June 17, 2013

Design Topic: Cottage Style – Comfortable, Cozy… And Chic

Dover-Cottage

Cottage Style is not only a design trend, it’s also a frame of mind. Day after day, we’re connected to smart phones, iPads, and computers. We sit on ergonomic, highly-styled office chairs at work or sleek automobiles with tons of gadgets as we drive from appointment to appointment. Life is hectic and we feel rushed during our daily chores.

Cottage style allows us the opportunity to turn off the world at home, sit back and relax in a big, comfortable, cozy sofa, surrounded by furniture weathered through years of love among colors that are easy on the eyes, such as white, ivory, cream, and pale yellow. Some walls might be accented with lovely beadboard and pegs to hang a light jacket or summery hat.

Cottage style is not kitsch; rather it’s a relaxed mood that mixes repurposed furniture, and large, open, airy spaces that create the feel of a cozy atmosphere with comfortable nooks and crannies for sitting and reading a book with paper pages!

People looking for a cottage atmosphere often open up their kitchen/living/dining space for the modern airiness we crave, and they design it with the modernity of granite countertops juxtaposed by the vintage feel of antique cabinetry in the kitchen, weathered hutches in the dining area counterpointed by a simple but effortlessly comfortable dining area, and a living space that includes big, cozy armchairs and sofas with soft touches of light and airy throws to snuggle up with after a long day.

Bathrooms sometimes include glass-front linen cabinets that may have once been used in a pharmacy, gently-footed tubs with modern accoutrements and shiny white and black tiles. Bedrooms are often decorated with crisp, white linens, fluffy, down-filled duvets and a classic chandelier hanging over the bed. An old, gently weathered hutch might be used for a modern entertainment system that any audiophile would be proud to own.

To me, cottage style has remained so popular because of the natural instinct of its design that lets you put your feet up, relax and forget about the stress of our day-to-day connectedness to hardware. Cottage style is the “softwear” we crave in our lives and in our homes.

The best is yet to come,
Beth Orr

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