Sunday, June 20, 2010

aaaaah...cottage time

Please excuse the late posting…rouge was out of town adding a bit of flare to a favorite cottage.

Actually, that’s a bit of a fib. Unless eating off the bbq, wine & jenga, testing the new swimming dock and napping in the hammock count as re-design!

I did actually help spruce up said cottage not so long ago, though. A coat of paint in the entire place to freshen it up – we used light and airy colors like soft pastels (light blues, light greens and light creams) – made the biggest difference. Goodbye old wood paneling, hello to “what looks like new” fresh and cosy bead board!

We pulled up all the old carpeting and painted the floors a dark chocolate brown. I can’t even describe the difference this made in getting rid the musty smell. We added dollar store rag rug in each room for added comfort and a pop of color.

But that was a lot of work. Here are a few simple tips that are great for making your cottage feel more welcoming.

In keeping with what a cottage is supposed to be (not too fancy, laid-back, relaxed, fun), the key is learning to use what’s around you. There are lots of things that can be used in different ways to add a little something extra to your space.

And it all works, because it’s using items or elements that are in the cottage’s natural environment.

Here are a couple of examples:

• Sadly, there were a number of trees that had to be cut down. Although all of this will be great for the wood stove, we used a number of the stumps to help define the path from the parking area down to the front door. What a difference!

• We used a couple as side tables…perfect for placing your drink, book, hat, sunscreen on while lounging on the sunny deck. These work as a footstool too!
• We also used one inside as a bedside table for a bed that was low to the ground.

• We transplanted a lovely hosta (that somehow survived the bulldozer) in an old red bucket we found under the cottage. This adds a pop of color by the front door.

• Every time I visit, I stop along the way to pick bunches of wild flowers to put in the cottage. I never show up empty-handed and it’s wonderful to enjoy them for the weekend! Use anything you can find, if you don’t have any vases…water pitchers work the best, but bowls, buckets, and jars work great too.

• We used an old wooden salad bowl that was left over from the old owners and filled it with pine cones. The kids love finding new ones to add to it each time they visit!

• Also found under the cottage and left behind by the previous owners was a vintage croquet set. We used it as an art piece…and it’s one of my favorite items in the cottage because it makes me think about the history of the place and makes me imagine a much simpler time. I love the wood, the rust and the stripes on the balls.

Keep it simple, keep it clean and you can’t go wrong. Choose items that have some meaning to you…or even just items you love. Bring in a few elements from the outside and use your creativity to use everyday items in a new way.

In no time, you’ll have a wonderful cottage that you’ll never want to leave!

Special thanks to the BBG’s for inviting me to play again and again.

xx rouge.

For more about rouge, visit or check out past blogs at www.justalittlerouge/

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