cottage decorating ideas, coastal decorating ideas, country decorating ideas

Color Board: Reds, Greens & Blues

Color Board: Reds, Greens & Blues

With so many colors to choose from, the cottage design schemes are endless!  A pop of red on an accent chair, a deep blue cabinet, funky green lamps – what would you choose?

Cottage Design Schemes | Color Board: Reds, Greens & Blues #colorboard #reds #greens #blues #cottage style http://thedistinctivecottage.com

Explore red, green and blue fabrics at Cottage Home

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Inspiration Board: Autumn Oranges

Autumn Oranges

Fall is officially here and we are feeling inspired by the orange hues we see all around us – turning leaves, plump pumpkins, early sunsets & late-night campfires!

Cottage Furniture | Inspiration Board: Autumn Oranges #inspirationboards #decoratingwithorange #cottagestyle #slipcoveredsofas #paintedfurniture http://thedistinctivecottage.comFlagstaff Bench customizations: 60″L x 25″D x 38″H, one color painted, tangerine, medium rub & distressing $725  |  Cottage Single Pedestal Desk & Hutch customizations: 48″W x 24″D x 65″H, standard leg, right side two drawers, keyboard pull-out tray, beadboard side panels, beadboard hutch, painted, squash, shaker knobs $1,545  |  Orange Recycled Glass Fluted Urn Lamp 25″H $230  |  Marina Slipcovered Accent Chair 34″W x 35″D x 37″H $980  |  Carolina Two Door Bookcase customizations: 55″W x 14″D x 84″H, straight base, arched top, fluted stiles, carolina basket weave doors, wood knobs, two tone painted, snow with jambalaya back $3,095  |  Paprika Labyrinth Hand Tufted Rug 4’6″ x 6’6″ $795  |  Lanier End Table customizations: 16″W x 16″D x 24″H, two color rub, tangerine over butter, medium distressing $600  |  East Lake Pedestal Table customizations: 48″R x 30″H, custom stain top, painted base, tangerine, medium distressing $1,920  |  Orange Oval Glass Lamp 27″H $230  |  Chatham Slipcovered Sofa $1,585  |  Carolina Four Drawer Kitchen Island customizations: 60″W x 25″D x 35″H, butcher block top, painted base, sunset $3,010

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The Braided Rug: A Tradition Old & New

The Braided Rug: An American Tradition Old & New

A staple of the country or cottage home, today’s braided rug is reminiscent of earlier days evoking memories of hearth and home.  With sophisticated colors and patterns, braided rugs are now ‘at home’ in any setting from county cabin to urban contemporary.  These are not your Grandma’s braided rugs!

Cottage Braided Rugs: An American Tradition Old & NewThe braided rug carries memories of a simpler time when families gathered around the hearth at the end of a busy day.  This traditional American craft actually originated in England and traveled to North America with the Pilgrims.  Simple and sturdy, these rugs were used to warm the cold wooden floorboards in Colonial New England.  The braided rug soon made its way West with the pioneers, and quickly spread throughout the country.

Women gathered in the evenings, braiding rugs from old scraps of fabric, worn coats, and discarded pieces of clothing – the ultimate in recycling.  They passed the skill along to their daughters, working together while the men repaired harnesses and tools.  In its earliest form, there was little attention paid to design or color.  Most braided rugs had a strand of black fabric running through the entire rug, since black was the most readily available fabric culled from old black coats, pants and jackets.  The black strand was braided with whatever other colors were on hand at the time.  This was commonly referred to as the ‘hit-or-miss’ pattern.

A typical braided rug is made from three strands of fiber.  Just like braiding hair, the right strand is wrapped over the center strand and then the left strand is wrapped over the center strand, in a continuous cycle of repetition.  When it reaches the desired length, the braid is then sewn together into various shapes and sizes – round or oval being the simplest and originially most popular.  Eventually, square and rectangular rugs were made, some even reversible. 

When New England emerged as a center for wool-making in the 1800’s, braided rugs became more sophisticated and complex.  Skeins of wool became available, replacing the old discarded fabrics and remnants.  As designs became more intricate, some women even developed their own recognizable style, much like a signature.  There were borders and variations of patterns using color and shading.  The humble braided rug came into its own as a treasure of American Folk Art.

Wool Mill 1800'sLike its cousin – the antique hand-sewn quilt – heirloom braided rugs are difficult to find today and usually fetch high prices.  Their age and fragility often makes them better suited for wall art than for a floor covering.

Hand-braided rugs are still made today by crafters and artisans following the time-honored tradition of the early colonial settlers.  As cottage or country style furnishings have come into vogue, the braided rug is fast becoming a focal point of the new ‘old’ décor.  Few are still hand-crafted, while most are machine made, making them more affordable.  Today’s rugs come in a variety of materials, including wool, cotton, nylon, chenille cotton and even polypropylene for outdoor use.

Unlike their humble ancestors, contemporary braided rugs offer endless choices – round, square, oval, rectangular in standard or custom dimensions to fit any setting.  Patterns and colors range from bold stripes to subtle hues.  Some braided rugs replicate the traditional patterns that date back to the 1800’s when braiding was in its heyday.  Others set out in a striking, creative new direction to impart a contemporary interpretation to the traditional braided rug with vertical, concentric and cross-sewn braids.  Some rugs are even made using ‘micro-braids’ for enhanced color variation.  Reversible rugs enable the homeowner to change the décor with the changing seasons.  No wonder the simple braided rug is experiencing a renaissance – finding its place in homes from the seashore to the mountains, lakes, and prairies.  Quite simply – the braided rug is as American as apple pie! 

Cross Sewn Braided Rug   Allegani Braided RugIridenscence Braided RugCabana Stripes Braided RugIndoor/Outdoor Braided RugRectangular Braided Rug
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Rooms To Love: Coastal Living Room

Rooms To Love: Coastal Living Room

The open, airy space of this living room lends itself to a naturally coastal feel.  A mix of formal leather chairs and a casual slipcovered sofa is a unique way to mix up the style in a room.  We love the bright pops of color through the coffee table and accessories.  And always remember – a fun grouping of accessories immediately livens a room!

Rooms To Love: Coastal Living Room Inspiration
photo: Country Living

Pawley's Island Coffee Table

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Design Tip: Bring The Outdoors In

Design Tip: Bring The Outdoors In

Mother Nature can often be an inspiration for interior designing.  Bring natural elements into a space for instant depth and beauty in a room.  As shown in this room, simple colors and outdoor elements lend themselves to a care-free sophistication.

Natural elements, like flowers and greenery, are easy to change in and out with the seasons – always keeping a room fresh and updated.  Floral fabrics and natural wood furniture also lend themselves to an “earthy” air in a room.

source: Home Rules

Designing with Natural Elements | Design Tip: Bring The Outdoors In
photo: goodhousekeeping

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Staff Picks: Jennifer’s Living Room

Jennifer's Living Room

“My favorite color palette uses soft blues and whites, especially for homes along the Maine coast.  I love cotton and linen fabrics as they lend themselves to a comfortable and airy feel.  I chose the driftwood finish for the chair to bring in the natural element of the beach to my coastal living room.  The rug adds another pattern that ties the room together and pairs beautifully with the upholstery.”

– Jennifer R.

Living Room Style Inspiration | Staff Pick's: Jennifer's Living Room #coastallivingroom #beachhousedecor #slipcoveredsofas #cottagefurniture http://thedistinctivecottage.com

Monterey Roll Arm Sofa Oceano Giclee Canvas Print Glynn Blanc Shoreline Fabric Glynn Chambray Shoreline Fabric Santa Anna Accent Chair Crackle Mercury Glass Table Lamp Isle of Palms Sand Dune Rug

Jennifer’s Choices: Monterey Exposed Leg Roll Arm 3 Seat Sofa slipcovered with Glynn Blanc and Glynn Chambray contrast welt and Paloma Mocha throw pillows, Oceano Giclée Canvas, Blue Mercury Crackle Lamp, Isle of Palms Rug, Santa Ana Accent Chair & Ottoman upholstered in Latika Indigo and Driftwood frame

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