An Ode to Cottage Living Magazine

What do you think is behind these unassuming magazine holders?
Every issue of Cottage Living, from the very first issue in September of 2004 to the last Nov/Dec issue of 2008. They hold a place of honor in my nicest holders on the living room shelves. And they did not leave during the living room makeover.
As you may suspect from the name of my blog, this magazine was dear to my heart and I loved every one of these and read them cover to cover. Numerous times.
I’ve gotten many magazines over the years (too many? *ahem* maybe…) and only felt the need to save one other, Do It Yourself, mainly because of the tutorials and information in them.
Cottage Living was the only one I saved just for the content. It spoke straight to me and all the things I enjoy: simple and hands-on decorating, reusing, gardening, and even cooking.
There were always too many things to tear out, so I just had to keep them and find a place for them.
Cottage Living
Simple window treatments. Warm, happy colors. Sink in and put-your-feet-up furniture. Mixing in things you inherited from grandma.
And all within the realm of possibility, cost-wise and ability-wise.
Cottage Living

White cupboards. wood counters. Stainless appliances and accents. Lots of windows.
And kitchen islands. Oh, how I wish I had room for a cool kitchen island that used to be a table.
I’ve not found any magazine to match, though I still get Country Living which occasionally comes close.
So I find myself every once in awhile grabbing a cup of tea, and curling up on my sink-in-and-put-my-feet-up couch and losing myself in these past issues.
And I’m inspired again. It’s not much, but it works for me.
Anyone else miss this magazine? Have old issues? Please tell me I’m not the only one!





  1. says

    I miss Cottage Living magazine!! I loved that magazine and wish I had the whole collection like you do. It was so inspiring.

    I enjoy your blog. I’ve been working on creating a cottage-like atmosphere in our home: simple, clean, uncluttered, welcoming. We’re getting there!

  2. says

    I felt the same way about “Victory” magazine when it went out of print. Happily, I was able to get most all of the back issues for 10 cents each at a library book sale. I noticed a ton of “cottage living” magazines there. You might check your local library sale.

  3. says

    My husband and I went to the beach this summer and I found a bunch of these at a thrift store for 25 cents apiece. Not only were they great beach reading, but I love looking back through them for inspiration!

  4. says

    Jen-I’m glad to meet another cottage-lover. :-)

    Lynn & Arielle- I love finding great items at sales, too! (but I don’t really need 2 copies of the magazine, I’m not that in love with it! 😉

    Kathleen- thanks for stopping by and hope you get to try the waffles.

  5. says

    This post brings tears to my eyes! I have all of my Cottage Livings too. Funny how even now when I look at them, they don’t seem dated at all, just good timeless design and inspiration. I’m so glad that yours have a good home now which gives me the nudge to get some of those nice little holders. Have a great day!

  6. says

    I also have many of the cottage living magazines and was sad to see it go. Another one I really miss is Home Companion. As a fellow Oregonian I have enjoyed checking in with your blog every so often:) Thanks!

  7. says

    Ooooo…write me down as another Cottage Living admirer! (and Do It Yourself as well…funny)

    I’m striving to turn my house into a lovely little cottage as well so I’ve saved several of their issues as inspiration and some days I spend several hours lost in daydreams of an organized, simple cottage life. …sigh…

  8. Anonymous says

    Add me to the list as well! OH how I deeply miss Cottage Living Magazine and Life Just Right. Nothing else compares, if I could I would climb into the pages of that magazine a live there forever! Please, Please bring this back!

  9. Worker Bee says

    I am amazed I found your blog but I was looking for information about 1 issue of Cottage Living Magazine in particular. I have a picture of the cover but do not know the month (date) of the issue. I figured if I just had that info I could find out about the paint colors used on the cottage on the cover. Can I send you a link on picasa to a picture of the cover? Maybe you know at least the issue date?

  10. treasurehunterclub says

    I love this magazine. I found some at a thrift shop and felt sorry for the person who got rid of them. They are timeless inspiration specially for a recycle artist as myself.

  11. says

    I loved that magazine too! I love my Country Livings from the early 2000’s — they had the same inspiring “make-do” eclecticism. I do subscribe currently, but the content isn’t as good as it was. But those Cottage Livings! I am asking for a full set for my birthday. :)

      • says

        I believe I have a complete set of that great magazine, too. Just today I was trying to decide if I
        could possibly part with them. Hubby would love it if I did. I decided to Google the title
        and found this blog. I happily read some of the comments to hubby and he said, “Do what you want.” He always says that. He’s a perfect man. Also, he was born and raised in Oregon!
        I am keeping those mags. Now I just have to find a good place to put them. Let’s see……if I move some things around and put all my old children’s books in a different spot I might be able to fit my magazines on the bookshelves. That’s the perfect answer. Then I will be able to see them
        easily and pull one out from time to time to reread. Thanks!

  12. Anonymous says

    ha! I also have ALL my Cottage Living magazines! I don’t even have a cottage! I love, love, love those magazines, they were exactly how I wanted to decorate and live life =) I was so upset when they stopped publishing…I mean of all the magazines out there, please don’t stop my favourite one!!aarrgghh! Nice to know others feel the same way =)

      • Bettie Tuck says

        I agree. Cottage Living will remain my all time favorite. The publishers substituted Coastal Living but since I live five hours away from any coast, I cancelled.

    • Sunny says

      Hello! I’ve just come across this blog. I miss Cottage Living too. I’ve been desperately looking for an article from one that was most likely in one from the 1st half of 2008 (could have been ’07). I’ve scoured the web and can’t find it. It is the “Dear Cottage Living” article from the last page–the Hoyte Johnson Curb Appeal ideas. Could you help me? What I’m looking for is the home where (I think) the bottom floor is half underground. It has a big window on the right. The makeover shows a patio with a fountain in front of that window. I would be most grateful you could assist me in finding this! If possible to scan the article, please email to Thank you!!!- Sunny

      • Margaret says

        The March, 2008 issue has a Hoyte Johnson makeover house that looks the way you described. I have an extra copy if you haven’t found it elsewhere.

  13. kysmikfoo says

    Count me among the fans. I have all but the first 5 issues, which I hope I will come across somewhere. Like the rest of you, I have not found another magazine so completely satisfying. I would read it from cover-to-cover, repeatedly, studying the photos until the next issue arrived. I agree with Rene. They are so timeless. They still seem current when I reread mine. The “new” (best of)cottage living magazine is such a tease. For a split second, until I get it in my hands(AND see the price), I think “oh, my gosh, they brought it back!”

  14. Shannon says

    Best magazine ever. I still have most of mine too. I was so sad when it ended. I haven’t found anything that compares.

  15. ndc says

    I agree completely…there were always too many things to tear out. And that they don’t feel dated at all…like Renee said, just good design. Glad to know I’m not the only one reading my old issues!

  16. Virginia says

    I saved mine for years, but moving to a small house, they had to go. Now on my 3rd. Residence, maybe on to building a fourth. I regret not having them! Was a well produced publication. I have a book, The Not So Small House. It takes away some of the pangs. Sarah’s house on HGTV, briefly, on to short a time, was good too.

  17. Faith says

    I miss Cottage Living so much! I moved into my 1000 sq ft old cottage following a divorce and this magazine was opened up a whole new world of creativity for me. I held onto them for several years in nice storage boxes, but alas, small space living eventually got me to throw them out. I regret it. I had looked at them so many times I thought I had every image and detail memorized and couldn’t possibly glean anything more. But now, I would LOVE to look again with fresh eyes. They were inspirational and had so many ideas that were not over the top for a modest budget.

  18. Karen says

    I accidently found this site and I too have all of my Cottage Living magazines from the very first issue until to the very last. I was also so disappointed to see this magazine go. In this world of bigger is better I really enjoyed the smaller homes and less materialistic way of life. The homes presented in the magazine had so much character and lot of architectural detail. I love that!

  19. Greta Wallace says

    Hi Jami! I am so glad that you are here…I have been trying to get copies of my garden design article from May/June 2007…Greta Glab Wallace garden, in Evanston, Illinois. I had the choice to be in Cottage Living or Better Homes and Gardens and I chose Cottage Living for their visual appeal…Much more beautiful and as you said…wonderful articles…..I have not been able to contact anybody, but the New York Photographer. They came out with a one time publication, last year…”Best Cottage Gardens” and I was shocked to see that my garden was on the front cover! I am battling health problems and public ignorance (city codes) , as I try to restore prairie and build an artist’s retreat on our 4 acre property in Dubuque, Iowa…I really need to be able to show people a copy of this magazine! Thank you for sharing! Sincerely, Greta Wallace, 847-910-0474, 995 Clarke Drive, Dubuque, Iowa 52001

  20. Ren says

    Nope you are not the only one. I just got one of those “please buy magazines” to support out Girl Scouts from my niece. I was looking for Cottage Living. Sad to hear they stopped printing it. I got a year subscription from some one a couple of years ago, I still to this day have no idea of who got it for me. I could never downsize enough for most of those cottages, but it was nice eye candy. But, I really loved browsing thru it.

  21. Marcia says

    I am looking for an article that was in Cottage Living. I have no idea which issue or year. I’m guessing that it was 2007 or 2008. It was about a cottage in Montgomery, Alabama on Country Club Drive. Noni Haigler got Architect Ken Pursley to update her house with a back porch and master bedroom and bath. We are looking to buy this house and I would love to see the article. Please let me know if any of y’all who have the complete collection see this article. Thanks!

  22. Shane says

    I was working at a small private school making too small a salary. I lived in a 1200 square foot house built in 1853. Times were tough, but my one splurge was issues of Cottage Living. Thanks to the ideas from the magazine my house was the envy of all who visited. I was sad when they stopped printing it. I miss the magazine; I miss the the little house.

  23. Beverly says

    Tried everywhere to find the issue of Cottage Living Magazine that featured a rustic home in Oregon (I believe). A couple worked with an architect and built it (on a lake I think). I loved the magazine and the layout of that house. It had a wooden front door that had a little door that opened so you could look out. A canoe hanging from the ceiling. The living room had a large fireplace made of native stone. There was a separate but attached “bunk” house for guests connected by an area that had a pantry. Any help in identifying what issue this house appeared in would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

  24. Margaret says

    I am another mourner for this magazine and I’m trying to buy all the back issues. I haven’t succeeded yet but I hope to get there. I find them as current as anything else I read, and certainly better than all the others. If it weren’t for Heather Chadduck’s kitchen in Alabama, I never would have remodeled my kitchen the way I did. I’ll look for the articles people want, but it may take a while. I have a few duplicates which I’ve considered selling but haven’t done it yet, so if anyone is looking for particular issues, I might have a duplicate I could let go of.

    • says

      That’s a generous offer, Margaret – thank you! I love pretty much all of Heather Chadduck’s stuff and I’m glad I see her here and there still, but I miss the regularity of Cottage Living. Still can’t believe they haven’t brought it back. :(

  25. Margaret says

    This is a followup. To those looking for specific houses, there is a website I found through Google that shows a whole lot of CL house plans.
    I put in Cottage Living House Plans and it came up quickly

  26. Jim says

    My wife and I are designing our new house. In my notes, she said she wanted the house in Cottage Living Jan/Feb 2008, Page 130. Does anyone have this issue available? I’d like to be able to surprise her.

  27. Dee says

    Hi there,
    I used to browse and pick up copies of Cottage Living at the drugstore, don’t think I ever subscribed before they folded. What a shame…. I still recall one designer’s work I connected to. She was from/ lived in the Pacific Northwest? Her room (s) had very bold combinations of marine scenes (painting) with modernist and traditional furniture elements–all bold. Her colors were muted, greys, blues, chunky whites. I can’t recall more specifics, but I wish I could see the photo of that room again…if this rings a bell, thanks for letting me know the issue, maybe I can find/photocopy….!

  28. Dee says

    PS the eclectic living room I mention in the CL article about the Pacific Coast Designer may also have had a rustic stone fireplace over which hung the marine painting, as well as a very chunky long white coffee table? Sketchy memory…it was a while ago!

  29. says

    I am searching for a cottage living magazine that had a pet bed made from a suitcase in it. I dont know the year but I was told there was one – I need to find it for a lawsuit I am involved in. A woman copied my design and took out a patent and had me and many others beds taken off she is suing me for posting beds and I am fighting back along with others. Can you look thru your issue and see if you can find any? If I can get get the date and the issue and scan the page for me – I can see if I can purchase it somewhere to show that these beds were made for years before she took out a patent which will invalidate the patent and allow us all to sell again. Thanks so much in advance! Just let me know if you can find it or not – have a wonderful day!
    XXOO annamarie

    • says

      Sorry, AnnaMarie – do you have any idea the year even? I have about 40 issues and it would take a LOT of time to look through them all searching for a pet bed. I wonder if Google could supply with a month or year?

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