Our Story: The Beginning of Snug Living
After our wedding in 1996, we bought a wooden cottage in Sweden (called a “stuga” in Swedish). Living in a stuga is the Swedish dream of escaping to a small house in or near the forest beside a lake. By doing so, we experienced living close to nature, and relaxing outdoors or in front of an open fire.
The enjoyment of these simple moments at home in the countryside made us appreciate the benefits of this type of living. I (Bill) had a busy life teaching business subjects at university; Kate studied for a degree in media & communication. We didn’t know then that in Denmark this sort of lifestyle was called “Hygge”, and that one day this way of living would become a trend in Europe and the core of our business.
We also lived and worked in other countries, Spain, Australia, the Czech Republic (Kate’s homeland), and the UK (Bill’s homeland). In each case, we always created opportunities to enjoy “snug living.”
In 2013, while living in rural Scotland, I (Bill) decided to launch an online company selling gifts for snug living. I named the company Snugbe Ltd and registered the brand name Snugbe. I derived this name from the term “Be Snug” (in reverse).
Kate joined me in the business in 2014. We decided to sell our own-brand (snugbe) of physical products mainly online. This home-based business was the vehicle for supporting the personal lifestyle which embraced our values.
We stared out by selling a travel pillow which we sourced in the UK. We wanted to help people to “be snug” while travelling by plane, train, coach, or car. We soon added related travel products and kitchen products which we sourced in China. However, after a few “product quality issues” with the products we sourced from China, we decided to focus on sourcing products made only in Europe. We found a few manufacturers in Europe who would make and private-label high-quality products for “snug living” for us.
Though “hygge” is now a popular expression for what we have called “snug living” we are glad that more people are becoming inspired by the trend to re-connect with the simple joys of everyday living. We are also grateful for that modern technology has made it possible for us to run our lifestyle business while feeling truly cosy and snug!
We wish you many snug experiences in your life and we would love to contribute to them with our ideas and snug living gifts!
Kate & Bill Barbour