Editors’ Picks: Our Favorite Cottage Kitchens

Cottage kitchens evoke a sense of warmth, comfort and nostalgia. With their charming farmhouse sinks, open shelving, and mix of modern and vintage elements, it’s no wonder they remain one of the most sought-after kitchen styles. We asked our editors to pick their favorite cottage kitchen designs and tell us what they love about them. From cozy cookspaces to airy, light-filled rooms, these kitchens beautifully capture the cottage spirit. Read on for our editor’s picks for the best cottage kitchen inspiration.

What Defines the Cottage Kitchen Style?

Before we dive into our favorite examples, let’s look at what defines the cottage kitchen aesthetic:

  • Vintage elements – Cottage kitchens incorporate pieces like antique cabinetry, distressed wood finishes, and retro-inspired appliances to add character.
  • Farmhouse sinks – Deep, wide farmhouse or apron-front sinks are a must in a cottage kitchen. Stainless steel and porcelain are common materials.
  • Open shelving – Visible shelves give a laidback, homey vibe and allow for displaying pretty dishware.
  • Mix of materials – Wood, stone, brick, and metal come together seamlessly in cottage kitchens. Weathered finishes are common.
  • Plenty of windows – Cottages emphasize natural light, so ample windows help achieve the bright, airy feel.
  • Pastel colors – Soft hues like sky blue, buttercream and sage green are typical palette choices to promote relaxing vibes.
  • Unfussy decor – Simple, rustic and down-to-earth describes the cottage kitchen’s signature look.

Cozy Cottage Kitchen with Vintage Finds

Jessica reveals why this cheerful space is her top cottage kitchen pick:

“I’m drawn to the cozy, welcoming vibe of this kitchen. Between the weathered cabinetry, cute window valances and vintage-style appliances, it encapsulates the charming cottage aesthetic. I love how they worked in personal collections like jelly jar glassware and plates. The warm two-tone cabinetry keeps it feeling bright but not too busy. This is a space designed for lingering, sipping tea and enjoying long chats!”

Some key features that make this a stellar cottage kitchen:

  • Light green lower cabinets with white uppers create a fresh, soothing palette
  • Distressed cabinet finishes and visible wood grains add character
  • Stainless steel farmhouse sink anchors the space
  • Open shelves lined with glasses and plates provide a homey feel
  • Vintage-look SMEG refrigerator offers retro flair
  • Pops of red and antique accessories inject personality
  • Buttery yellow walls exude warmth and happiness

This kitchen strikes the perfect balance between vintage charm and airy elegance. It provides a soothing spot to unwind and embrace the cozy cottage lifestyle.

Rustic Meets Modern Cottage Kitchen

Our editor Rose can’t get enough of this kitchen’s rustic-modern mix:

“The beautiful contrasts are what make this cottage kitchen design a standout. The organic wood table adds natural warmth, while the black Windsor chairs feel sleek and modern. I love how the brick backsplash and concrete countertops marry the industrial and rustic elements. And that vaulted ceiling! This kitchen gets everything right about bringing the outdoors in through large windows, greenery and easy access to the deck. It’s both cozy and spacious.”

Details that make this a stellar blend of modern and rustic:

  • Stacked stone and exposed brick backsplash adds texture
  • Concrete countertops offer an organic, handcrafted look
  • Black window frames, Windsor chairs and pendant lights provide modern contrast
  • Vaulted ceiling with exposed beams creates an airy, spacious feel
  • Large picture windows flood the space with natural light
  • Wood plank island on casters feels both rustic and portable
  • Built-in hutch provides beautiful display space
  • Access to the deck encourages indoor-outdoor living

With its creative mix of materials old and new, this kitchen brings contrasting elements together in perfect harmony. It clearly shows how to masterfully merge modern and rustic styles.

Timeless White Cottage Kitchen

Amanda reveals why this light and classic kitchen stands out:

“I’m drawn to the timeless, all-white color scheme of this beautiful cottage kitchen. Crisp white cabinetry paired with Carrara marble countertops creates a light and bright space that feels both airy and elegant. I love how they incorporated charming cottage elements like exposed brick, an apron front sink, open shelves and a distressed wood table. This is a kitchen meant for gathering, cooking and creating memories.”

Details that make this an all-star classic white cottage kitchen:

  • White shaker-style cabinetry keeps the space looking light and open
  • Carrara marble countertops add subtle grey veining
  • Stainless steel apron-front sink suits the cottage vibe
  • Exposed brick backsplash injects rustic charm
  • Open shelves lined with white dishes provide easy access
  • Distressed wood table creates a casual dining spot
  • Pendant lights add understated elegance
  • Large window over the sink keeps it feeling bright and airy

This kitchen offers a lesson in timeless design. The clean white palette along with strategic vintage elements results in a light-filled oasis with enduring appeal. It’s a classic look that transcends trends.

Calming Blue Cottage Kitchen

Our editor Emily can’t get enough of this dreamy blue kitchen:

“From the baby blue cabinets to the painted brick walls, this kitchen exudes a peaceful, comforting energy. The color scheme reminds me of blue skies and fluffy white clouds. I love how the wire mesh doors on the upper cabinets keep the look airy while the marble backsplash and oak floors ground it. The vintage-style details like the farmhouse sink and distressed wood table add cozy charm. It’s a cottage kitchen sure to spark joy and relaxation.”

Stand-out features of this soothing blue cottage kitchen:

  • Baby blue cabinets offer a dreamy, cloud-like palette
  • White marble backsplash and oak floors provide contrast
  • Wire mesh upper cabinet doors contribute an airy, open feel
  • Vintage-style porcelain farmhouse sink suits the cottage vibe
  • Open shelves with blue and white dishware tie in the color scheme
  • Distressed wood table injects rustic warmth
  • Painted brick walls in a weathered white add texture
  • Large window over sink keeps the room flooded with light

From its calming color palette to its charming details, this kitchen nails the charming cottage look while emanating relaxation. It’s a lovely blend of dreamy blue hues, rustic elements and cozy ambiance.

Romantic Cottage Kitchen with Vintage Character

According to our editor Emma, this kitchen exudes vintage romance:

“This kitchen feels like stepping back in time. From the distressed turquoise cabinetry to the antique-style appliances, every detail evokes vintage charm. I adore little touches like the carved corbels supporting the open shelves, the window curtain valances and the painted chandelier. The brick backsplash and oak floors provide a nice rustic juxtaposition against the soft pastel cabinetry. This kitchen convinces me to embrace my inner romantic!”

What gives this kitchen its romantic character:

  • Distressed turquoise cabinets offer a dreamy, vintage vibe
  • Stainless steel farmhouse sink provides modern function
  • Brick backsplash paired with oak floors balances rustic and feminine
  • Open shelves with carved corbels add architectural interest
  • Antique-style stove and refrigerator offer retro charm
  • Painted chandelier provides soft, diffused lighting
  • Window valances inject delicate personality
  • Fresh flowers and stacked dishes make it feel lived-in

From the dreamy color palette to the intricately decorated shelving, this kitchen goes all-in on vintage romance. Every detail transports you back in time to an era of handcrafted charm and feminine decor. It’s a look brimming with personality, nostalgia and cottage comfort.

Inviting Double-Sided Cottage Kitchen

Our editor Tyler applauds this kitchen’s double-sided practicality and charm:

“I’m smitten with the clever use of space in this cottage kitchen. The wide peninsula allows for two distinct work zones, making it highly functional. I love that they mirrored the cabinetry, sinks and appliances on each side to create visual symmetry. At the same time, it feels personal and homey with touches like open shelving lined with gorgeous dishware. The light blue cabinetry paired with the brick backsplash emanates a peaceful, relaxed vibe that encourages lingering.”

Design elements that make this double-sided kitchen ultra-functional:

  • Light blue cabinets mirrored on each side establish symmetry
  • Stainless steel apron-front sinks duplicated for convenience
  • Built-in butcher block provides extra prep space
  • Open shelves stocked with colorful cookware on display
  • Large peninsula separates the two workstations
  • Brick backsplash carried across the space for a cohesive look
  • Picture windows above both sinks keep it bright
  • Walkway through the peninsula makes navigating easy

With its efficient use of space and cozy details, this kitchen proves two work zones can feel inviting. It’s a clever blueprint for creating a highly-functional kitchen with personal cottage flair.

Complementary Color Cottage Kitchen

Jacob appreciates how the colors work together in this vibrant cottage kitchen:

“This kitchen immediately caught my eye for its playful use of color. The peach, teal and mustard yellow cabinetry feels bright and cheery against the dark wood ceiling beams. I like how the colors complement each other while injecting fun, vibrant personality. The white brick backsplash ties the scheme together and keeps it feeling light. I also love the mix of modern touches like the stainless appliances combined with vintage elements like the farmhouse sink. This kitchen has a lively spirit!”

Creative color choices make this cottage kitchen stand out:

  • Peach, teal and mustard yellow base cabinets add playful personality
  • White brick backsplash provides a light contrast
  • Dark wood ceiling beams ground the vibrant hues
  • Stainless steel appliances inject modern style
  • Porcelain farmhouse sink offers cottage character
  • Open shelving displays cheery dishware
  • Patterned curtains frame the window over the sink
  • Distressed wood table adds rustic warmth

This kitchen proves that complementary colors can come together to create a space that’s both lively and cohesive. The mix of personal style, function and charm makes this a place you want to be.

Airy Cottage Kitchen with Light Wood Cabinets

Our editor Hannah emphasizes the breezy elegance of this light-filled kitchen:

“This kitchen immediately struck me with its airy, spacious feel. The light wood cabinets paired with the brick backsplash make it feel so fresh and bright. I love how they incorporated plenty of windows, including the large one over the farmhouse sink. Touches like the distressed wood island, hanging mason jars and cottage-style curtains infuse rustic personality. This is a cottage kitchen that beautifully merges light, vintage and sophistication.”

Design elements that make this kitchen breezy and beautiful:

  • Light wood cabinets create an airy, spacious look
  • Exposed brick backsplash adds tactile rustic charm
  • Extra large window over farmhouse sink maximizes light
  • Wood beam details across the ceiling add character
  • Distressed wood kitchen island on casters feels functional
  • Open shelving lined with hanging mason jars provides cottage flair
  • Gauzy cream curtains soften the windows and tie in the color scheme
  • White dishes displayed on open shelves keep the room feeling bright

With its creative use of light, windows, and vintage-inspired details, this kitchen embodies breezy cottage elegance. It blends sophistication with small-town charm in one tranquil oasis.

Eclectic Cottage Kitchen with Statement Pieces

James appreciates the character-rich mix of old and new in this kitchen:

“What I love about this kitchen is how every piece tells a story. From the reclaimed wood island to the retro SMEG refrigerator, the antiques and vintage finds make this space feel curated and personal. At the same time, modern elements like the marble backsplash, black window frames and pendant lighting keep it current. This is a kitchen that comfortably embraces old and new in perfect harmony.”

Stand-out details that make this cottage kitchen special:

  • Reclaimed wood kitchen island adds rustic warmth
  • Carrara marble backsplash injects modern elegance
  • Stainless steel farmhouse sink suits the cottage vibe
  • Black window frames provide contemporary contrast
  • Retro SMEG refrigerator offers a pop of color
  • Open shelves lined with antique cake stands and distressed boxes
  • Pendant lights over the island contribute an industrial touch
  • Plentiful windows make it airy and sunlit

This kitchen celebrates the beauty found in imperfection. The seamless blend of reclaimed wood, marble, antiques and handcrafted pieces results in an eclectic look brimming with character and cottage charm.

Relaxed Scandinavian Cottage Kitchen

Our editor Olivia is drawn to the laidback vibe of this Scandinavian-inspired kitchen:

“This kitchen exudes an effortless simplicity that feels so inviting and livable. The light wood cabinetry paired with black accents creates a crisp, unfussy look – quintessentially Scandinavian design. Elements like the exposed brick backsplash, concrete countertops and rattan pendants add organic contrast in a minimalist way. This is a space that prioritizes function and everyday living with just the right dose of charm.”

Details that make this kitchen brilliantly Scandinavian:

  • Light wood cabinetry keeps the look airy and bright
  • Black window frames and hardware provide modern contrast
  • Exposed brick backsplash adds rustic texture
  • Concrete countertops offer an organic, industrial vibe
  • Wood plank shelves provide open storage
  • Rattan pendant lights inject natural flair
  • White dishware complements the muted color scheme
  • Extra wide apron sink is sized for functionality
  • Large window over sink maximizes natural light

This kitchen shows how Scandinavian style can be seamlessly merged with cottage elements. With its focus on minimalism, practicality and laidback charm, this is a space designed for real life in the most inviting way.

Ultimate Cottage Kitchen Inspiration

After browsing our editor’s top picks, one thing is clear – there is no single formula for the perfect cottage kitchen. From soothing color palettes to personal collections of antiques, it’s all about infusing creativity, rustic warmth and vintage finds into a space you want to spend time in. These curated kitchens show how easy it is to blend the old and new to create a forever home that tells your unique story. With a bit of cottage inspiration, you’re sure to end up with a kitchen that nurtures the senses and stands the test of time.

Questions Homeowners Often Ask About Cottage Kitchens

Q: What size should a cottage kitchen be?

A: Cottage kitchens are often smaller in size to feel cozy and intimate. However, there are many spacious cottage kitchen examples with room for multiple cooks thanks to clever layouts. Focus on creating defined work zones and adequate counter space rather than size alone.

Q: What backsplash styles work best in cottage kitchens?

A: Brick and stone backsplashes are classic choices to infuse organic texture. White subway tile also pairs beautifully with cottage cabinetry. Wood plank backsplashes offer a rustic accent. Choose materials that complement your cabinetry to create a cohesive look.

Q: What colors should I choose for my cottage kitchen?

A: Soothing neutral colors like white, light blue and sage green are common in cottage kitchens. But don’t be afraid to get creative with complementary colors like peach and robin’s egg blue for a cheery ambiance. Soft pastels and muted earth tones help create a welcoming vibe.

Q: How do I add character to my new cottage kitchen?

A: Incorporate vintage or antique pieces like an old cabinet or farmhouse table. Visit antiques stores and salvage yards to find hidden gems. Display collections like pitchers or cake stands on open shelves. Add architectural interest with corbels, ceiling beams or a brick backsplash. Use textiles like curtains and rugs to make the space feel lived-in.

Q: What flooring works best for the cottage look?

A: Wood flooring can add warm, rustic appeal to a cottage kitchen. Materials like pine or oak have natural graining that pairs well with distressed cabinetry. For a more modern but cozy look, opt for wood-look luxury vinyl plank flooring which is durable and easy to clean.

Q: Should I use an apron front or farmhouse sink?

A: While very similar, an apron front sink has a front panel that hides the sink’s body. Farmhouse sinks have an exposed front. Both suit the cottage look beautifully. Choose between stainless steel, enameled cast iron or fireclay based on your aesthetic preference and budget.

Q: How do I decide on open shelving vs. cabinetry?

A: Open shelving introduces cottage flair and allows displaying pretty dishware. But it also requires keeping things tidy. For a compromise, do open shelves just on one wall or upper cabinets only. Closed cabinetry offers concealed storage but opt for glass fronts to maintain visual airiness.

Q: What types of lighting work well in cottage kitchens?

A: Pendant lights add charm over islands and sinks. Recessed lighting provides ambient illumination. For task lighting, try sconces or under-cabinet fixtures. Lanterns offer both form and function. Prioritize plenty of natural light. Dimmer switches allow adjusting light levels.

Enhancing Cottage Kitchen Style On a Budget

Achieving the charming cottage look doesn’t have to break the bank. Here are budget-friendly ways to infuse cozy style into your kitchen:

  • Sand and paint existing cabinetry for a distressed finish.
  • Search Facebook Marketplace, Craigslist or thrift stores for vintage dining sets and cottage-style lighting.
  • Use a stencil and sample pots of paint to create a patterned backsplash on existing tile.