Have you recently found yourself longing for a simpler existence, unfettered by modern technology in a Thomas Hardy-esque bucolic idyll? You’re not alone, cottagecore – a trend driven by quaint rural aesthetics and the traditional English country vibe – is on the rise. When its subject matter is rambling rose-filled gardens, authentic shaker kitchens and an abundance of vintage lace and broderie anglaise, why wouldn’t you want to give it a go?
Embodying the trend is Cath Kidston, a brand which has British culture at its core. The eponymous founder launched her first shop in London’s Notting Hill back in 1993 – which is where the signature hand-drawn prints were born. From English garden roses to polka dots and red London buses, Cath Kidston has become renowned for its vintage-style patterns, used across fabrics, homeware, clothes and accessories.
Spring is all about optimism, and that’s what Cath Kidston’s new collection aims to inspire. During lockdown, the brand’s artists painted an imagined kingdom – think leopard-spotted unicorns and lion-striped monkeys – designed to evoke feelings of hope. This was the foundation for the spring collection, which includes a new homeware range, featuring everything from bedding to place mats and china products, all of which epitomise the cottagecore phenomenon. Its embroidered cushions, knitted throws, patterned ironing board covers and floral oven gloves will give your home that quintessentially British, countryside feel.
Below we look at how to tap into the trend, including the key products to buy and expert tips from interior designer and English country cottage enthusiast, Bee Osborn.
Cottagecore Interiors Edit: What To Buy
Styling Tips With Osborn Interiors
What are your decorating tips for a country cottage feel?
Add lots of layers and textures to a space to create the quintessential cosy cottage feel. To enhance authenticity your should expose beams and old stone walls, and fabrics like linens and grainsack are ideal to build an organic and natural feel in a cottage interior. Warmth and cosiness are key, and best achieved with candles, lanterns – and of course, a log burner!
How can you keep a cottagecore aesthetic fresh, bright and modern?
Incorporate a few key modern lighting fixtures or furniture pieces in the mix with your treasured antiques to create a beautiful balance between old and new. If you love a brighter, cleaner look this can be achieved in a low-ceilinged room by painting your beams the same colour as your ceiling. An abundance of greenery in a room immediately gives new life and a fresh feel, and you can make a great difference with small details such as leather buckles or a geometric cushion.
What accessories should you invest in for a country cottage feel?
Lanterns and candles are great pieces for styling, as well as beautiful rustic planters and pots. Trawl antiques centres to find more unique home accessories that can be used for styling and creating a layered country aesthetic.
And how about furniture?
Choose a traditionally shaped sofa and layer with throws and cushions, wicker baskets, jute rugs, leather trunks and a few antique pieces for instant character and individuality.
Final tips and finishing touches?
To finish off your look beautifully, style the space with fun accessories and interesting coffee table books, and stack up logs and old books. Add artworks that you love and mirrors to the walls to give your space personality and the feel of home.
Imagery from Cath Kidston’s new spring collection