Cottagecore decor ideas for living rooms – 10 ways to embrace this charming trend

Our cottagecore ideas for living rooms will inspire you to fill your space full of quaint and quirky pieces

cottagecore decor ideas for living rooms, living room with panelled walls painted in a pale green, neutral sofa, wooden coffee table, blue floor lamp, artwork, navy armchair, jute rug, orange cushions, plant
(Image credit: Molly Mahon)

Cottagecore is a trend that's not fading away, so it's time to embrace this charming aesthetic with cottagecore decor ideas for living rooms that will transform your space into a beautiful room that represents rural life, sustainability and artisanal elements. 

Cosy living and a slower way of life are the two main ingredients for the cottagecore trend that can evolve to suit your own style too. 

'Cottagecore, the trend that embraces the nostalgic aesthetic of the English countryside cottage, is still proving popular,' says Shelley Cochrane, accessories buyer at Furniture Village. 'For those who wish to embrace this style in their living room without it looking too twee, my top tip is to combine traditional furniture and classic pattern with contemporary colour.'

Cottagecore decor ideas for living rooms

Embracing a slower paced life, cottagecore decor ideas for living rooms will give you the low down on what simple changes you can implement so you can update your sitting room.

Our expert advice below will give you some fabulous ideas on how to start collecting for this wholesome trend. 

1. Team ditsy wallpaper with clashing upholstery

cottagecore decor ideas for living rooms, living room with pink floral ditsy wallpaper, wall light, black and white checked armchair, coral vase on marble mantel,

(Image credit: 1838 Wallcoverings)

If you love living room wallpaper ideas then choosing a ditsy design will fit perfectly into the cottagecore theme – and it doesn't end there, team it with bold upholstery too for a total effect.

‘Combining small-scale floral wallpaper patterns with geometrics in your interior scheme will add a juxtaposition that will balance the more decorative elements,' advises James Watson, managing director at 1838 Wallcoverings.

Playing with scale creates drama and it's a great way to modernise the cottagecore trend if you like punchier colours.

James adds, 'Adding monochromatic touches to further ground a highly patterned, colourful interior, like this black and white upholstered armchair, creates a brilliant contrast to the patterned walls, and allows the eye to appreciate each element individually within the space.’

headshot of James Watson
James Watson

James Watson is the managing director of 1838 Wallcoverings, a luxury brand based in Lancashire led by James and his sister, Abigail Watson, whose family has over 4 generations of wallpaper printing experience. Each collection encompasses timeless classic patterns reimagined from archive prints, to contemporary digitally printed designs. 

2. Give your walls a colour drench

cottagecore decor ideas for living rooms, pale green cottage/farmhouse living room with stable door, directors chair, hearth, painted floorboards, brick fireplace, colour drenched walls in pale green

(Image credit: Farrow & Ball)

A simple yet oh-so-effective paint idea is giving your walls, woodwork and ceiling a colour drench. Choose a shade that represents the cottagecore theme – this could be muted tones like pale green, stone or terracotta. 

It's a great starting point and you can then add in accessories to pretty your space up after. Look for nostalgic pieces like vintage artwork, iron candlesticks and wall lights and one-of-a-kind seating. 

3. Source artisanal furniture

Living room with large french doors, full length curtains and an armchair.

(Image credit: Future)

Ditch factory made furniture and look for makers instead. This look is all about individuality and uniqueness and the best place to search for handcrafted designs is antique fairs and independent designers who sell online or at makers events.

'Furniture made by craftsmen and artisans has soul, and will introduce personality to your room,' says Simon Temprell, interior design lead, Neptune. 'These special pieces of furniture can stand alone as a focal point or might be part of a scheme.  

Using one-off pieces in your living room will perfectly create the cottagecore look, 'They are easy to introduce into almost any room as they don’t have to match or coordinate. The simple lines and honest use of materials make these pieces adaptable and easily blended with modern or traditional interiors,' adds Simon.

expert headshot Simon Temprell
Simon Temprell

Simon Temprell has been designing commercial and domestic interiors for over forty years. He started out in London, working for Harrods and Sanderson, before moving to Brussels to concentrate on a two-year commercial contract which led to twenty-three years living in Washington, DC. He moved back to the UK in 2015 and is now interior design lead at Neptune.

4. Paint your fireplace

cottagecore decor ideas for living rooms, colourful living room with decorated fireplace, pastel pink walls, rugs, blue print sofa, bright cushions, Charleston style prints, mix and match patterns

(Image credit: Molly Mahon)

If you love painting and colour then consider painting some designs in your living room, it could be a handprinted design around a doorway, a piece of furniture or painting a simple pattern on your fireplace idea

'My living room is a joyful space, the heart of our home. Its focal point is a big fireplace which was originally a very dull grey,' says block printer and textile designer, Molly Mahon.

'Whilst we’re so lucky to have it, it was quite overwhelming as our cottage isn’t very big and the whole thing was just a bit miserable. I wanted to create a more painterly feel and inject more colour into the room. It was after one of my visits to Charleston farmhouse – the wonderfully decorative house in Sussex belonging to The Bloomsbury Group – that gave me the idea that I could actually decorate it. It has bought so much light and joy to the room, making it a lovely feature and a focal point, even in the springtime when the fire isn’t lit. I firmly believe that you can apply pattern anywhere, it doesn’t always have to be fabric.'

expert headshot of Molly Mahon
Molly Mahon

Molly Mahon Studio began in 2012 as a passion project, and today is a global lifestyle brand whose mission is to keep the art of block printing alive. Founded by Molly Mahon, a British block printer and textile designer, Molly Mahon Studio is still very much a family-run business and holds traditional values to the fore.  There is something special about block printing that has stood the test of time. It brings the fabric alive and this is exactly what it does to our homes.

5. Mismatch your seating

cottagecore living room ideas, living room with panelled walls painted in a pale green, neutral sofa, wooden coffee table, blue floor lamp, artwork, navy armchair, jute rug, orange cushions, plant

(Image credit: John Lewis)

This idea can be pulled together with very little cost as you might be able to use furniture from other rooms to create a cottagecore feel in your living room. A vintage armchair that you use in a bedroom might look great in your living room for example. 

One of the elements of cottagecore is that pieces don't match, this gives you more freedom to create the look without the worry of things having to work together. Create visual links across you sofa and chairs with cushions and throws in similar shades and patterns, this will give your living room cohesion. 

6. Get collecting!

cottagecore decor ideas for living rooms, white living room with cottagecore style decor, plates in shelving, paisley blind, black and white stripe sofa, paisley cushions, log burner, artwork, jute carpet, rug

(Image credit: Future)

Be inspired by cottage aesthetics – think of things you may love to collect – it could be tapestries in frames, vintage books, handcrafted baskets, Cornishware or antique plates.

Creating a display with them and hanging them on the wall is a great cottagecore decor idea. It will add colour, pattern and a focal point in your living room. Plate display ideas are a great option as their roundness helps your eye to flow around the room – utilise alcoves or hang above a mantel as a lovely decorative collection. 

7. Choose a bright accent for a modern twist

cottagecore decor ideas for living rooms, white farmhouse/cottage style living room with yellow accents, sofa and footstool, beams, rustic elements

(Image credit: Furniture Village)

For a fresher twist on the classic cottagecore style you could choose an accent colour that suits your scheme but doesn't compromise on the key aesthetics of the look.

Shelley Cochrane, accessories buyer at Furniture Village explains:

'For larger pieces of furniture, like a sofa, opt for a traditional style and fabric but choose a statement shade, such as on-trend yellow for a modern twist. Style this with classic wooden or whitewashed furniture for traditional cottage style.'

Layer jute and cotton rugs over wooden floorboards and invest in lamps and mirrors with wooden bases and frames. Weave foraged branches from beams if you have them, if not, use a tall vase in the middle of the dining table.

'No cottagecore living room would be complete without some flowers or greenery – bringing the outside in is key to achieving this look so incorporate some plants, flowers or accessories featuring botanical prints,' agrees Shelley.

8. Create a window seat

Window seat with upholstered cushion and two scatter cushions

(Image credit: Future PLC/Mark Scott)

You'll always find cosy nooks and window seats in traditional cottages, they often have deep window sills that can be turned into such places. They're a classic cottagecore decor idea that you can use to transform your living room. 

Large windows can mean 'coolness' though if you have a north-facing living room so paint your walls in a warming shade like plum or mid-brick red to cosy it up. 

'Earthy colours such as browns reflect less light so make a room less active and therefore more restful,' says Helen Shaw, international marketing director, Benjamin Moore. 'A rich burgundy paired with dark brown woods or accents will bring a rustic warmth to any room. This works particularly well in large, well-lit spaces where there is plenty of natural light.'

Finish this cottagecore look with deep squidgy seat cushions made from ticking teamed with jute flooring and comfy cushions for reading. Helen adds, 'Layer the look with natural materials such as ceramic clay vases and textured fabrics to soothe the senses and deliver softer surroundings.'

Helen Shaw headshot
Helen Shaw

Helen Shaw is part of Benjamin Moore's UK division. Colour expert and international marketing director, Helen and her husband Craig are founders of Shaw Paints, acquired by Benjamin Moore in 2020.

9. Add some twee to your windows

cottagecore decor ideas for living rooms, living room with stripe curtains and pelmet with trim, matching cushion on taupe sofa

(Image credit: Tori Murphy)

There's no cute cottage style without beautiful living room curtains that are both practical from the winter draughts and charmingly decorative too. You might even consider popping one up over the door for extra warmth.

For an update that takes your current curtains from normal to cottagecore think about adding a pelmet. Oh-so-cute and great for hiding curtain poles and tracks, the finishing result is quintessentially cottagecore. You can even add a trim in a contrasting colour for extra charm. 

10. Go overboard with florals

living room with black floral wallpaper and wooden floor

(Image credit: Future PLC / Lizzie Orme)

Florals on florals – you heard it right! For the ultimate in cottagecore embrace florals in every corner of your living room – from a vintage floral sofa teamed with ditsy cushions to floral rugs, vases and wallpaper – this option is all-encompassing but one that if you get it right, will look fabulous.

You will need to balance it out a little with some plain aspects, keep flooring simple and woodwork white and maybe add in a blanket or two in a solid colour. But the key elements should be as many floral finds as you can source – think grandma's cottage! 


Absolutely yes, the delightful charm of vintage pieces, mismatched furniture and pretty florals is here to stay. Most of us yearn after living in a cottage deep in the countryside so this is a great way to incorporate the key pieces into your living room. 

And there's also the aspect of simplicity that makes it so appealing – being one with nature (foraged branches and stems) and artisanal elements like handcrafted seating, ceramics made by local designers and custom made cushions complete with ruffled edges. 

How do I make my house look cottagecore? 

You can incorporate our cottagecore decor ideas for living rooms and some aspects will be relevant to other spaces in your home too. Keep the colour scheme earthy unless you're opting for a ditsy wallpaper which can be a charming pastel floral style design. Use natural floor coverings like jute or coir rugs and carpet and start collecting objects you love that have a sense of history. 

These elements can work in any room of your home, it's about handmade style and antique finds and it might take awhile to gather these core pieces together. Start small and build up your collections slowly. 

Sophie Warren-Smith

Sophie has been an interior stylist and journalist for over 22 years and has worked for many of the main interior magazines during that time, both in-house and as a freelancer. On the side, as well as being the News Editor for indie magazine, 91, she trained to be a florist in 2019 and launched The Prettiest Posy where she curates beautiful flowers for modern weddings and events.