Love is always a great message to spread,
And Valentine’s Day gives us the perfect excuse. It means even more in the dark winter months when we can use all the cheer we can get.
Spring might be just around the corner but here in the mountains there’s still snow on the ground,with more on the way, making our homes much more than simple shelter; they become our sanctuaries, a place to feel safe and warm.
In the last couple of years (and particularly in the winter months), I’m sure you’ve come across a certain word: Hygge. But what does hygge mean exactly? And how do you say it?
Pronounced “hoo-ga,” this Danish concept cannot be translated to one single word but encompasses a feeling of cozy contentment and well-being through enjoying the simple things in life.
If you’ve ever enjoyed reading a book beside a fire on a snowy Sunday or sipping a cup of hot cocoa, cuddled beneath a soft, knitted throw, you’ve experienced hygge without even knowing it.
Valentine’s Day is a wonderful opportunity to share your heart (and hygge), with the special people in your life, including the one’s (grown and small, two-legged or four), who share your home. With that in mind, how about also giving your home a little extra love this Valentine’s Day?
Hygge also conjures up images of rustic mountain cabins and lodges, romantic places faraway from the everyday, but in all honesty it’s not that difficult to bring that energy into your existing living space with just a few tweaks, and perhaps a new loveseat to boot!
According to a recent article in the Guardian, Loveseats have become enormously popular in the past few years with sales rocketing. A loveseat is a small sofa, on which you can stretch out ,or if you’re feeling romantic, two people can snuggle up together.
But Valentine’s Day aside, the popularity of the loveseat isn’t, in fact, down to love, it’s down to space. and an increasing trend for smaller homes resulting in thousands more being built each year. This includes cabins like the ones we dream of in winter.
Earlier this week I visited Mary Domito at her brand new store, Mattress Mary’s Mountain Lifestyle. Mary understands better than anyone in town, the need for affordable and comfortable furniture that fits our lifestyle here in Taos.
Her flagship store (Taos Lifestyle) has been a huge success ever since she first opened her doors, after moving here from the Bay Area. She has since opened another store in Alamosa, and a higher end, bedding boutique in Santa Fe, both of which have been equally successful.
But Mary’s heart is here in Taos, and when the old Greystone Furniture building became available, she jumped on the opportunity to open an entry-level furniture outlet, aimed at young couples starting out in a new home, or second home owners who don’t want to break the bank, but desire comfort in their homes away from home.
It’s also the perfect spot to shop if you are thinking about furnishing a rental or Airbnb.
With its Mountain lodgy, rustic theme, Mary is betting on the hygge factor as well as the fact that this decorative style suits both our vernacular and relaxed way of living. From log cabin-esque bed frames, to dining sets, Mary’s covered all the bases with furnishings both appealing, affordable, and most importantly, well made. She has promoted her long time employee, Kim Van Deman to Manager and hired May Glass (who is an Interior Designer) to work in the new store.
“I couldn’t be happier,” Mary told me. “Both of these women have so much retail experience and May brings her decorative expertise and incredible taste to the mix as well.”
Decorative services are available free with purchase. A win win for all!
And what would a Mattress Mary store be without beds? Well of course there’s a great selection here as well.
“For example, while the flagship store carries Simmons (and other brands besides), we’ll have Sealy, and other budget options,” Kim explained.
As for Mary, these days she’s pretty mach back and forth between the stores.
“I’m becoming a good friend of the middle lane,” she quipped.
Mary’s also a major music lover and sometime promoter whose annual Dog Day events to benefit the Stray Hearts Animal Shelter, raise thousands of dollars, hired Taos singer-songwriter, Max Gomez to write a new jingle for Mountain Lifestyle.
Max has been including this little ditty in his set of late, to much applause. Both he and Mary are practically household names in Taos. In fact, Mary’s face smiling down from huge billboards at either end of town, is part of our welcoming committee, along with the Welcome to Taos signs and directions to the Visitor’s Center!
While we chatted, a young man came in and May went to assist him. After awhile she returned to where we were sitting in Kim’s open, rustic office space (built by Mary’s husband, Mark), and mentioned he was interested in a loveseat that was part of a set. He didn’t want the sofa.
“Let him have it,” Mary said,”we can order another and anyway,the sofa might sell on its own – the price is so good!”
Was it about space or love? We may not ever know, but when I left, he was calling his girlfriend to let her know he’d found something both aesthetically appealing, comfortable and most importantly, affordable.
So this Valentine’s Day hygge and love-spreading may go hand in hand: As the saying goes, “Home is where the heart is,” and a love-filled, home is a very happy place to be.
Mattress Mary’s Taos Mountain Lifestyle is located at: 815 Paseo Del Pueblo Sur, Taos, NM 87571
For more on Mary’s Taos Lifestyle stores, please visit the sites linked below.
Photographs of Mary Domito in Hygge ready and very hip animal print onesy, taken by Bill Curry.
Other images stock files