Creating the Cottagecore Look

A guide to achieving one of the biggest aesthetics on social media—but at what cost?


Art by Zina Zhang


You wake up at an ungodly hour to milk the cows and get fresh eggs. You then forage into your five-acre garden to pick the freshest produce. Next, you start painstakingly making at least seven beautiful tarts to bake for breakfast. You check on your thirty dogs, twenty cats, and ten birds before slipping into your ridiculously expensive and pretty—but still simple—dress made of 100% cotton. Pulling out an elegant set of china, you set the table with fancy silverware and platters with the food perfectly centered. At last, you stare outside of your cottage window and voilá—a perfect cottagecore breakfast!

Of course, most people who enjoy the popular cottagecore aesthetic will not strictly follow this routine every waking moment of their life. Categorizing ways of life with certain ‘rules’ to fit certain ‘aesthetics’ can be somewhat silly, but nonetheless, can also be lighthearted and fun especially for teenagers who are still figuring out their style.

Art by Alexandra Ma

Cottagecore is often quite appealing to the teenage demographic, myself included. Perhaps it is from the pressure of school or capitalism requiring us to work to live, but cottagecore can be an escape from an urban mechanized life to a simple, peaceful one with time to enjoy hobbies like spending time in nature and baking.

The most prominent feature of the cottagecore aesthetic is the food. Baking goods from scratch is very popular, as is serving them alongside drinks like tea. Meals are simple and light, consisting of foods like sandwiches or quiches.

Of course, the setting is in a simple cottage, as suggested by the name, with plain, older styles of clothes and fashion to match. This may include long pastel or patterned dresses, flowing blouses, overalls, and shirts with puffy sleeves. In the same simple spirit, hairstyles usually consists of loose buns with ribbons or cloth hairbands as decoration. Minimal makeup or jewelry are used.

Art by Grace Muma

Cottagecore also has a close connection with appreciating and being around nature. This may include activities such as picnicking, gardening, or simply wandering outside in the great outdoors.

In the end, it is highly fascinating for teenagers to try and find their style by testing different aesthetics including the ethereal cottagecore aesthetic. However, it is also important for our age group to know that unlike what social media suggests, no one can realistically fit into any of these categories perfectly; comparison and exclusivity have no room in this cottage! Otherwise, enjoy your tea time and save me a piece of that tart.