The French farmhouse style is undeniably attractive for interior spaces, but you don't have to travel to France to experience it for yourself. With just a few simple steps, you can transform the interior of your apartment or house into a perfect replica of a traditional French farmhouse, and you'll then be free to bask in the relaxing charm of this rustic style. If you don't already know exactly how to replicate the appearance of a French farmhouse in your very own home, just make sure that you touch on all of the following elements and find the perfect balance between the old and the new.
Get the Colors Right
Before you select the exact features that you want to use to make your bedroom, bathroom, or living room into a French masterpiece, you'll need to make sure that you've brushed up on the color schemes that you should use to pull off the look that you desire. The French farmhouse style incorporates plenty of bright colors, and it also uses a lot of muted tones. In addition, you'll want to use plenty of back and white throughout your home to pull off this style, and keep in mind that rusted metal plays a big part in French farmhouse decor. Use bright yellow and soft gold in abundance, and don't shy away from red tones like fiery red and burnt rust. Green also plays a big role in the color scheme of a French farmhouse, and you can complement hunter green with cobalt blue for a subdued effect.
While you should generally save bright white for the walls of your new French countryside palace, you should use jet black and dull gray in abundance. It's important to remember that the French farmhouse style is all about contrasting colors and textures, so don't be afraid to experiment with lots of different colors as you reach that perfect balance.
Fill in All of the Features
If you've ever been in a real French farmhouse, you know that distressed raw wood beams on the ceiling are a big part of this decor style's appeal. If you want, you can skip the real wood and use faux wood beams that will stand the test of time better than their tree-based counterparts. These architectural features are then contrasted with white plaster walls, but you should go for an irregular finish on your plaster if you truly want to mimic the semi-rough work that you find in a farmhouse.
When it comes to the floors in your new French abode, make sure to use real stone. While you're at it, build a stone fireplace with a big, thick beam on top of it to serve as a mantle. Border your fireplace with tiles, and you'll be one step closer to achieving the appearance of a true French cottage. As you select furniture for your newly decorated home, make sure that you don't skimp on the traditional French armoires; whether you use these dressers to store clothes in your bedroom or place them next to your kitchen sink to serve as ideal places to store dishes, pots, and pans, no room is complete without one of these handy any authentic pieces of furniture.
Pick Your Prints
After you have the furniture in place, it will be time to pick the types of prints that you want to have on your tablecloths, curtains, and blankets. If you want to go for the Provencal style, you should use plenty of primary color shades mixes with lavender, green, and orange. In terms of decorative images, traditional French farmhouse prints often incorporate images of roosters, sunflowers, olives, grapes, and even beetles. Alternatively, you can go for the Toile style by including prints with monkeys, farm animals, or courting scenes.
Be a Basket Case
French countryside houses always incorporate lots of baskets. Whether you include traditional wicker baskets or go for an updated metal wire style, you'll want to deploy these item carriers throughout your home's entryway, kitchen, living room, dining room, and bedrooms. You should mix and match the sizes of baskets that you use, but make sure that they are big enough to be useful; in traditional French homes, these baskets weren't for just for decoration, and the more uses you can find for these delightfully bucolic features the better.
Chinoiserie is a style that became all the rage in France in the 18th century. Due to burgeoning trade relations between China and the West, Chinese goods and cultural artifacts were becoming more and more popular all throughout Europe during this period. Chinoiserie items include vases designed to mimic the incredible vases of different Chinese dynasties and prints that look like traditional Chinese floral prints. One way to achieve this style in your new French-style home is to deploy a bunch of chinoiserie pots and bases throughout your kitchen, and you can even use some of these pots to store items like sugar and flour.
Add a Window Box or Two
Nothing's more evocative of the French countryside than a window box full of bright flowers. While window boxes look most at home outside of your kitchen windows, you can also place them under your bedroom window to ensure that you'll be greeted by something bright and beautiful right after you wake up. Examples of flowers that work great in window boxes include geraniums and lavender.
Don't Skimp on the Table Settings
Try adding iron candle holders and wire baskets to your table setting to evoke a truly French look. You can also include pottery water jars to complete the look.