6 Secrets To Mastering French Country Style
French Country style is all about finding the right mix of rustic and chic. Noëlle Duck expertly captures French Country style in her book A Home in Provence, which features the inspiring interiors, gardens and decorative art traditions of rural France. If you’d like to decorate with a taste of Provence, click through to learn how you can create the look in your own home and garden.
Historically, interior walls in the south of France were often painted with distemper, an early form of whitewash, which could be tinted in many colors. Though distemper has fallen out of style, consider painting a room in azure, a sky blue Provençal hue.
You can’t get more French Country than terra cotta tiles. Available in many shapes and patinas including classic hexagonal or glazed squares, earthenware tiles can be used in both wall and floor applications. For classic Provençal style, try an elegant checkerboard floor of matte-glazed black-and-white tiles, like this one, in a kitchen or breakfast nook.
Learn how to DIY checkerboard floors with paint.
These textiles often have patterns of stylized flowers, herbs, olive branches, small fruits and bees. In vibrant iterations, a printed fabric usually appears on the top surface with a plain fabric on the underside. But if color and pattern isn’t your thing, go with simple and stunning. White percale quilts like this boutis are painstakingly handcrafted using the French technique of “stuffing” in combination with quilting.
Centuries ago in Provence, primitive earthenware vessels were made for practical reasons: to store, cook and serve food. Today, colorful ceramics are synonymous with southern French style. Casual yet elegant, glazed terra cotta bowls, jars, plates, jugs, terrines and pitchers are great options.
Outdoor living is essential in Provence. Homes usually have a transitional space between the more private interior and the garden. Enter the terrace, an outdoor summer living room often paved with terra cotta or stone tiles, or cobblestones. Furnish yours with a simple bistro table and chairs, a hammock, a bench or lounge chairs.
For beautiful French Country style in the garden, grow Wisteria over a pergola to provide shade from the summer sun. Pergolas can also be roofed with cane screening to filter light, but are even more beautiful (and romantic) when covered with the fragrant climbing flower.