There’s something inherently cozy about spending a lazy weekend at a cabin. Disconnecting from the city and reconnecting with nature has proven health benefits—but we happen to believe it’s even better when the interior matches the splendor of the natural landscape.
Conjuring up visions of cabins and cottages usually results in rustic interiors with a serious emphasis on country and farmhouse style but there’s something to be said about a modern cabin interior; clean lines and current design aesthetic doesn’t have to exist solely in the city.
Below, we rounded up a handful of stunning modern cabin interior ideas that are fresh and fun—as well as tips and tricks for making the modern cabin concept your own.
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Consider Open Shelving
“When designing a modern cottage interior, you have to think of practicality just as much as romanticism,” says Marcia Miller, founder and CEO of Mud Pie. “Because cottages are often smaller second homes, utilizing space well is key. In a quaint kitchen, for example, you’ll want to opt for open shelving that can store nested pieces, like bakers and mixing bowls.”
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Don’t Be Afraid to Mismatch
“The furniture inside a cottage is frequently repurposed, bought at a flea market, as well as gathered from family discards,” says Miller. “Nothing has to match, and nothing should, but the overall impact is attractive and welcoming. To assist it to fit into your scheme, everything found could be painted or recovered.”
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Pay Attention to Texture
For the living areas, display textured baskets that hold cozy blankets, and incorporate natural tones in the design, suggests Miller. “Choose pieces with nods to the outdoors, wood elements, and woven textiles to give your space a fresh and homey feeling.”
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Consider Repurposed Items
“Pieces in cottage decor are frequently transformed from one purpose to another,” explains Miller. “A bench, for example, can also be used as a dining table, an old kitchen cabinet can be used to hide towels in a bathroom, and a kitchen table can be used as a desk.”Continue to 5 of 15 below.
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Design Bright and Airy Bedrooms
The cottage should have a warm and cozy atmosphere, but leaning too far into cozy territory can sometimes take away from the modern aesthetic you’re aiming for. Strike the ideal combination of cozy and modern by using bright and airy bedroom details, like white shiplap or soft wood details.
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Opt for Bare Wood Flooring
“In cottage style homes, the floors are generally casual and even uneven,” explains Mark Osborne, Director at Country Hardwood. “A decent choice is to go with bare wood floors. Patterns can be stenciled on painted floors to provide interest or delineate regions, and new timber can be treated to look aged.”
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Get Creative With Decorative Goods
“In cottage homes, anything can function as an item [of decor], so keep an eye open wherever you go,” says Osborne. “In a cozy cottage room, charming plates, ancient hats, musical instruments, intriguing pictures, and heirloom samplers become the focal point. Antique stores, tag sales, Grandma's basement, and flea markets all have a wealth of useful and decorative goods.”
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Embrace Natural Elements
“Rough-hewn wood, natural stone, and earth-inspired finishes like copper and iron make cottage interiors feel anchored in history and connected to nature,” shares Sarah Barnard, founder of Sarah Barnard Design LLC. This can also translate with the addition of greenery, whether foraged from the outdoors or using house plants.Continue to 9 of 15 below.
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“Resist the urge to pair multiple items that demand attention,” warns Barnard. Instead, she suggests aiming for a singular focal point, allowing the most magnificent decor pieces or furniture to shine rather than compete with one another.
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Embrace Whimsical Accents
According to Barnard, while other design styles might want for a more restrained approach, modern cottage designs benefit from nature-inspired patterns and portraits featuring birds, butterflies, wildlife, and blooms.
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Go for Fantasy
“Sometimes folks dream of a cottage that feels so rustic and handmade it's borderline hobbit-y,” says Barnard. “Hobbit-house aesthetics can be beautiful though; think irregular handmade tiles, craggy stone floors, and intricate textured ceilings.”
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Consider a Rustic-Inspired Gallery Wall
Barnard suggests opting for rough-hewn woods, antique or patinated metals, and bright natural colors to add a rustic polish to a modern space. A rustic-inspired gallery wall is an excellent way to bring in color and texture without overwhelming a room.Continue to 13 of 15 below.
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Focus on Gathering Spaces
When decorating your home as a modern cottage, highlight the communal spaces. “A cozy cottage is reminiscent of intimate gatherings where all guests feel like a part of the family,” says Barnard.
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Bring the Outside In
According to Barnard, using organic materials, such as plant-flooded statement walls, and incorporating biophilic design elements is an excellent way to create a more modern aesthetic in a rustic setting.
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Embrace Cozy Linens
Another way to foster a sense of coziness without sacrificing modern design principles? Outfit your bedrooms with neutral fabrics—especially washed linens. Washed linen offers a modern aesthetic but is just as cozy to curl up in as traditional knits.
How Immersion in Nature Benefits Your Health. Yale School of Environment.