Just the mere word ‘lodge’ conjures images of a crackling fire…the aroma of a stew cooking in the kitchen…a rustic retreat designed for comfort and warmth. Your lodge could be a cozy log cabin on the prairie or a grandiose spread on a mountaintop out West. In fact, lodge style can be interpreted to fit just about every locale – east, west, north, south and in the middle. A lodge may be a vacation retreat or a year-round abode. Most of all, it’s a home for all seasons.
What accounts for the new popularity of lodge-style living? For many, it’s motivated by a desire to return to a simpler time when the world revolved around hearth and home. Designed for comfort and ease, a lodge is meant to be lived in. Rugged and rustic, a lodge is well-suited to today’s active lifestyles. It can handle the ‘clomp’ of heavy boots and the traffic of a houseful of kids, pets and friends.
While there are many definitions of lodge style, there are a few common denominators. The essential element in lodge living is that it brings the outdoors inside with an abundance of natural materials and the rich textures of wood. You are likely to find a stone fireplace, slate floors or countertops, wooden beams and wide-plank floors.
The most important thing to remember about lodge-style decorating is don’t overdo! It is easy to get carried away with a theme and before you know it, your home starts to resemble an overblown movie set. A little goes a long way. Use elements of lodge style in a tasteful ensemble that reflects your own locale and your personal taste. Here are some suggestions that may help inspire your own brand of lodge living.
High on the lodge list are farmhouse tables made of reclaimed wood or rough-hewn pine. Families may gather round the table on prairie-style ladder back chairs with rush cane seating. Others prefer benches to help fit more family and friends around the bountiful table. Twig furniture and birch bark lamps are reminiscent of an earlier time when the pioneers fashioned furniture from abundant natural materials.
Color is another element that helps define lodge style. Rich, warm earth tones, reds and greens, and wrought-iron black accents set the stage. Mix patterns and solids, plaids and stripes in a tasteful harmony of colors found in the great outdoors.
Lodge living is all about comfort. Relax on big, oversized sofas and easy chairs in soft natural fibers or plush leather in deep red, forest green or tawny brown. Pillows and throws help complete the scene. Wide plank or slate floors are covered with colorful rugs that help warm cold floors. You can choose natural fiber rugs or old-fashioned braided and rag rugs for an authentic lodge décor.
Since lodges are often large, they can accommodate large-scale furnishings – big sofas and chairs, ample farmhouse tables, storage chests, armoires, cabinets and more. Whether large or small, it is critical to select furnishings that fit the scale of your lodge home.
Now for the accents! Here’s where you can let your creativity soar. How about a big wrought-iron chandelier over the dining table? Consider a birch-log lamp or a faux fur throw. An old pair of wooden skis, snowshoes or an old sled can be ideal accents for a ski lodge theme. Carved decoys or fishing lures may be just right for a lakeside cabin. Big walls are perfect for mounting collections – old tools, arrowheads found in the woods, photographs and prints. You might even consider mounting a collection of deer or elk antlers that are shed naturally by these animals – no hunting involved!
But remember the rule – don’t overdo! Look in the attic. Browse through tag sales. Turn to nature for inspiration to create a lodge home that is a reflection of you!
Brought to you by Cottage Home– specializing in cottage furniture & farmhouse tables