Create an Instant Urban Cottage

Seven ways to make a small area look bigger.

Published: 20th April 2014 06:00 AM  |   Last Updated: 18th April 2014 03:32 PM   |  A+A-

So what if you live in a multi-storeyed apartment in the middle of a city? You can still create the look and feel of a cheerful country cottage within. Here are some easy and inspiring ideas:

co1.jpgMismatch it all:  Since cottage style living is all about informal and relaxed spaces, you need not fuss over what goes with what. Just buy what you like, and it will blend together once you have placed it in your home. The great advantage of this style is that it has your individual stamp and signature, standing out from the standard, formal looks elsewhere.

Use recycled items: The local junkyard is an amazing storehouse of stuff you can use in your country cottage style home. Think empty bottles, cans, jars. Old tables, chairs and cabinets. Mirrors, lamps, picture frames. Someone discarded them; you can paint them over, chisel them out and give them a fresh lease of life.

co2.jpgGive them double roles: An old steel trunk can be used as a seat if you place a rug and some cushions on it. A discarded wooden bench can add an element of drama to your living room. If space in your home is cramped, let your sofa slide out into a full bed once the guests are gone. Got empty flower vases? Maybe you can pop stationery items into them.

Don’t hide everyday items: Usually, we tuck away nail cutters into drawers, for example. In a cottage country home, your nail cutters can actually be flaunted on your fridge, attached to the colourful magnets you have on them! Similarly, your spice and herb jars, pasta canisters and cereal boxes need not stay tucked into dark cupboards. Bring them out and show them off on beautiful distress-finish shelves.

co3.jpgSay it with books and lamps: They make the best accessories, and are always great to have on your shelves and tables. Let books be your medium to infuse a pop of colour, boldness or freshness to your living areas. Lamps are another great decor piece. They are not only functional but they have the versatility to add style - ranging from simple to bold to modern or art deco in look and feel.

Go natural: In a cottage style home, rugs and durries are easy to roll up so you can keep changing their placement at whim. No expensive Persian carpets here! Sisal, hemp, bamboo and cotton—these are the materials of choice. Easy to dust out and clean, and superlight in texture too. Out with the synthetic!

Play with paint: Refreshing blues and spots of yellow add oodles of light and life to the dullest of spaces. And in a cottage style home, they totally belong! The quintessential image of a cottage is a wicker basket beside a rocking chair, with flowers smiling in a polka dotted tin can.


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