How to get the colourful cottage look

If you love to play with colour, and bright, beautiful surroundings sound appealing right now, the colourful cottage trend marries a free-spirited attitude with a love of the great outdoors.

There are plenty of ways to get the look – and you don’t need to live in an actual cottage to channel your inner flower child and go from white to wow!

“During the height of 2020, pastoral, country-style design aesthetics saw a surge in interest, with many people presumably looking for a way to escape the feeling of being ‘stuck’ in urban or suburban homes and environments,” observes interior designer Celina Digby. “With this, cottagecore became the top design style during the year’s summer.”

Celina Digby Luxury Eco-Friendly Recycled Linen-Like Fabric Tablecloth - Rose Garden Natural, Celina Digby
(Celina Digby/PA)

Country chic and farmhouse aesthetics are seeing a comeback right now too, and Ms Digby says this time the look has had a bit of a makeover.

“While the cottagecore of lockdown saw people hero-ing neutrals and pastels – such as creams, pastel pinks and blues – 2022’s version is all about injecting bolder colours into our spaces,” explains the interiors expert.

Read: Give your home a luxe look for less

Joe Browns selection of Colourful Cottage homewares
(Joe Browns/PA)

The colourful cottage trend is inspired by our return to the outdoors and a rejuvenated appreciation for our gardens, something we all became very familiar with during various lockdowns. It’s all about bringing the natural beauty of the outdoors inside.

Joe Browns selection of Colourful Cottage tableware
(Joe Browns/PA)

Look for items that will bring a pop of vibrant colour into your home. Take inspiration from everything from butterflies to beautiful spring flowers.

Sofology Torres in Darwin Sky, other items from a selection, Sofology

It’s easy to create a colourful home and build on the cottagecore romantic concept. Try introducing some curvaceous pieces in a brighter than usual shade.

Beautiful Body Vase, Joe Browns
(Joe Browns/PA)

It’s not just about sticking with one set of bright shades though. There’s certainly room for an eclectic touch and mixing patterns and materials.

As Rohan Blacker, founder of Pooky, puts it: “Country cottage style tends to invoke images of muted earthy tones, mix-and-match botanical printed fabrics, and spaces filled with wooden furniture.”

Read: Decor styles to satisfy your wanderlust

Smaller Stucco Table Lamp in Turquoise, Shade from a selection, Pooky

“For those who are braver with colour and looking to create a modern version of this aesthetic, opt for accent items in primary red, blue and yellow across accessories and lighting,” suggests Mr Blacker.

“Think floral fabric lampshades paired with boldly bright resin bases, or a selection of patterned scatter cushions strewn across the sofa.”

Along with soft furnishings, sprays of dried flowers and farmhouse dining chairs – the spindle switched up a notch with a pop of colour – think about your main background colours too.

Introducing bright colours on the walls is a quick and easy way to update and invigorate your space. Or if you’re looking for something a bit different, why not create a colour scale for a more playful finish.

Benjamin Moore selection of paint colours
(Benjamin Moore/PA)

A colour gradient is a great way to introduce colour in a striking, eye-catching way, brightening up your home with a striking and impactful twist.

Otherwise, look at the areas in your home that lend themselves to detailing – not only for an instant burst of colour, but to elevate the space with creativity and a personal touch.

Updating even just a small corner of your home with a new colour can bring about the most enormous changes to not only your space, but also your mood. Perhaps colour is more important now than ever.

Warm Coloured Spiral Candles - 4 Pack, Talking Tables
(Talking Tables/PA)

Likewise, trying your hand at tablescaping to give your dining room or table setting a makeover with some simple styling tricks can be hugely rewarding.

“The colourful cottage trend for tablescaping blends bold primary colours in homely and rustic table settings,” says Margo Kane, co-founder of Tableday.

Read: Easy ways to work the 1970s trend at home

“It has some of the cosy earthiness and traditional feel of cottagecore, with its natural materials for placemats and charger plates, but instead of dreamy pastel napkins, candles and flower arrangements, colourful cottage has bold punchy brights,” explains Ms Kane.

Tableday Strawberry x Natural Signature Kit, Tableday

To get the look, Ms Kane says you could pair bright red gingham napkins with vibrant green foliage, and quirky iron candlesticks with strawberry-red candles.

Whichever side of the farmhouse fence you sit on, reinventing furnishings and laying the table is fun – and far from formal.

Colourful cottage tables are earthy, bright and less dressed up than many other styles. Typically, brighter, bolder primary colours are used to get the special look.

– With PA

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Written by Sam Wylie-Harris