16 Ways To Bring The English Countryside Home
A drive through the English countryside reveals quaint cottages and charming farmhouses tucked into rolling hills and green valleys. Inside, these historic spaces master the mix of rustic and refined with a dash of flair (think: a 200-year-old antique against an aged brick wall, or a polished pair of candlesticks on a weathered wood table). But you don’t have to hop on a plane to bring the British take on country style home. We’ve rounded up 18 spaces with inspired decorating ideas to help you incorporate the English countryside into your own home, no matter your location.
Every British country house needs a bit of plaid. In designer Colette van den Thillart’s garden room, the style is “preppy with a twist,” which perfectly describes the plaid rug underfoot.
As a sea-faring nation, nothing feels more British than the classic naval pairing of blue and white. Here, pretty fabric-panelled doors add a dash of pedigree to an all-white space.
No country house is complete without wellington boots and a boot scrape, seen lower right — just what’s needed after an afternoon walk in the fields.
London-based designer Colette van den Thillart dressed up her simple country bathroom with a Tudor Rose fabric skirt. Not only does patterned fabric look great, it also hides plumbing and toiletries.
Unite new and old with a cohesive color palette or motifs. A pretty striped rug echoes the cornflower blue sofa, while natural accents tie in the pine panelling and rough-hewn stone wall.
In mudrooms, a half-swing or Dutch door is perfect for wrangling dogs. As an exterior door, it would let a lovely breeze blow in from the garden.
Today’s period country properties need to have a balance between modern-day style and historical integrity. Iscoyd Park, a Georgian red brick house in north-west England, was transformed thanks to a delicate balance between the bold botanical wallpaper and mid-century furnishings.
At the famed Soho Farmhouse in the Cotswolds, the living room in the main farmhouse is modern British eccentricity at its finest; quirky pendant lights, a bold wallpaper and plenty of botanical motifs combine with antique pieces for a wonderfully quirky look.
A combination of beaded boarding and romantic floral wallpaper adds rustic charm to this bedroom. Incorporate a variety of lighting — like the table lamps, sconces, articulating lights and overhead pendants seen here — to give your space a snug ambience.
The Brits are known for their love of homey comforts, and what better place for afternoon tea and biscuits than a pillowy daybed? This antique one finished in a smattering of patterns is the perfect spot.
Dental molding and crystal pulls combine with a stylish mix of drawers and shelves in this kitchen, making the room look like it’s been gathered and collected over the years, rather than freshly built.
After centuries of renovations and additions, British homes are notorious for their higgledy-piggledy nature. Make the most of nooks and crannies and turn them into a window seat, for instance.
A high-low mix is key in English country cottages. Pairing a crystal chandelier with exposed ceiling beams, crisp cabinetry and rough-hewn brick-and-stone walls dresses up an otherwise simple kitchen but saves it from being too precious.
For this refined dining room, designer James Davie chose wide-plank flooring, a hunter green hutch and subtle millwork detailing.
In the study, James continued his use of millwork, a hallmark of British country homes, both on the ceiling and the walls. The textured walls provide the perfect backdrop to a Wedgwood blue sofa, bold red pillows and a dark wood octagonal side table.
Outside the home, rambling flowerbeds paired with sculptural hedges are quintessential British country garden. Softly weathered patio furniture finishes the look.