Country French bedrooms reflect centuries' worth of history, personal tastes, and assembled-through-time appeal. Spaces decorated in this style happily mix rusty and polished patinas, old- and new-world nuances, and fine and rough textiles. The results are distinctive country French bedrooms that are elegantly understated, harmoniously hued, and comfortably feminine. Though each space makes an individual statement, similar elements pop up again and again in country French bedrooms. Here's a look at how you can translate those characteristic elements into your own interpretation of country French style.
Country French palettes range from cheerful Provencal schemes and bright yellow-and-blue combos to dramatic black-and-white pairings and peaceably pale neutrals. As with other styles of bedrooms, today's country French bedrooms are taking a tranquil turn: Low-key color schemes quietly come into play to highlight furnishings and promote relaxation. Start with the perimeters when building a country French bedroom. Incorporate colorwashed plaster walls, or cover walls in toile- or damask-pattern papers. Whenever possible, add hand-hewn beams, lay reclaimed-wood or natural-stone floors, and install substantial moldings with simple profiles to give new spaces a sense of age. Limit the number of architectural embellishments and colors on walls, floors, and ceilings to create a sense of calm. Above all else, country French is never overly fussy.
Whether provincially rustic, colorfully painted, or ornately carved, bedsteads take a starring role in country French bedrooms. Look for antique and reproduction wood or iron beds that feature curvaceous headboards and footboards done up in fetching finishes or posh upholstery fabrics. Four-posters and canopy beds are also fine options for country French bedrooms. Remember to bring in period storage pieces, such as armoires, blanket chests, wicker trunks, etageres, and commodes, to further a bedroom's country French leanings. Provide comfortable seating via velvet-clad bergere chairs, chenille-covered chaises, and silk-upholstered divans. Blend furniture with painted, gilded, glazed, stenciled, weathered, and glossy finishes to create collected charm.
Create a grand finale by layering flourishes and fabrics that are inherently French in feel. Though nothing says "French" better than toile, it's the blend of different motifs and fabric types that distinguishes country French style. Use varying-scale checked, striped, and floral pillows to energize beds dressed in monogrammed linens and natural-hue matelasse or linen coverlets. Display coordinating fabric patterns as dust ruffles, slipcovers, and pillow shams. Outfit windows in full-length silk taffeta or damask draperies, either unembellished or trimmed with flirty fringe and tassels. Lay down faded antique area rugs featuring the colors in your decorating palette. Hang ornate mirrors with scintillating shapes and crystal-draped chandeliers sporting arresting patinas. Display Limoges plates and faience pottery, showcase small impressionist paintings in gilded or silver frames, and set vintage needlepoint pillows alongside woven baskets, verdigris lamps, and tarnished planters to fashion a memorable mix.