When you think of country living, do you conjure up visions of farmhouses, rolling hills and open spaces, antique fixtures and well-worn yet charming furnishings? That’s cottagecore, and it has had a huge following for the past couple of years. But if you take this style and conjure up spooky, witchy or downright macabre accents? That is goth cottagecore, and it is creeping onto the design scene with some interesting looks.
How did country living morph into tales from the crypt? Alicia Blomquist of Rustic Queen Halloween has a theory. “I think originally cottagecore took hold because of the pandemic,” she says. ”It’s a more fun and whimsical decorating style, and since everyone was stuck at home, you might as well make yourself and your home feel cozy. Then from that, the cottage goth style evolved. So for the people who liked to have their spooky pieces out all year, they just mixed it in and it took off!”
Blomquist’s home is full of interesting finds, but she says this veiled maiden was a favorite for a good while… until she lost the top spot to a little green amphibian. “I think that the taxidermy frog that my sister got for me takes the No. 1 spot!” she says.
The style isn’t just about leaving adorable little witches and cute ceramic ghosts on the mantel. For fans of goth cottagecore, the finer points of the design are just as curated as the cutest faux farmhouse.
“What draws me to Gothic decor is the unique mix of romanticism and oddities items used to make a statement,” says Bre of @bre_witched. “Dead florals, books and a candelabra are always going to be staple items for the Goth look, but what draws us in further is that the book used in a vignette happens to be Poe’s classics or maybe a biography on Robert Smith. It’s the macabre but beautiful and interesting things that make the best decor and conversation pieces!”
Step into Her Parlor
Bre turned one corner of a room in her home into a Victorian funeral parlor theme, complete with antique papers. “My favorite piece of decor in my collection would have to be an antique funeral card, proclaiming the name, age and residence of the deceased in a gorgeous scroll font and age-stained white background,” she says. “It’s an unexpected decor choice and I love that.”
She has added a tall cherub candle holder to the vignette. Bree says. Where does she find all her goth knick-knacks? “Many in the Goth community are artists and makers themselves! And who better to tell you the trend than the people who live it and make it?” she asks. “The next best thing are thrift stores and antique stores. Almost everything I use is thrifted or shopped locally at small businesses. I have a rule of always stopping at a thrift or antique store when I pass by a new one.”
Black and Light
Candles are a big accessory in the goth cottagecore style, and Abbey of @abbeynevermore has added them tastefully throughout her living room. Some in a candelabra, more in lanterns and a grouping on a cathedral window-shaped mirrored shelf. The room keeps it understated with the black accents playing off light walls and a black-and-cream rug to tie it all together.
Classy and a Little Creepy
Who says you can’t have an elegant, beautiful Christmas tree in a goth-themed space? Elizabeth Prall of Eerily Vintage creates a vintage seasonal scene in her living room that still might put you a little on edge.
The tree’s white lights reflect perfectly off the somber portraits and eclectic goth pieces around the room. Her elegant, antique curio holds a vast collection of vintage figurines and a group of unusual carolers. The addition of a vintage white dress on a form in the corner and a baby gown hanging just above put just a touch of intrigue and tension. Prall’s design shows that you can create a livable, beautiful space that tends toward the mystical.
Drama in the Details
As in any home design, it is often the unexpected items that make the room. Heather of @shelvesonarnia has a collection of vintage books in her space, and not just any old books: her tales are all about the fantastical world of fairies. Books feature prominently in many goth cottagecore rooms, and having them go that extra step of the content matching the mood makes the darkness even more delicious.
Wall of Weird
Something you will find in many goth cottagecore homes—and a good way to get started if you are into the style—is to find some old pictures of people you don’t know and create a gallery wall. And if you have a slightly odd angel, like Dave of @haus.of.goff does, even better. You don’t have to take on the whole house at once, unless you want to! Start with a wall and let the inspiration flow from there.
Kelcie Grey blends dark walls with intricately carved wood accents and an array of lanterns and bottles that turn her kitchen into something out of a witchy apothecary in a fairy tale. The white ceilings in the background reflect just enough light to give a half-shaded vibe that beckons you to see what’s cooking… if you dare!