Cottage décor is quite popular with its light and airy feel and casual look. This distinctive style can have several variations including beach cottage, country cottage, French cottage and more, making it a fun way to decorate any kitchen. Many are bringing it to the modern day realm of shabby chic with some vintage appeal, and using second hand and “farmy” style furniture to get the look, yet it is still cottage.
Though today’s cottage look can combine several styles, there are still some common denominators that keep the décor in sync.
Whitewash cabinets or paint with white lacquer
This is something of a trademark look with cottage style. It keeps a kitchen bright and cheery without that formal feel. This makes it an inviting and friendly room.
Use light colors
Accents and furniture in light and near-pastels of blue and pink are quite popular for this style, though yellows and greens are an added touch seen less often. Anything you would want color on can be mated in the lighter tones with the whitewash. Other colors will still do in small amounts, though keeping it on the pastel-ish side for the larger part will stay with the airy open feel of cottage style.
Use floral and/or striped fabrics when used
Though fabric isn’t always necessary with kitchen furniture, some do like it. Upholstering kitchen chairs with floral patterns gives something of a romantic touch, whereas striped fabrics in more bold colors add some interesting contrast. Pink cabbage roses with a light colored background are commonly found with this décor. This fabric on kitchen chairs can pair well with green stripes on a table cloth, and vice versa. Although other patterns can still be used, the main idea is to still keep the basic look and colors in alignment with the color scheme, and with the rest of the house.
Touches of dramatic colors
For a little bit of drama to add spark to your kitchen, bold colors like red, dark green, and sometimes deep blue can be lightly splashed around the room with accessories such as small tables, candleholders, dishes, clocks, and even chandeliers if it’s not too overbearing.
Wicker and wood furniture and accessories
White wicker and white wood are both widely used in cottage décor. Wicker chairs as well as shelving can be used, or wicker baskets and other decorative pieces. White wood is most often used for larger pieces of furniture in this area of the home, and is sometimes preferred with a weathered look that can easily be found with second hand furniture.
Scalloped valances in a pattern that aligns with the rest of the room (often floral) will work well for this style. Lace is another popular fabric for cottage looks that stays with the light and airy feel, though the type of curtain chosen will depend upon which type of cottage appeal you are after. Plain, washed out white will also do in some instances.
Victorian or vintage style lamp shades or lighting
Victorian and some vintage lamps blend nicely with this décor, and are often used in it. These will sometimes have shades covered with lace, beads, and/or fabric. Though not many have lamps in the kitchen, hanging lights can also utilize these types of shades.This gives a unique touch to the kitchen as long as it is done without overpowering it. This is one of the areas where the above mentioned dramatic touches in color are nicely integrated.
Beach themes with shells and sea colors
Another form of cottage decorating integrates the beach theme. For this type of cottage look, the open air feel of the beach is the sought after appeal. Glass jars filled with sand and seashells can be used as decorative pieces, along with things like pieces made from beach-worn glass and nautical decor that works within the color scheme. Though this is somewhat different from the garden or country look, the colors are generally similar with white as the mainstay alongside blues, pinks and greens in somewhat paler shades.
Add a few distressed decorative pieces
This can be wall hangings, knick knacks, or other pieces of interest. Many stores are selling new items with this distressed look, or these can be found second hand nearly anywhere. The distressed look also allows for easy maintenance and upkeep.
Overall, keep things basic
Cottage décor is generally rather basic in its impression. The ornately decorated fabrics and lighting are often the most ornately detailed items in the room. The furniture can be rather plain, without a lot of elaborate or fancy detail, and with only a very few accent pieces here and there to dress it up. The general emphasis is on the look, and not the expense. Things like dishes can add a dash of color and style as well as anything.