard hair). The result is 4 ounces of raw cashmere per goat — enough for about ⅓ of a sweater — ready to be sorted, de-haired, washed, and eventually spun into soft pure Garnet Hill cashmere.
Considering it takes a year’s worth of fleece from four to six goats to make just one of our 2-ply cashmere sweaters, it deserves special care.
Cashmere Care Tips - How to Care for Cashmere Sweaters
More than half the herd would perish annually until local families of herders began caring for this special cashmere breed. Garnet Hill is honored to support their tradition since 2005.

Mongolian Goats - How Garnet Hill Cashmere is Made

Happy goats. It’s just one more reason to be delighted with Garnet Hill cashmere.

VIDEO: Our Cashmere,
as Seen on the Meredith Vieira Show


Recently, our Cashmere Hats, Gloves and Scarves were featured on the Meredith Vieira Show. We are so excited that our cozy winter accessories appeared in the “WHAT’S HOT NOW” segment of Meredith’s I’M OBSESSED: Holiday Edition. If you missed the show, take a peek at the clip.

The Garnet Hill gift assortment is in full swing. Check out the complete collection for more cashmere gifts and warm winter wears.

Bernice and Her Fleece

Here’s something fun for the kids — meet Bernice!

Bernice the Mongolian Goat
I am a goat.
I live in Mongolia.

I live far away – how far?
Holy Molya!

My name is Bernice.
I’m the one with the bangs.
The goats you see here,
are the rest of my gang.
Mongolian Goats
Danny the Mongolian Goat
The one with his eyes closed?
That’s my pal Danny.
We play hide and goat seek
‘til called by our nanny.

We’re not just mere goats,
you see, we’re cashmere.
The sweater you love,
it may come from here.

Is it softer than soft?
Is it warmer than warm?
You’re wearing the same
cashmere fleece that I’ve worn.

Each year in the spring,
the herdsmen will trim.
They’ll give me a haircut.
It tickles, by Jim!

My fleece does grow back
before winter, don’t worry.
I’m programmed for warmth –
I’m head-to-toe furry.

They comb out my fleece,
the fleece of Bernice,
and soon they spin yarns
as soft as you please.

Then they knit you a sweater –
you’ve never looked better!

When asked by your friends,
or your cousins, or niece,
“Where did you get it?
That oh-so-soft fleece?”

Just tell them this tale
of your new friend, Bernice.

Garnet Hill Heads to the Hamptons

Garnet Hill Store in Bridgehampton, NYThis year, we’re summering in the Hamptons! We’re opening our retail doors for the season in Long Island’s enchanting east-end enclave of Bridgehampton. The store will give Garnet Hill fans a touch-and-feel experience with our best products: rich bedding in soft linen, crisp cotton, and woven silks, plus cashmere robes, airy cotton fashions, distinctive accessories, and more.

Customers will be able to peruse Garnet Hill’s bedding and home decor, as well as favorites in sleepwear and apparel. The store will offer everything from the authentic European cotton flannel sheets that launched our company, to the full array of beautifully designed products that we’re known for today!

“We’ve put a lot of thought and care into our premiere store’s design and location. And Bridgehampton — with a charming downtown that is both low-key and a destination for home design resources — felt like a perfect fit for us,” says Claire Spofford, Garnet Hill president. “We think customers who know and love us will be excited to ‘meet’ us for the first time and we’ll be a pleasant surprise to new customers as well.”

Located at 2424 Main Street (also known as Montauk Highway) in the center of Bridgehampton’s downtown district, the interior of the 1,700 square foot store juxtaposes the honest simplicity of our New England roots with the comforts and casual glamour of the modern coastal lifestyle.

The official grand opening of the store will happen Saturday, June 27. We’d love to see you there!

It All Starts with Happy Goats

goat-featureOn a sunny day in July, deep in the grasslands of Inner Mongolia, the temperature tops 100ºF — yet thousands of goats are grazing happily on the open plain. You’d think otherwise given the unbearable heat, but then again, the capital is named Hohhot. Even worse, the winters are long, cold and dry, with temps often plummeting to 40ºF below; factor in the wind chill and frequent blizzards and by contrast, New England’s forecast begins to look like San Diego’s.

What good could possibly come from such extreme weather variations? Only the most sought-after cashmere in the world.

Once a year, these hardy cashmere goats evolve a protective, downy undercoat that keeps them cool in the summer and cozy all winter. By mid-spring, they’re ready to be combed (we can just hear their sighs now). Manual combing is the better method; it’s completely harmless and yields long, pure fibers that reduce pilling (shearing shortens the fibers and contains more of the coarse guard hair). The result is 4 ounces of raw cashmere per goat — enough for about ⅓ of a sweater — ready to be sorted, de-haired, washed, and eventually spun into soft pure Garnet Hill cashmere.

Considering it takes a year’s worth of fleece from four to six goats to make just one of our 2-ply cashmere sweaters, it deserves special care. Three simple tips will keep your cashmere looking its best for years:

  1. Hand-dip in cold water without detergent; air dry
  2. Store on a dedicated shelf next to a glass of water to maintain humidity
  3. Avoid friction (rubbing, wringing, drying with other garments); it shortens the
    fibers which leads to pilling

 

Happy goats. It’s just one more reason to be delighted with Garnet Hill cashmere.