How to Pick Out Distressed Cottage Furniture

Distressed cottage furniture is characterized by color shades that look faded by the sun: white, soft blue, light tan, sage green and pale pink. It also has dulled or flaked paint spots where wear and tear would naturally age it through years of use. Most distressed furniture today has been antiqued with paintwork, sandpaper and lacquer to achieve this aged look. To add a rustic cottage look to your decor, follow these tips for picking out distressed cottage furniture.

Choose Simple Shapes

Most distressed cottage furniture is in simple rectangles, cubes and squares. You will rarely find a distressed corner cabinet or buffet. Distressed side tables, end tables and kitchen work tables will usually have a naturally finished pine or maple top rather than white. People who built this furniture over 100 years ago had basic carpentry skills to make solid, functional furniture. Avoid distressed furniture that has fancy curved or cabriole legs, bowed drawer fronts, or scroll-edged mirrors.

Select Pieces in Good Condition

Whether you find them at a garage sale, country auction or flea market, ensure your distressed furniture is in good, usable condition. Don't waste your money on damaged goods. Look for sturdy, safe construction and well-preserved finishes and colors.