What is the difference between cottagecore and forestcore?

what is the difference between cottagecore and forestcore interior design?

Yes, it is possible to step into a room and feel like you were transported into a fairytale. And yes, it can be a room INSIDE YOUR VERY HOME. That’s the magic of themes like cottagecore and forestcore. But wait a sec, are they even the same thing? (Hint: No, they’re not). While you’ve probably […]

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October 12, 2023


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Yes, it is possible to step into a room and feel like you were transported into a fairytale.

And yes, it can be a room INSIDE YOUR VERY HOME.

That’s the magic of themes like cottagecore and forestcore. But wait a sec, are they even the same thing? (Hint: No, they’re not).

what is the difference between cottagecore and forestcore?

While you’ve probably heard of cottagecore before— the nostalgic, vintage, feminine essence of a slow-living cottage, you probably haven’t heard of forestcore, because it’s a relatively new (and pretty niche) concept.

In these parts at VG, we’re all about finding those little niche trends and bringing them into our homes, especially if they add a sense of comfort to your lifestyle so you can thrive in everything you do. So let’s get into it!

Unraveling the Mystique of Cottagecore Interior Design

cottagecore dining area white curtains

Cottagecore is all about celebrating the simple, rustic life of the countryside. Think of it as a romanticized take on rural living, with a touch of nostalgia.

With its roots in the idyllic depiction of rural life, cottagecore started gaining traction online (consciously or subconsciously) to rebel against city life and instead share dreams of escaping modern life for a simpler, bygone era.

Key features

  • Natural fabrics like linen, lace, and cotton.
  • Soft, muted color palettes like creamy whites, pastels, and earthy tones.
  • Vintage furniture wooden pieces, distressed finishes, and cozy seating options.
  • Decorative elements like dried flowers, vintage crockery, cross-stitched patterns, and candles galore.


  • Encourages a slow, mindful living
  • Evokes feelings of warmth and comfort
  • Easily customizable with vintage and thrifted finds (i.e. not hella expensive to start if you’re not afraid to be a little crafty!)


  • Might feel a bit too feminine or old-fashioned for some
  • Requires careful curation to avoid looking too cluttered too fast
  • Could look a little rickety if you don’t pair it with some modern touches like hardware and some furniture pieces

cottagecore kitchen green walls with flowers on table
cottagecore white linen bedside with vintage cabinet and mirror and flowers

Related: 7 steps to nail your cottagecore house interior vibe

Delving Into the Depths of Forestcore Interior Design

Forestcore draws inspiration from the serene, untamed beauty of the woods. Rooted in the love for woodlands, Forestcore has a touch of mysticism and became popularized by nature lovers seeking a deep connection with the earth, often showcased in photos of misty forests and woodland wanderings.

Key features

  • Natural elements and materials like raw wood, stone, and moss features.
  • Deep natural colors like greens, browns, grays, and other earthy tones.
  • Furniture pieces like rustic wood, hammocks, low seating, and anything that feels earthy and grounded.
  • Real nature as decor, like terrariums, botanical prints, and potted plants like wide ferns and tall fiddle-leaf figs.


  • Creates a calming, grounding environment.
  • Perfect for those who seek a deeper connection with nature.
  • Versatile and can be blended with other styles.


  • Can be a tad dark or moody for some spaces, particularly those that don’t have much sunlight.
  • Needs a balance to ensure it doesn’t become too thematically heavy.
  • Could come off as tacky if you’re being too literal with the forest themes.

forestcore living room tall ceilings tall windows, hanging lights, green couch, forestcore forest tapestry
forestcore bedroom with gray bedding, green blanket, forest view, mirror over bed, hanging plants
forestcore reading nook beige and wood with bookshelf

Related: What is the alternative style to cottagecore?

Cottagecore + Forestcore =✨

Okay, so while Cottagecore and Forestcore might sound like they’re worlds apart (or at least a few forests apart), there are some oh-so-enchanting similarities that connect their vibes.

And in these parts, we don’t really fall under one certain interior design style or other— we’re all about mixing and matching to find what sparks joy for you.

So if you love both of these styles, how can you combine them into one of your own?

  • Let nature be your muse. Both styles are all about that organic, back-to-the-roots feeling, whether it’s a sunny meadow or a mysterious woodland, so let plants, biophilic designs, and nature-inspired wallpapers and colors be your muse, whether that’s through lighter, gentler Cottagecore, or deeper, moodier Forestcore.
  • Serenity and solitude: both these aesthetics are about finding peace and tranquility, so consider what this means for you. From a design perspective, it’s usually about simple furniture pieces, simple wall colors, and a neat, clean, organized space so you can enjoy your space without an overly maximalistic vibe. Consider Marie Kondo-ing your space to get rid of things that don’t spark joy so it’s even easier for you to declutter.
  • Lean in on tiny but mighty decor. Whether it’s Cottagecore vintage tea sets or Forestcore mini terrariums lining your staircase, there’s something to say about pieces that are smaller but not cluttered. If designed correctly, you can use a few small, simple decor pieces to elevate an entire room.

Choose Cottagecore if…

  • You love soft, nostalgic vibes: If you’re dreaming of English countryside getaways, picnics, and daisy chains, Cottagecore might be your go-to.
  • You have a smaller, cozy space: With its emphasis on warmth and comforting elements, Cottagecore might fit like a glove in compact spaces that beckon intimate gatherings and quiet moments.
  • You feel at home when you’re in a cottage or your grandma’s home. No, I’m not talking about grandmacore (quite yet), but cottagecore certainly has an old-world charm vibe.

Choose Forestcore if…

  • You love mystical, deep nature connections: If you resonate with ancient woods, moonlit nights, and the enchanting whispers of nature, Forestcore might just be your aesthetic soulmate.
  • You have a larger room and/or a nice window that could use a dark, dramatic wall. Smaller spaces usually sink in with darker shades (although that’s never stopped me from going moody), so if you’re ready to go moody, lean in on forestcore vibes.
  • You’re open to literal forest imagery. I mean, like, forest wallpaper or patterns, green rugs, tall plants. If you want to transform your space into a real forest, you’re basically ready for forestcore.

Here’s one last golden nugget for you— whether you’re leaning more towards the rustic charm of a countryside cottage or the deep allure of ancient woodlands, remember that design is a dance between the heart and the home, and ultimately, you don’t have to choose.

Let your unique rhythm shine, and perhaps don’t tell anyone what design style you ended up choosing. Because honestly? It doesn’t really matter in the end, as long as it’s serving your lifestyle.





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What is the difference between cottagecore and forestcore?


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