The Witch’s Cottage: Goth Home Decoration Part One-The First Steps

Ok, so this may just be a way for me to procrastinate the Sewing Steampunk series, but I thought this would be a good series to start, as I’m starting to collect and plan how to decorate my future home. Of course as I’m a witch, there will be some witchy delights like altars, witches with broomsticks, lots of brooms, crystals, and plants which will all be absorbed into this new series “The Witch’s Cottage: Goth Home Decoration!”

So the first step, I believe, in home decoration of any kind is to write a list of all the things you wish your home to be. For me that means a home that reflects my love of the morbid, my love of nature, my love of the occult and my love of anything particularly pretty and weird. My home needs to reflect my personality, my tastes and interests, and most of all it must be a place where I feel safe and “at home”, as for a Taurean, security is as important as being surrounded by pretty things.

Once this list of what you want your home to be is made (in your head, on paper, in an artwork or whatever floats your boat), it is time to move on to looking for pictures of your dream home. This could be anything from the entire “Practical Magic” house to a kitchen from here and a table from there. The key here is to make a collage or a tester of your dream home. I have started this, but have not been able to make a nice portfolio of it due to the shocking price of ink :P. These images come mostly from my favourite inspirations, Practical Magic, Etsy goodies (both witchy and gothic), Goth blogs, 365 days of Halloween, as well as this book on making curtains my mother gave me.

I’m taking inspiration from anything spooky, kooky, witchy and of course affordably pretty.

The next thing to be decided upon are colours and patterns, materials and price. My main colour is of course black, but with plenty of accents. The materials I’m opting for are cheaper versions of leather and suede (of course the fact that the cheaper versions are not animal are awesome). Taffeta, and satin are things which often cost a pretty penny, but luckily for me, my mum made lovely black and purple satin curtains years ago for the lounge and bedroom, which she has given to me to use.  I like lacy patterns and arabesques, as well as traditionally Gothic architecture-inspired pieces like cast iron swirls, and gargoyles.

As I’m someone who has just finished university and trying to find my way in the big, bad world, I cannot be buying Russel Hobbs this, and Mahogany antique that. I have to be practical, which means bargain buys, wholesale shops, homemade DIY efforts and if I’m lucky flea market and thrift store finds. I’m lucky in that I have things already like two bookshelves (which need a makeover), a desk, a bed, a beautiful cleopatra seat, some round tables, a wardrobe and storage boxes.

Late last year, I bought myself a lovely 4 in 1 printer (scan, fax, copy, print), and gladly they had it in black, like my laptop. I like to keep things simple and elegant, I’m sure everyone who reads this blog knows, I’m not a pink person, and black is always simple and elegant (which is why, IMO, goth comes into fashion every-so-often). I needed this printer as it is cheaper (surprisingly) to print your own thesis than have it printed at the university. I looked for a semi-cheap option, as I don’t want a piece of trash that will break after three uses, nor do I want to put down a lay-buy to be able to purchase it. This is the way I look at most of the things I buy, affordable but not so cheap that it looks cheap and will be a piece of cheap garbage, but nothing that I cannot afford on my own.

My tables (my altar and side table) are of the incredibly cheap type, but they do their job, and can be painted nicely. And if they break can be replaced or fixed without too much hassle. Table cloths are easy to make, just get some black cloth in whatever material will be easy to clean and/or with a pretty motif, and overlock the edges to prevent fraying and voila!

I used to have couches but they were leather and my cat decided that having a wizz in the button-hole spaces would be a good idea, and she ruined them beyond repair so I decided to get ottomans, as they’re small, affordable and cute. I have one red one and two black costing a total of R200 (some places sell them for R200 apiece). At least now when I move in to my own apartment I’ll have something to sit on, and they will be to my taste. The truth about having your own home is that you can decorate it the way you want to, you don’t need to follow other people’s guidelines about “no bats dangling in the lounge” or other such stuff unless of course your landlord poses restrictions). Of course I do not want a room-mate and eventually my boyfriend and I will live together, but luckily he likes classical and elegant (even though he says my apartment will look like it’s Halloween everyday- and what’s wrong with that :D) and is fine with many of my ideas.

Other colours I’m including other than red and black, are blue, white and black for the kitchen, red, black and silver for the lounge, my room will be pretty much the same as it has been for a long time (pink or purple curtains) black and green. The bathroom I haven’t decided upon yet, but I do have black towels :). Of course there will be earthy elements everywhere, but they will hopefully complement what I’ve decided upon. As I’m an artist I will supply my own art pieces for the walls, along with a framed poster or two from some of my favourite fantasy artists. My father’s posters of Jim Morrison, Jimmy Hendrix and Forever 27 will probably go somewhere in the lounge area if I have space.

Most of my decisions so far, are pretty big, and I hopefully will be able to implement them, if I can’t it’s not a train-smash though as long as I’m buying things because I truly like them and need them.

My final stage of the first steps would be to look at what you have, can you improve it? Is it usable? Do you like it? Do you hate it? Could it be better off with someone else? Does it need to be thrown out? Can it be recycled through throwing out or through your own DIY efforts? Does it reflect who you are? Does it bring good, hopeful memories? Is it practical? Throw out what is useless and completely irreparable, donate what others can use, keep what you love, DIY what you can and fix what you can, always be practical, but don’t forget that ornamentation is (practical)ly beautiful too.

Coming in Part two: What I’ve found so far, pictures, and ideas.

Recommended Links

Goth it Yourself is a fantastic blog from a lady who is decorating her house with a gothic aesthetic, she has many projects and many great ideas. Check it out! 

365 Days of Halloween has given me so many ideas for my own home decoration.

Etsy has lovely things always. If you cannot buy them yourself, why not take inspiration from what others have created.

Look on any Tumblr blogs for pretty inspirations like wall decals, pillows, and never forget to Google Google Google 😀


All blog content is Copyright © 2012 of Nightshade unless otherwise stated


5 thoughts on “The Witch’s Cottage: Goth Home Decoration Part One-The First Steps

  1. Pingback: Day 23: Parliament | Haven't We Done This Before?

  2. Pingback: The Witch’s Cottage: Goth Home Decoration- Kitchen- Ideas and Pictures « thepurplebroom

  3. Pingback: The Witch’s Cottage: Goth Home Decoration Part 3- Red and Black Week: Bedroom « thepurplebroom

  4. You sound very young! I like your enthusiasm for everything, and, even though i just started reading your blogs, I cant wait to see more of the ideas you have! I have been out on my own for 30 years, and my own tastes have developed over time, into something much like yours. I have an unusual mix of Fairies and similar art, primitive crows, stars and witchy-stuff.

    I have huge containers of peacock feathers that I have gathered, with dried flowers, herbs, oranges and pumpkins that are very beautiful, and inexpensive. I try to not clutter my world with stuff that doesn’t mean anything, so all the decorations I have usually come from a cool place I’ve visited, or as a gift from someone special.

    If I were going to offer some advice, I’d tell you that too much of a dark color will make your living space seem very, very small! The walls will close in on you in a hurry, and what seemed cozy and cool will seem like cluttered and claustrophobic. I had to rethink my house a few times to lighten my tones and make everything a bit less closed in.

    One idea you might consider is to incorporate a groovy shade of deep purple with your black tones. Purple is a very elegant color and looks great with all kinds of decor. I use lots of deep orange to give my house a warm feeling.

    • Thank you for reading my blog! I definitely agree that too much of a dark colour will make a space seem very small. As I’m living in a garden cottage at the moment, all my walls are white which I hate, but I am not allowed to paint the walls anyway.

      If I were to paint the walls it would be more along the lines of earthy tones, or dusty purple as a focus wall. I think purple is really a lovely colour, and I have been attempting to put purple accents where possible.

      I tend to hang pictures and objects such as bats and broomsticks on the walls to break the monotony of the white.

      Since Halloween is coming along, I’m definitely incorporating some orange tones here and there which adds warmth, along with some more purple.

      Thank you for sharing your tips, they are very helpful!

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