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Cottage Farm: Seasonal Living in New England

How to Embody Creativity, Calm and Comfort in Your Home

Krissy O’Shea

Photographer. Stylist. Chef.



Q: Can you tell us about what you do?

A: I have lived many creative lives and each of them has taught me to see the world in a very specific way. I use this way of seeing now in my work as a freelance photographer and stylist, recipe developer and writer. I also design events, host workshops and create evanescent spaces with the intention of bringing people together, fostering creativity and inspiration.

Q: Something you wish you would’ve known at 20?

A: The art of failure.

Q: What does living a conscious life mean to you?

A: It means thinking about the choices I make each day, practicing gratitude and making time to notice the moments in between.

Staying Centered in Chaos:

My time living and working in London taught me that while I may not always have the power to affect the situation or those around me, there is always the power of personal choice. Remembering that this possibility of personal choice exists in every moment helps me to stay centered.

A Truth I Know for Sure:

Every morning the sun rises and with it comes the promise of possibility.

Best Advice I’ve Received:

Two pieces of advice I come back to time and again: break the lines of the container and take more risks.

The Ultimate Home Rule:

Surround yourself with only the rudimentary but that which brings beauty, calm and comfort into the space. Creating a personal sanctuary is about discovering and celebrating the rhythm of everyday practices and routines, and finding the delight in these everyday practices.

Creativity Essentials

The space for play. As adults we unlearn this skill, and it feels indulgent to just do, to spend time doing something where the end goal is uncertain. But play is a generative practice and some of my most inspiring images, bodies of work or ideas have come from it. Never stop learning.

Ways to Make Your Space Come More Alive

Light. Noticing the shape of the light and accentuating it—while I love bright clean light, there is beauty in the shadows too. Also I always have something organic in my most lived-in spaces. It is something of a luxury, but I always have fresh cut flowers in a vase in the kitchen. Texture is another element I use to create depth. My color palettes are always very simple, so I use texture and layers to create interest and flow in my home space and those I create for work.

The 411

Krissy O’Shea is a freelance photographer and stylist. After receiving her MFA from San Francisco Art Institute, she moved to London and worked in editorial and events. She now resides in New England. She is passionate about food, design and fashion and writes about it all on her popular lifestyle blog,

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