A Christmas Cottage

Is there anything about that title that isn't enticing? A home is much cozier during the christmas season... but a cottage?? Even better.

This has always been one of my favorite articles out of Cottage Living's December issue back in 2007. 

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And it just so happens that the owner,Kitty White, lives in Birmingham in my (old) neck of the woods! Kitty decorated this adorable cottage with the help of the fabulous architect Bill Ingram and designer Betsy Brown. 

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I love her use of natural elements such as berries and birch wood for decoration. For more ideas on how to use branches to decorate click here

*The wall paint throughout is  cloud white  by Benjamin Moore.

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I love this idea: Instead of the traditional sofa/chair combo in front of a fireplace, she put four comfortable chairs around a coffee table.  

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Beautiful living room... and tree! Dang. 

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 The window panels are the opaque linen window panels from west elm! In white. 

AND the seagrass rugs are the color-bound ones from Pottery Barn

<insider tips from Cottage Living>

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TTN: the mix of materials here is genius. The rustic ceilings mixed with the classic marble countertops, the industrial light fixture mixed with the polished nickel (double**) sinks, the traditional barstools mixed with the metal backsplash behind the cooktop... the mix goes on. 

And notice what appears to be a wood cutting board in between the sinks-?? See it above? Now look at the picture below...
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Yet another clever detail that allows for mobile counterspace and easy cleaning.
 

*The floors were designed by Ingram: diamond-patterned bluestone outlined with strips of hardwood.

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A high-backed banquette and table create a small dining nook in the kitchen.   

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I love the dark trim and doors in this house. Notice the dark painted shutters in the dining room- if they were white it wouldn't be the same... Agree?

As for the walls: Kitty painted this design herself- with the help of maskingtape! (and patience, I'm sure:) And the ceiling: glossy?! Great, unexpected addition.
 
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 once again... a good mix.

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Kitty, the homeowner, now sells her own fabulous creations- from hand painted fabrics to jewelry to children's clothing! Click here to visit her designs online.

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 Lastly, in the article Kitty states: "I'd rather have a small space with beautiful finishes than a big space that compromises the details."  With the current state of the economy I think we'll see a lot of this in the upcoming years- and in my opinion it will be a pleasant change. 

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all photos from Cottage Living and Southern Living