Three years ago we ventured a 17 hour road trip to our new home in the Ozarks. The mountains are my favorite landscape and I’m so thankful to the Lord to be able to live here. Slowly, we’ve been turning this 1940s farmhouse into our very own Cottage with thrift shopping.
There’s a continual renovation project going on. In the midst of the projects, I have managed to capture the cottage vibe I love. Obtaining the cottage style, I look for authentic pieces not “new from a box store made to look old.” You know what I mean? There’s nothing wrong with that style, it’s just not what I’m looking for. (I do have some of the box store type decorations from years past.) Summer is a great time of year to be on the look out for such items.
How to thrift shop for cottage farmhouse decor?
- Yard sales – When looking for yard sales, I go for those labeled, “Community Yard sale” or “Church Yard sale.” If you find a sale where most things are items you would love to have, offer to buy the whole lot. We have done this. I kept a lot and sold the things I didn’t really care about.
- Thrift stores – Thrift shopping local thrift stores is my favorite! They usually have better prices than some well known chain thrift stores.
- Farm Auctions – Auctions are a great place to find antique furniture. We found our dining room table and chairs for $10! It has so much character and is wood, very ornate. You have to be patient at auctions. Some things go high and then there’s the antique table and chairs. Sometimes it depends on if there are resellers at the auction. You can usually tell after awhile. They’ll be the ones buying up all of the furniture or pricey time period items like carnival glass. You may even hear them mention their store.
- Barn Sales – These sales are similar to estate sales. They are usually the result an older couple moving to town or the family selling their elderly parents excess. Do a walk thru at least twice. These sales are usually packed with great finds.
- Flea Market – Well, we all know flea markets! They house a lot of really great vintage and antique pieces. I have had more success finding items at small town markets versus tourist town flea markets.
Our Kitchen Cottage Via Thrift Shopping
I have dreamt of the day I’ll have white bead board walls and butcher block countertops! Thankfully, the bead board project was started this summer.
I found this cabinet at an auction for $5! I took the doors off and painted the outside turquoise, leaving the doors and inside wood tone. This cabinet houses most of our dishes. I love that you can see the dishes, but don’t have to deal with flies or bugs, as would be the case with open shelving.
I’ve also added cottage to the kitchen by placing all of my herbs and spices in wide mouthed glass jars. I found an old wood shelf in the garage and painted it white. Then, I hung said shelf right beside my stove, filled the jars with my herbs and placed platters that screamed cottage behind the jars. When choosing the platters, I knew I wanted one to be floral. Floral platters are wonderful cottage decorating pieces. For my second platter, I chose one whose colors complemented my floral. This wall is still waiting on bead board transformation! This was a cheap easy way I could accomplish a small piece of cottage. I already had everything I needed…more on that later.
Framing handwritten recipes from mothers or grandmothers is another inexpensive way you can obtain your cozy cottage vibe. The picture below is written by my husband’s grandmother, Mauize. I think it adds warmth and character, which is one thing that draws me to the cottage style. It makes it feel, ahh, like home.
A Few More Glimpses…
What I’m aiming for is the country cottage style which gives me a peaceful feeling. You know, like someone may experience when they see that nostalgic piece which instantly takes them back to their grandmother’s living room or a precious childhood home where they felt, well, happy!
While thrift shopping I recently found this peach and white floral chair at a thrift store for $18. Floral with a sort of fan back and showing wood legs! Yes, and thank You, Lord. The pillow is from a yard sale for 50 cents and the stool is a thrift store find for $1.50.
Speaking of thrift stores, they are your friend when you are looking for this style. A few times over the past couple of months I have mentioned that I wanted a rug for our living room. Well, about a week ago I was blessed with this rug for $20 dollars…and from a thrift store.
As you can see, we still have paneling in the living room. That is on the list to be axed, but for now, making the most of what I have.
Other decorating topics:
When I shop at the above places, VINTAGE or ANTIQUE is my preferred age style.
Vintage Floral: This can be dishes, throw pillows, furniture, and table cloths. Florals soften the room, in my humble opinion, and give it a cozy feel.
Old books: Books are dual purpose. We homeschool, so I decorate with books in all of the main living areas. Since I started this I have discovered the kids will randomly pick up a book and start reading! Makes me smile.
An example of decorating with books, I have a collection of the “Lone Ranger” books in an antique tool box pictured below.
The walls and floor still need DIY touches, but I really like this space in the sitting room.
Vintage furniture: Most of the antique/vintage chairs we obtained at auctions, ranging in price from $5-$18. They aren’t perfect, but they’re perfect for me. They have scuffs and are worn or you could say, “They have added character.”
I hope you have enjoyed this glimpse into our Cottage. I love talking about cottage decorating, let me know if you’d like more cottage posts! Leave me a comment if you’ve had success finding cottage decor at any of these or other outlets. I’d love to hear from you. Make sure to SHARE and join our community by SUBSCRIBING at the bottom.
Thanks for stopping by!
Talk to you soon,