• Janell Bartlett

Achieving Modern Cabin




One of my most favorite projects of this year was helping a good friend/client of mine decorate their family cabin. It was such a challenging project but so much fun! (I'll post pictures of the before and after in another post).


When she reached out to me, I had to admit, I had not done 'cabin' before. I actually had no idea what I was going to do. She said she wanted cozy and inviting but didn't want it to look like a "hunter's man cave'". "Well ok" I said and got to searching for inspiration for a mood board.


However, when I started my search, I noticed that there's a huge difference between 'grown-up' cabin décor and what I was finding when I just did a Google search on Cabin Décor (I don't recommend it!).


Yikes!!! (To caveat, there is absolutely nothing wrong with most of these pieces individually)


The problem is there's a lot of horrible, childish, and down-right ugly cabin décor out there! In my search, I found terrible mix-matched plaid, overdone farmhouse/rustic, and items that fit better in a Christmas store or a children's nursery (looking at you Hobby Lobby!!) -- not the look we were going for.


Living in Colorado where there are tons of cute cabins, there has to be a better way!!!


But before we dig into how to do this style, let's first define cabin style. No, it's not just farmhouse and Americana rustic, all pine furniture, or a bunch of matching bedroom bedding sets and plaid quilts with pictures of bears and deer (although those pieces will fit in right at home in a cabin if used correctly). Cabin style is a cozy, comfortable style with roots in nature.


Here's some great examples:


Don't these just make you want to put on some comfy sweats, make yourself some hot chocolate, and curl up with your favorite book? That's the feeling a cozy cabin should invoke!


So, ok, how to do you do it? Well first, its about bringing in sights, sounds, and textures of the great outdoors. Mix and match patterns and textures (this is where you can bring in SOME log furniture/cute animal quilts), displaying vintage pieces and found treasures (bring in some farmhouse/rustic), and cute accessories like wood baskets, candles, leather, faux fur, and dark metals. There's even a place for your uncle's old dear head if you can want.


Oh, and paint. 'Moody' is the first word that comes to my mind. Here's some great examples of modern cabin paint colors that I found:


The key I found was not to overdo anything (it's that the key to any design?). I originally bought a ton of plaid throw blankets and realized that was just way too much plaid. Then I purchased way too many farmhouse items and nursery-like animal prints. Opps! It really just takes balance.


But what also killed me was the cost of this style. When I really started looking, most everything in those pictures above is ridiculously expensive. For most of us, if we are like my friend and actually have a log cabin in the middle of an aspen forest 2 miles up a dirt road, we don't get to stay there very often and therefore don't have the money to spend $$$ of fur throw pillows. Nor do we want to worry about the nieces/nephews bringing in the mud from the nearby stream onto the $$$ leather couch. (--Or if you have no cabin at all, these might be pieces that you change out with your 'normal' decor to bring in a nice fall/winter vibe and don't want to spend $$$ on something that spends 10 months in the closest)


Either way, with some inspiration, you can create a cozy space with the unique charm of a cabin. ...and you know what?...you can actually find quite a few pieces that are very reasonably priced on Amazon. So let's start!!


Here's 14 things I found on Amazon to give you that modern cabin:


1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14


What I like about these pieces is that none of them by themselves scream "CABIN"!!! But all together they meet all of the suggestions I recommended above. There's many different textures, moody colors, and elements from nature. And, none of them are overly expensive so if your uncle breaks it with his fishing pole, no harm.


As always, thanks for reading and please do reach out if I can help you in any of your decorating projects. Till next time!


Janell; Amble & Awe Interiors.




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