Conscious by Chloé

Chloé Lepeltier - Conscious By Chloé

Bonjour & Welcome! Conscious by Chloé is a Sustainable Lifestyle Blog focusing on Zero Waste, Slow Living, and Ethical Fashion.

Hygge - The Danish & Norwegian Art of Coziness & Conviviality

Hygge at Home with Christine Liu and her Sustainable Home Book by Conscious by Chloé

What's Hygge?

The word Hygge (pronounced "hoo-gah") appeared in written Danish for the first time in the early 1800s, but the word is actually Norwegian in origin. It describes a universal feeling of being warm, safe, comforted, and sheltered — an experience of belonging to the moment and to each other.

Hygge has been called everything from "the art of creating intimacy", "coziness of the soul", and "the absence of annoyance", to "taking pleasure from the presence of soothing things", "cozy togetherness" and "cocoa by candlelight".

Hygge is about an atmosphere and an experience, rather than about things. It is about being with the people we love. A feeling of home. A feeling that we are safe, that we are shielded from the world and allow ourselves to let our guard down.

Hygge is the antidote to the cold winter, the rainy days, and the duvet of darkness.

Hygge is about feeling safe. Hence, hygge is an indication that you trust the ones you are with and where you are.

When life gets hectic, work grows stressful, and the days fly by, hygge allows you to unplug and tune in.

Hygge at Home with Christine Liu and her Sustainable Home Book by Conscious by Chloé

The Hygge Manifesto by Meick Wiking

  • ATMOSPHERE - Turn down the lights.
  • PRESENCE - Be here now. Turn off the phones.
  • PLEASURE - Coffee, chocolate, cookies, cakes, candy. Gimme! Gimme! Gimme!
  • EQUALITY - "We" over "me". Share the tasks and the airtime.
  • GRATITUDE - Take it in. This might be as good as it gets.
  • HARMONY - It’s not a competition. We already like you. There is no need to brag about your achievements.
  • COMFORT - Get comfy. Take a break. It’s all about relaxation.
  • TRUCE - No drama. Let’s discuss politics another day.
  • TOGETHERNESS - Build relationships and narratives. "Do you remember the time we . . . ?"
  • SHELTER - This is your tribe. This is a place of peace and security.

Hygge at Home with Christine Liu and her Sustainable Home Book by Conscious by Chloé

Hygge at Home

Here's my way of making my home a little more hyggeligt:

  • A warm cup of tea

When I last de-cluttered my kitchen, I cleared a whole deep drawer and converted it to a coffee/tea/matcha brewing station. All my ingredients and handmade ceramic cups are in the same place. It makes me happy every time I open it!

  • Heavy blankets

There's a basket next to my couch where I keep a collection of warm and soft blankets. Whether I'm reading a book by myself or watching a movie with Octave, I reach into the basket and add a little warmth and coziness to any activity!

  • Scented Candles

Nothing beats candlelight to make any gloomy day and dark room feel warm and welcoming. I made a bunch of soy candles last year and will definitely try new scents pretty soon.

  • Delicious Cake

Baking is such a great colder days activity. It warms both your home and your belly.

  • Good time with good friends

It's so easy to retreat into your home and stop going out when the days get cold and wet. The best way to beat the gloom is to have friends over and share a great moment together.

Hygge at Home with Christine Liu and her Sustainable Home Book by Conscious by Chloé

Hygge at Work

Hygge is not reserved to your home, which means you can apply those principles to your workplace.

  • Decorate your workstation, make it more homey and comfortable

  • Schedule a potluck

  • Bring cake

  • Organize a meditation session/yoga class

  • Grow plants or herbs

Hygge at Home with Christine Liu and her Sustainable Home Book by Conscious by Chloé

A Hygge Reading List

Last winter, I borrowed these 3 books about hygge from the library and loved every one of them:

Now if you've learnt enough about hygge and actually want to experience it, here are my favorite "afternoon under the covers with a warm cup of tea" books:

My friend Christine sent me her book and I've been loving it. Taking inventory oh what's in your home, making it simpler, more organized, healthier is one of my favorite past-times. It is a great reminder that we can make a lot with what we already own. Thank you Christine for this thoughtful gift and congratulations on a beautiful work!

A beautiful book about learning to embrace the imperfect and entertain with thoughtfulness and ease. PS: The book in itself is so beautiful with its Japanese binding!

  • I usually do not read those kinds of books, but I bet epic sagas or winter adventures or Nordic tales would be very hyggeligt.

For more book recommendations, you can check out my reading list.

Hygge at Home with Christine Liu and her Sustainable Home Book by Conscious by Chloé

Let me know in the comments below whether you have fall rituals and what's your favorite way to make your home feel cozier in the fall!

Foraged Wreath DIY

Foraged Wreath DIY by Conscious by Chloé

On our way back from Southern California, we stopped on the side of the road for lunch and I took this opportunity to get the supplies I needed for a project I had in mind.

Inspired by Max Turk's creations, I had been meaning to give wreath making a try.

So while Octave was preparing lunch, I grabbed a knife and a bag and went for a stroll to forage. I had no idea about how much greenery I would need and pretty much eyeballed it. My advice: take more than what you think you'll need. A wreath can never be too crowded, and, worst case scenario, you'll have enough supplies to make a second one and give it to a friend or neighbor!

Foraged Wreath DIY by Conscious by Chloé

Back home, I unwrapped my bounty and tried a couple designs on the floor of the living room.

Some people create the wreath by making a circle of branches. Others like to use wire to secure the strands around the wreath. I chose the easy route and found frames for 75 cents each at SCRAP, my local second-hand artist's supplies store and decided to just use some cotton thread to wrap the straw around the frame.

The end result looks nothing like what I had in mind, but I'm happy about where trial and error took me.

Foraged Wreath DIY by Conscious by Chloé

Foraged Wreath DIY by Conscious by Chloé

Foraged Wreath DIY by Conscious by Chloé

Foraged Wreath DIY by Conscious by Chloé


Wreaths are a great way to decorate your home on a budget at any given season. They're common for the end of the year celebrations but can be created at any time of the year to bring the look and smell of nature into your home!

Active time: 2 hours
Total time: 2 hours



  • Scissors


  1. Forage seasonal greens.
  2. Arrange your greens on a flat surface and test various patterns.
  3. Tie a knot around the frame.
  4. Roll the thread around the greens all around the frame to create a base.
  5. Slip bits and pieces to cover the thread and create a pattern.
  6. Hang your wreath and take a step back.
  7. Add more greenery to create balance.
  8. Enjoy the view and the smell of your creation as long as you deem necessary.


For this wreath, I foraged crested wheatgrass, sagebrush, and rabbitbrush in Southern Oregon. But any kind of greenery will do. Go for a hike and work with what nature offers you. The secret is to have some thicker material for the base (to cover the frame) and tons of little bits (dried berries, pine cones) to use as ornaments). After you take your wreath down at the end of the season, compost the greenery, reuse the thread, and store the frame for the next season.

Foraged Wreath DIY by Conscious by Chloé

Foraged Wreath DIY by Conscious by Chloé

Foraged Wreath DIY by Conscious by Chloé

Have you ever made your own wreath? What did you use? I want to see pictures (tag me on social media so I can see them)!

Minimalist Bathroom Essentials

Minimalist Bathroom Essentials by Conscious by Chloé

After a pretty thorough spring cleaning session, I moved stuff around, switched up art and decor and I'm now feeling like we're ready to take you on a house tour.

For some reason, I decided to start the tour with the bathroom. It makes sense since it's the place where it all started, and by that I mean that my journey to a simpler, greener and happier life debuted in my bathroom cabinet.

As soon as I discovered the Think Dirty App, I got rid of 100% of the products I used to put on my skin, i.e. I finished them and never bought them again.

To me, a bathroom needs to look and feel clean. It's the place where my morning routine starts so I like it to be light, to smell good and to be functional (how many times have I knocked perfume bottles down because my eyes weren't quite open early in the morning?).

We're renting our house, and we're on a budget, so there's not much that we can do. I could switch this wall sconce and repaint the dark cabinets, but let's be honest, I'd rather put my money elsewhere.

While we're dreaming of owning a house some day, we just decided to make it do.

Minimalist Bathroom Essentials by Conscious by Chloé


Our bathroom linen happens to be pretty neutral - I've had these striped towels for years and bought white ones back when were planning to rent our SoCal photo studio as an artsy Airbnb retreat - and I'm not mad about it. Of course I'd love it all to be natural and organic but I'll wait until it's time to replace it.

I regret this shower curtain so much! There was already a white plastic liner when we moved in. We kept it for a while but after having to repair it numerous time (the holes were not reinforced) I gave up and replaced it in a rush the day before my parents came for an extended stay at our place. I got a clear liner and the less-than-original Ikea shower curtain (you know the one I mean, with the black shower head and water droplets on a white background). Anyways, after a while I just removed the curtain and only kept the transparent liner. It lets the light in (as I almost always keep it closed) but requires a lot of maintenance (water + soap = yuck!). A friend of mine told me she has a plain linen shower curtain and tosses it in her weekly laundry, no big deal. If you have any recommendations for non-plastic/non-toxic options, I'm all ears! Otherwise, I'll opt for a plain organic linen shower curtain, or this amazing US made canvas one, some day...

As for the bath rug, no comment, Octave picked one up at Ikea back when we lived in SoCal, it's black and white and coordinated with our grey carpet (yes, carpet!). I'd love a fun one, or a graphic one, or just a plain natural colored one.

Minimalist Bathroom Essentials by Conscious by Chloé


Accessory-wise, I've had my hair brush for a long time and just drilled a hole in it so I could hang it on the hooks (which are hanged super low, I know the previous owners had young children, so that makes sense).

My trusted body brush is also displayed here, to remind me to use it.

The ugly and bulky electronics (hair dryer, epilator/trimmer/razor) are hidden in the canvas bag (which was originally a shoe duster bag).

In the shower, I like to use an exfoliating wash cloth to get rid of dead skin.

We started using bamboo toothbrushes 3 years ago. I recently switched to an electric toothbrush after having been reprimanded by my dentist at my 2 last annual check-ups (manual brushing seems to be too harsh for my gums, I remain perplex).

I reused a nut butter glass container to store our toothpaste (DIY coming soon) and made the toothbrush holder at a ceramics class.

I found some vintage glass containers at the Salvation Army for our body soap (that we shop in bulk) and we use simple hand pumps for our hand soap and my shampoo (that we buy in bulk too). We also have a spray bottle for apple cider vinegar that I use to rinse my hair and that Octave sometimes uses to wash his hair (he's been washing his hair with water only for at least 2 years, since I threw away his last empty bottle of super chemical anti-dandruff shampoo).

I use another spray bottle for our lavender air deodorizer (the toilet is not pictured here). Oh and we got this toilet brush that we store in a plain white Ikea plant pot.

Our bathroom also features an ugly dark cabinet above the toilet. Inside, we keep our cosmetics: Octave's electric beard trimmer, his beard and hair balm (DIY coming soon), my deodorant & scented rollers, our contact lenses and solutions (we only wear them on special occasions like when he's filming and when we go swimming, snowboarding or mountain biking), a mug containing tweezers, nail clippers and 2 hair ties that I use when I shower and don't want to wet my hair, and 2 cute wooden ear picks that Octave's aunt gave him as a present. On top of this cabinet lives our water flosser and 2 metal boxes. I keep my make-up in one and hair accessories in the other (I cut my own hair & regularly trim my bangs).

Minimalist Bathroom Essentials by Conscious by Chloé

That's it for our minimalist bathroom tour! I hope you liked it. I compiled below links to most of the items that we use on a daily basis. You can also find more inspiration in my shop or on this wish list that I update pretty regularly. I hope you'll find them useful!


Natural and organic fabrics are on top of my list.


Wood, glass and metal are not only durable but also beautiful!

This was the first time I hanged eucalyptus in my shower. I read somewhere that it's the ultimate spa experience (the warm water makes the leaves release their refreshing scent). As I was stopping by a friend's shop, I saw that her eucalyptus branches were on sale, so I did not think twice. It was a fun new experiment. Have you ever tried it? What are your favorite bath rituals? I'd love to her them!

Photographs by Octave Zangs for Conscious by Chloé.

This post is not sponsored but when you shop via some of the links above I may make a small commission from a sale. Thanks for supporting the brands that support Conscious by Chloé!

Hairpin Leg Bench DIY

Hairpin Leg Bench DIY by Conscious by Chloé

Last week-end was meant to take place a whole different way.

We had a whole road trip planned to the Northwest Overland Rally. But on the way there, Charlie (Octave's Land Cruiser) got a mechanical problem. So we drove back home to fix it.

I guess I must have had a premonition because I hadn't deleted all the events taking place in Portland on that week-end from my calendar. So I looked at the bright side and made the most of these 2 days in the city.

As some of you might have seen on Snapchat, I woke up early on Saturday morning for an outdoor yoga session followed by a (free) açai bowl for the one year anniversary of Carioca Bowls.

Later, I walked to the Woodlawn Farmers Market, which had reopened while I was in Europe, to get a little mint starter for my garden and some blueberries to snack on during the day.

After that, I rushed to one of my favorite shops in Portland, Johan, for its moving sale and splurged on ceramics. I also scored the vintage silk shirt I'm wearing on the picture and an amazing bodycon dress, made in the USA!

Ceramic cup found at Johan by Conscious by Chloé

Then I checked my phone and realized I had forgotten about the book launch of Becoming Minimalist's Joshua Becker. I was happy to see some friendly faces from the Portland Minimalists Group and get to meet Minimalist Baker Dana Shultz who was here on stage with Joshua.

Later in the day, I dragged Octave to Salvage Works to get some wood for a project I had in mind, and the main subject of today's article: a hairpin leg bench.

Hairpin Leg Bench DIY by Conscious by Chloé

So here's our little tutorial:


A hairpin leg bench is a pretty easy and inexpensive project that will immediately add style to any room in your home.

Active time: 1 hr
Total time: 2 hrs



  • Hand file
  • Orbital sander + sandpaper
  • Drill
  • Screws


  1. Carve the edges.
    We used the hand file and finished with 60 grit sandpaper.
  2. Sand the wood.
    We used the orbital sander starting with 60, then 160 and finally 220 grit.
  3. Seal the wood.
    We used a polycrylic spray we already had from a previous outdoor sign project. We sprayed 1 coat and sanded after.
  4. Attach the legs.
    We more or less eyeballed the leg placement, but you can definitely measure it properly, and even clamp the legs and flip the bench over to see how it will look.

You can try different ways to seal the wood. We used what we had on hand, but wood sealer and Danish oil may be better options.

Hairpin Leg Bench DIY by Conscious by Chloé

I love the idea of making something new out of something old. Of course, the project is not 100% made our of reused material, but I'm glad we decided to go to a local shop rather than the usual hardware store. This quick DIY, which happen on the very same week-end Rachel made hers definitely gave me more DIY envy.

What about you? What was your week-end like? Lazy? Productive? This one was definitely on the active side but I promise it's not always as busy or inspired. But my Pinterest inspiration boards are here, in case my hands are itching.