the cottage dress
My husband and I were recently watching the old Emma Thompson version of Sense and Sensibility. Remember how distraught the family felt, being forced to move to a simple cottage in the country after the death of their father? After seeing the amazing estate they left behind, their disappointment was understandable. Though my husband and I laughed and both agreed that their "cottage" was a mansion compared to our simple house. If the size and shape of a house is a determinate for the term "cottage," then I think my house would fit the definition better than theirs.
Yes, sometimes I dream of having a mansion (like their "cottage,") or even just an extra room attached to the back of the house. A spot where I can hide my oversize canvases, stacks of fabric and estate sale sewing machine. But in reality, I'm secretly kind of content with my little house. I can clean the whole thing, top to bottom in three hours. I can usually find things because there aren't a lot of secret caches.
Though living in a small house does present its challenges--e.g. place a stack of books and a few dishes on the kitchen table and the whole house seems cluttery. Or open a closet and a package of bandaids, a bottle of hydrogen peroxide and a stack of wash cloths fall out on your head. There never seem to be enough spots to hide all the stuff. But maybe that's the point, less stuff means less clutter and less clutter, less to pick up and less to pick up, more time to sew and make things, and enjoy the simple pleasures of cottage living.