All About Cottagecore

All About Cottagecore

Interior Design
Decoration and Design
By Mateos Glen Hayes June 03, 2022

In these complex times, we all pine for something simpler. Nostalgia is a powerful force and it goes some way to explaining the sheer popularity of design styles like cottagecore. Of course, that isn’t the only reason that this iconic style has gained such popularity on the likes of Instagram and TikTok. In a world where everything can be quickly copied and infinitely replicated, there is a real hunger for an aesthetic that is somehow original or outside the mainstream.

The cottagecore style is unique in that respect because it remains an unconventional-looking design style even as it has gained increasing widespread appeal in many different communities and countries. Alas, you may have never heard of this design style, and if so never fear. We're going to get down to business and talk about what the cottagecore style is, what distinguishes it as a style of design, and how you can bring this aesthetic into your home if that sounds cool to you. 

What is Cottagecore?

The cottagecore style comes from European nobility.

The cottagecore style comes from European nobility.

In its most essential form, the cottagecore style is about rustic simplicity, generous comfort, personal freedom, and hardy self-reliance. It is something of a romantic design style in that sense that emphasizes cozy spaces that have rustic farmhouse detailing and use predominantly natural materials like wood and natural stone. Unlike something minimalist like the Scandi style, however, the cottagecore style is meant to be homier and down to earth, therefore making for a more characterful aesthetic that exudes warmth from every facet.

Despite its relatively humble appearance the design style actually has some pretty glitzy origins, coming to us from the country homes of European nobility who sought to make their abodes in the country more simple and relaxing. After fading into relative obscurity with the advent of industrialization and mass-produced homes, the style has resurfaced as an aesthetic subculture thanks to the internet. 

Defining Features of Cottagecore

Natural materials are key to cottagecore.

Natural materials are key to cottagecore.

It is quite possible that you have seen a cottagecore design without even knowing it. Floral prints, mostly natural materials, beautiful indoor plants, and interiors textured with classic wallpapers and a rustic feel are all dead giveaways of the style. Generally speaking, a cottagecore home will give off certain vibes. It will be filled with warmth, and ample natural light, and will emphasize a sense of self-reliance.

So for example a cottagecore home could have things such as dried herbs, a small spice garden, or a wicker foraging basket on the porch allowing you to go without getting these things at the grocery store. Cottagecore homes are also typically filled with generous comfy seating, vintage decor, rustic wooden furniture, strategically placed potted plants, and generally avoid coming off as garnish. 

The Cottagecore Lifestyle

Cottagecore is about getting back in touch with nature.

Cottagecore is about getting back in touch with nature.

The cottagecore style is meant to represent a distinct lifestyle as well as a distinct look. It is basically meant to center self-reliance and simplicity as two of the most important aspects of your life. The point of the cottagecore lifestyle is to be independent by making things yourself as much as possible and rejecting the mass-produced consumer lifestyle that we are encouraged to live.

So for example instead of buying new decor or furniture when the time comes, simply repurpose something old rather than throw it out. In other words, embrace living with used refurbished stuff and not always replacing it with the new. This combined with embracing interior greenery means coming closer to nature and leading a happier, greener, and less complicated life. 

How to Make Your House Cottagecore

Now that you know the cottagecore style in the broad strokes, it’s time to get down to brass tacks and talk about integrating the cottagecore look into your home. There are a few avenues by which this can be achieved and ideally you want to have a little bit of several elements to really capture the wholesome look of this design style. As you go along be sure to keep the spirit of the entire aesthetic in mind so that you can stay on track with the conversion process. With that said, here are a few things to focus on. 

Vintage Furniture (that is soft furnishings) 

This one is something of a no-brainer. If you want a rustic farmhouse look there are few better ways to set the right tone than with some vintage furniture that has that distinctive lived-in look. Antique furniture, especially stuff with a french influence or country look is going to be the best fit and is typically going to be the centerpiece of any cottagecore design.

It’s an essential element of the look and as such you want to make sure you get stuff that is both classy and has that old-world charm. Don’t worry about any light scuffs or faded fabric, all of that is part of the look too since cottagecore style is nothing if not quintessentially eclectic. After all, what better way to avoid conformity than with the randomness of everyday wear?

Cottagecore is a very textured design style.

Cottagecore is a very textured design style.

Nothing Synthetic (Natural Materials)

Another essential is natural materials, meaning wood, wicker, hemp, natural stone, and others. This is another reason why you want to seek out vintage furniture since it is usually made of prominent wooden frames made from sturdy mahogany or oak. This makes for a very earthy and textured feel, especially when used in concert with natural fabrics and complemented with details such as potted plants and natural fabrics.   

The Lived-In Look 

In other words, you don’t want things to be shiny and new. Signs of life and everyday use give a cottagecore space character and uniqueness, and that’s exactly what we want. Of course, we don’t recommend too much clutter, but a small amount in the form of books on display, simple knick-knacks, and other eclectic decor items will add texture and depth to the space and emphasize coziness without sacrificing utility. A lived-in look means that every room has a story to tell, and every room has its own cool quirks and unique features. 

Experiment With Textures 

The word texture has been mentioned a few times already, and that’s with good reason. It is another essential part of the cottagecore ensemble, and it comes in many forms, from the earthy tones of lived-in vintage furniture to the lace cloth quilted throw pillows and crushed velvet chairs. This unusual combo of different materials and natural hues makes for a space that feels like a cozy nook full of warmth thanks to the variety of textures present. This is in complete opposition to the monochromatic color schemes and straight lines of many newer interior designs, setting your home apart in a good way.  

Cottagecore Style Decor

Keep things eclectic with a variety of decorative items.

Keep things eclectic with a variety of decorative items.

Decor is another crucial element of reproducing the entire look and feel that is so central to the cottagecore design. In keeping with the vintage furniture, vintage decorative items are also a good choice here, including vintage lamps, antique jugs for flowers, candelabras, whimsical items such as old-looking glasses, etc. Basically, the decor is variable and depends a lot on your imagination, so let it run wild for the best results. This will seem unusual at first but it can produce some very pretty rooms with excellent decor. 

Is Cottagecore Style Still Popular in 2022?

Cottagecore continues to grow in popularity.

Cottagecore continues to grow in popularity.

In sum, yes the cottage house style is still super popular in 2022 and it will remain so for the foreseeable future as more and more people get into it. If you want to try something new and are getting into the home improvement game we recommend considering this style because at the end of the day there are few others that come close to reproducing the same unique effect. Cottagecore style is fun, unrestrained, and designed for whimsy, and we can all use some more of that in our lives.

Written by
Mateos Glen Hayes

Written by Mateos Glen Hayes