How To Create a Rustic French Countryside Kitchen and Dining Room

How relaxing would it be to sit down to dinner with the ambiance of the romantic French countryside all around you? Luckily, you don’t have to travel to France to capture its aesthetic in your home. By using the right colors and fabrics, trimming the room with authentic details, and choosing the right dining room furniture, you can enjoy all the feelings of France right in your own home.

Choose Airy, Welcoming Colors

French country homes often use light, warm colors. The walls are often off-white, soft blue, or blue-gray. Accent colors usually incorporate beiges, browns, delicate pinks, and gentle yellows to create a soothing, inviting feel.

Use Natural Materials

In the French countryside, traditional homemakers relied on natural materials. Wood furniture and cabinets accented with stone, brick, and iron will make your dining room and kitchen seem authentic. Kitchen appliances in dark colors can give the impression of iron, adding a welcome modern touch.

Select Cabinets With Detailing

Crown molding is a hallmark of French kitchens. This can be added around the ceiling but is more often incorporated into the design of the cabinets themselves. More often than not, French cabinets will include furniture-like details, including gentle arches, burnishing, or distressing. Skirted cabinetry is also popular.

An Island Invites Company

Large families in the countryside required more workspace for cooking and more seating for enjoying meals. To solve this problem, they incorporated grand kitchen islands. Islands painted in an accent color, or decorated with crown molding or carved details, work as a functional anchor piece for the room.

Delight In the Details

The real trick to pulling off a rustic French feel is incorporating authentic details. In a real country kitchen, glass jars would be used to store preserves or protect ingredients like sugar or flour. Detailing these jars with burlap or ribbon and grouping them on countertops gives your space a more authentic feeling than if you relied on modern Tupperware. Use toile fabrics for curtains or soft coverings on chairs to keep that light, airy feeling going throughout your entire home. Luckily, decor like this can commonly be found in your local furniture store.

Of course, the hallmark of a French kitchen is hanging cookware overhead, usually above the stove or the center island. Originally a functional decision, this has become a delightful design element in many kitchens. Top this off with brass or cast iron cookware to create a greater sense of authenticity.

Select Rustic but Elegant Dining Room Furniture

In many country homes, kitchens and dining rooms seamlessly blend into each other. For this reason, carrying your French theme into the dining room is one way to make this illusion feel complete.

You have a lot of flexibility in dining room furniture sets for this theme, however, certain elements are common. Typically, decorators choose wooden tables and chairs, although a mix of wood and iron is sometimes used. Wood is left its natural color or lightly white-washed and distressed. Dining room furniture has soft curves and rounded edges to give it a hand-made, elegant feel. On the other hand, highly-polished furniture sets with more elaborate details can lend a more upscale atmosphere to larger spaces. One advantage to a French country theme is its popularity and versatility; this guarantees that you can find appropriate pieces in any furniture store you visit.

Bring The Elegance of France to Your Home

Designing a rustic French countryside kitchen and dining room isn’t as hard as you think. Furniture stores in Indiana carry a range of home furniture that will bring your dream rooms to life. Discount furniture stores in Indianapolis are great places to snap up unique pieces that make your rooms stand out even if you choose a popular decorating theme like the French countryside.

Increasingly, homeowners recognize the impact interior design has on their homes. A gorgeous house with a bland or forgettable interior is no good. Interior design has become so important to homeowners that by 2021, furniture and home furnishing sales are expected to account for 13.6% of all e-commerce sales in the United States. Don’t get left behind: start redecorating today!

4 Retro Styles for Decorating and Furnishing

Suppose you want to create a room, or even an entire house, around a particular period of time. Maybe it is inspired by nostalgia for a special time in your life. Maybe it fits a collection or hobby that you have. Or maybe you just like the design aesthetic of the time.

The first step is knowing the difference between vintage and retro. Vintage uses actual pieces from the time period. For example, a vintage 60s theme would require you to search antique stores and second-hand stores for furniture and decor actually made in the 60s. Since this is neither practical nor time and cost-efficient for many people, a retro theme may be more appropriate. Retro themes use new home furniture that evokes a particular era through its shape, style, patterns, and colors. Thus, rather than using antique furniture and second-hand furniture, you would decorate and furnish your retro bedroom with new dressers, nightstands, and a bed from retail bedroom furniture stores. Here are examples of four retro styles for decorating and furnishing:

The 1960s

In the 1960s, there were a few cultural influences that created different aesthetic styles. One was the space age. For examples of this style, think of a classic cartoon: The Jetsons. Home office furniture and dining room furniture in that time used chrome and molded plastic with rounded modernist shapes. To create a retro space-age theme, search bedroom furniture stores for beds, nightstands, chairs, and dressers with rounded edges and chrome finishes.

Another influence in the 1960s was the counterculture created by hippies and protest movements. For examples of this style, think pop art. This art form often incorporated highly contrasting colors, such as white backgrounds with vibrant, psychedelic greens, pinks, purples, and yellows.

The 1970s

Although most people associate the 1970s with disco, many homes and home furniture reflected a more sedate, homey aesthetic. This was likely a reaction to the counterculture of the 1960s and nostalgia for earlier, more stable times. Homes in the 1970s used an earthier color palette, with colors like avocado green, burnt orange, goldenrod, and harvest gold. Following the earthier color palette, floral patterns were popular in the 1970s.

Home decor typically included macrame, terra cotta tile, wood paneling, and matching furniture sets. To create a retro 70s bedroom, search bedroom furniture stores for bedroom sets with simple square or rectangular wood furniture without embossing and simple wood pulls and handles. For examples of 70s retro, look to the styling of That 70’s Show.

The 1980s

The 1980s saw two design styles. On the one hand, Memphis design used geometric patterns, terrazzo patterns, and bright primary colors. Home furniture from this design style was geometric as well, with rectangular couches and chairs. This style was exemplified by Saved By the Bell and Pee Wee’s Playhouse. To furnish a Memphis design bedroom, look for chairs, dressers, and tables of unconventional, geometric shapes from bedroom furniture stores. Keep in mind that one characteristic of Memphis design is mismatched shapes.

Shabby chic became the other major style of the era. Perhaps in response to rampant commercialism and consumerism, shabby chic used country and Victorian style furniture, lace, and chintz to create a second-hand (or “shabby”) style. This was a forerunner of the modern-day “make do” style favored by Millennials that emphasizes re-use and re-purposing.

The 1990s

While the 1990s do not seem far enough away to deserve “retro” treatment, children of the 1990s are approaching their thirties and are nostalgic for their childhood style. Perhaps as a reaction to the perceived artificiality of Memphis design, the 1990s design aesthetic incorporated earthy colors like hunter green, beige, and burgundy. For the same reason, natural materials, like pine and wicker, became very popular for furniture. Similarly, although leather has been used since 2200 BC, it made a big comeback in the 1990s. Technology also began to dictate the types of furniture we used, with an entertainment center capable of holding a large screen TV becoming a common fixture in homes. For examples of 90s decorating, think about the apartments in Friends, Seinfeld, and Frasier.

As contradictory as it may seem, retro style is in style. By choosing a color palette, materials, and furniture style that is reminiscent of a particular time period, you can evoke the aesthetic of an entire era.