Home Decor’: 22 Fresh, Frugal Cottage Ideas


22 affordable ideas that add up to sweet cottage style….

All About the Windows

blue room with gingham sofa

1. Simple window treatments ensure ample light. Any lightweight fabric will do. Find tab-top panels for less than $20 at Target or Bed Bath & Beyond. Or simply hem all raw fabric-by-the-yard edges and use clip-style curtain rings over rods for an easy project.

Cozy Slipcovers

slipcovered sofas with floral pillows

2. Slipcovers reflect the easy-living attitude that’s crucial to cottage style. Sewn from affordable cotton or canvas, most slipcovers easily slip off and into the wash.

Simple Accessories

perfume bottles

3. Vases look charming with or without flowers. These antique perfume bottles are perfect for a blossom or two. Select flowers that might grow in the cottage garden, such as lilacs, roses, and daisies.

Cozy Details

iron bed with star quilt

4. Vintage fabrics might seem pricey, but consider their design punch. A curtain panel should yield enough fabric for three 20-inch-square pillows. Shop for damaged or stained pieces that can be cut to make a pillow top; add new coordinating fabric on the back.

Charming Walls

distressed fireplace and beaded board walls

5. Beaded board creates cottage style faster than any other element. Wood paneling called Ply-Bead from Georgia Pacific looks like beaded board, but it’s really a 4×8-foot sheet paneling with tongue-and-groove edges. At about $19 a sheet, it offers a lower-cost option than traditional beaded board at $8 for a piece 8 inches wide and 8 feet long.

Simple Surfaces

neutral living room with distressed coffee table

6. Worn paint suits cottage furniture. For a durable finish, use Benjamin Moore’s Low Lustre Waterborne Satin Impervo. For a matte finish, use low-luster milk paint. Buy directly from http://www.milkpaint.com.

Classic Floors

eclectic living room with pink chair and hanging bicycle

7. Hardwood floors offer warm wood tones and an easy-care surface that looks good with soft fabrics and subdued color schemes. Leave the floors bare in summer and add rugs in winter.

Quaint Fence

wood side table with lamps

8. Lattice adds cottage charm to walls and more. For a lattice panel that reflects the garden, buy ready-made panels at a home center. Add trim to top and bottom to encase the panel.

Seaside Charm

jar of shells

9. Shells gathered during a walk on the beach and displayed in clear glass containers bring the beach home. Sharing the things you love creates personal style.

Casual Dining

dining room with wood floors and white walls

10. Romantic chandeliers add charm to any room. You can add paint, crystals, and lampshades to an existing dining room light fixture. Or check out home centers for new chandeliers with lots of style for less than $100.

Pretty Fabrics

bedroom with pink and brown linens, brown leather chair

11. Printed fabrics in soft colors cozy up any bedroom. Lots of pillows and a ruffly bedskirt give this bed a cottage style boost.

Feminine Curves

neutral bedroom with good nite letters

12. Feminine curves on the rustic iron bed frame suit the romantic nature of cottage decorating. Look for antique pieces of furniture at garage sales or thrift stores to get the look for less.

Show Off in Style

makeup brushes on windowsill

13. Collections are key to cottage style, but the freshest way to show them off is with restraint. A windowsill is the perfect place to display these antique lather brushes.

Natural Fibers

white bathroom with baskets on shelves

14. Baskets give a room casual style. Keep bathroom shelves organized by storing extra towels and powder room supplies inside matching baskets.

Charming Light

lamp with keys hanging from it

15. Style a lampshade with buttons and trim. It takes only a little craft glue or self-stick lampshade to create this look. Take it a step further and hang unique trinkets, like these keys, from the edge of the shade.

The Small Things

white pillow with buttons

16. Details, such as pretty ribbon and buttons on pillows sweeten the look. Keep it simple and monochromatic for fresh cottage style.

Bring the Outside In

foyer with black wicker table

17. Wicker brings the feel of the porch inside. For a new twist, cover the piece with black spray paint. It’s a chic alternative to traditional white.

Make a Statement

blue bedroom with chandelier

18. Architectural fragments, such as old mantels, corbels, brackets, and molding, bring aged cottage elements into a new home. Look for vintage pieces at flea markets and antique shops.

Sweet Touches

table with daisies and hanging plates

19. Knobs dress up a utilitarian piece of furniture. Adding glass or crystal knobs freshens a dated sideboard. Look for new or vintage knobs at flea markets and garage sales.

Smart Storage

old typewriter and wire basket

20. Wire baskets add charm as well as storage. Below a desk, they can hold favorite books or magazines.

Relaxing Bath

claw foot tub

21. Claw-foot tubs offer instant cottage style in the bathroom. Check our salvage and antique stores to find a vintage tub in your area.

Classic Wainscoting

white bathroom with beaded board walls and pedestal sink

22. Wainscoting wraps a bathroom with charm. Bright white paint tops the beaded board with restful color, and it’s easy and inexpensive to redo when your color mood changes.

Source: bhg

“I love all these ideas, they seem very easy and simple to do. Maybe I’ll decorate my cousin’s new apartment with these ideas in mind.”

“Oh So Fabulous!!”

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3 thoughts on “Home Decor’: 22 Fresh, Frugal Cottage Ideas

  1. Patti says:

    Hi, I love that blue checkered couch cover..could you tell me where I could find one..or did you make this…I am redoing my whole house in cottage decor and am having a very hard time picking colors..thank you!! Patti

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