The series “Seasonal Design” covers home decor and how flowers elevate an environment. In this story, we feature the cottagecore flowers associated with the cottagecore lifestyle.
Once upon a time, we were tiny humans listening to stories about woodland folk who lived in cozy thatch cottages and found wild berries and mushrooms to eat in the forest. That blissful feeling can be ours even as overly stressed adults, simply by accenting our home with the flowers of cottagecore: sublime arrangements of blooms that speak of country roads, cozy fireside, and cottage gardens.
Cottagecore, a design aesthetic, and lifestyle trend are all about the quest for natural surroundings that make you happy and reduce feelings of anxiety. It embraces a life that is harmonious yet floral, serene yet colorful, simple yet lush.
“The desire for traditional blooms has emerged with the onset of the pandemic as people are looking at life and recalling the past when life was less challenging and less complicated,” notes Valerie Ghitelman, vice president of product development, sourcing, and design at 1-800-Flowers.com. “Farm life and country garden-style flowers have gained popularity as generations are spending more time at home in search of a simpler more complete lifestyle.”
Certain flowers hold the magic key to the cottagecore look, from alstroemeria (Peruvian lilies) to sunflowers. They cheered us in the picture books of our childhood and now they evoke the wonder and contentment of pastoral life within our homes and office spaces.
Quintessential flowers you’ll love
Which cottagecore flowers speak to our quest for a simple, comfortable, and oh-so-beautiful life? They are the ones you can picture growing in the abundant gardens you’ve always wanted — fortunately, there are many blooms to fill the bill! “Garden roses, tulips, dahlias, hydrangeas, and spray roses all possess vintage flair and appeal to those who enjoy a traditional old-world style,” Ghitelman says.
Here are just a few to remember for the delightful cottagecore decorating:
Roses: Hands down the most beloved flower on Earth, roses never stop delighting with their amazing softness and unique shape. You always know it’s a rose no matter who you are or where you come from, and that familiarity is what cottagecore comfort is all about. And that scent!
Hydrangeas: The fluffiest blooms in the garden, hydrangea typically present in hues of sky-blue and rose pink. They grow generously in all kinds of gardens and conditions; the perfect companion to cottage life. Surround one large bloom with a handful of smaller flowers for an instant bedside or bathroom arrangement. They’re so joyful, you can even arrange hydrangeas on their own!
Lilacs: Lilac shrubs have been prized for their fragrance and color since ancient Greek times. They were often planted around homesteads and today, more than 100 years later the same hardy shrubs can be spotted long after the farmhouse itself disappeared. Lilacs speak of old-fashioned backyard gardens, with a small table set for tea.
Delphiniums: Although they come in numerous colors, delphinium flowers are best known for their blue variety, a dramatic deep periwinkle that is virtually irresistible. The blossoms are dainty and droopy, matching perfectly with other classic flowers like roses, alstroemeria, and carnations.
Daisies: The Jo March of flowers, daisies are playful, get those giggles, and perhaps can be a part of some light mischief. They are a quintessential country flower that can make an old coffee can look divine. Though they and are equally gorgeous gussied up and throw joy to any environment.
Snapdragons: Another old-fashioned staple, snapdragons are ideal cottagecore blooms. They come in an astonishing variety of colors and feature charming bell-shaped flowers that cluster in abundance at the head of the stem. Snapdragons add a bit of height to rounded bouquets for a hand-gathered effect.
Our favorite cottagecore flower creations
Whether you are just getting started with your quest for a more beautiful life or you just want a few simple touches to give your home a cottage flair, floral accents are the perfect place to start. Here are a few of our suggestions:
The quintessential pumpkin with its round shape and jaunty stem evoke the beloved harvest time of communities around the world. Whether fall or any other season, a charming ceramic pumpkin bursting with flowers is a great way to brighten the apartment or home.
Use wide-mouth vases that are a bit on the short side. Cut flowers will look more like a bunch of flowers growing in a garden this way. This ethereal bouquet is punctuated by vividly blue delphinium, one of our favorite cottagecore flowers.
Combining plenty of textures and colors captures the spirit of cottagecore. The pale-pink Mason jar in this sweet Confetti Bouquet has a pleasing honeycomb pattern (and would make a cute kitchen utensil holder later on!) It pairs well with a profusion of yellow alstroemeria, peach roses, and red hypericum.
Wreaths are symbols of eternal life and have become beloved beacons of welcome on front doors over the years. The standard circle gets a lovely refresh as a heart in this luscious wreath festooned with preserved pink hydrangea and myrtle branches. With its handmade look, the wreath will lift the hearts of all who see it.
Simple meets lavish in this colorful mix of cottage-style flowers. The weathered-looking box container keeps everything real and provides an appealing contrast to the mass of flowers inside. Perfect for that cottage outdoor party with friends!
Is Cottagecore what you’re longing for?
You know you’re a fan of cottagecore flowers if:
1. Your TikTok feed is full of happy women tending to their cutting gardens or flower farms out in the country.
2. Most of your screen time is spent gazing at homes with cascades of fresh flowers like dahlias, roses, hydrangea, and lilac. Bonus points for a sleepy cat sunning herself next to a vase of sunflowers.
3. Your favorite movies include The Holiday, Moonrise Kingdom, Little Women, and Pride and Prejudice (think: the re-proposal scene).
This yearning for pastoral beauty and a return to simpler times is a time-tested way to cope with the stress of modern life. It mirrors the emergence of Rustic Style, a mid-19th century aesthetic of the primitive, handmade, and untamed that rejected excess and overly formal design.
4. Generous profusions of mixed flowers with variegated greenery get your vote as favorite floral arrangements.
Weary workers in industrialized society responded enthusiastically to the new movement, learning to slow down and enjoy the fruits of nature and hand-craftsmanship as their agrarian ancestors once did. Wealthy families turned their formal gardens into landscapes containing wild masses of flowers and vines, punctuated by rustic arbors and handmade benches.
Does this sound like the look and lifestyle you love? Fortunately, there are lots of ways to enjoy the cottagecore life, starting with simple floral arrangements that enhance your home and even your office cubicle.
Live your best cottagecore life and you’ll find yourself stopping to smell the roses much more often!