French Provincial home décor is incredibly elegant and polished, but still very warm and welcoming. The aesthetic was born out of sophisticates moving outside of Paris to the Provinces of France in the 17th and 18th Century, this created a gorgeous mix of tasteful urban style and rustic country warmth. With all that history comes an awful lot of refinement and style, plus, it’s not too difficult to capture! Here are a few tips for decorating your home with French Provincial furniture…
Let the furniture be the star
By nature, French Provincial furniture is quite decorative, using splendid, curved lines and embellishments. In order to keep your home looking tasteful and ever so French, you’re going to have to let your curated pieces be the star of the show. This means refraining from splashing the walls with bold paint or decorative wallpaper, leaving patterns to a minimum and being mindful about every accessory that you place – even the small ones!
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Stick to a colour palette
A pared-back colour palette is essential in French Provincial furniture design. The look favours muted neutrals with warm undertones. Think creams, pinks, very pale yellows and mint tinged greens. All of your tones need to be soft and delicate, there’s no room for bright, rich or bold colours here.
Be selective when it comes to materials
You’ll also need to be mindful when you’re exploring materials to integrate into your interior design. French Provincial furniture should use washed timbers, wrought irons and wicker elements. For textiles, you’ll want to stick to natural fibres like wool, linen and cotton. Linen is a cornerstone of the aesthetic so make sure you have it in there somewhere, even if you opt for the manmade kind.
Use cohesive patterns
You can definitely use a few subtle patterns in your upholstery and soft furnishings, just as long as they are slight and cohesive throughout your home. Look for vintage-looking faded florals, pale paisley and stripes to channel the French Provinces flawlessly. A light-handed approach really can’t be emphasised enough here, less is more.
Add gilded gold
A few sparingly placed pops of antique gold will bring that relaxed opulent tone to your French Provincial home. Choose gold trimmings for picture frames, vases and small decorative pieces to bring it into your palette, without overpowering the look and feel of your rooms. Steer away from modern yellow or rose gold, it will throw off the classic vibe that you’re going for.
French Provincial design loves accessories
Now, even though you have to practice restraint in your use of colour, patterns and accents, you can be pretty maximalist with your accessory placement! Anything that’s decorative will score you big design points! Bring character to your space by placing ornate porcelain pieces (specifically door handles), decorative lampshades, carved wax candles, birdcages, vintage clocks and wicker baskets. As long as your accessories are following the terms of your colour scheme, they’re going to work perfectly.
Add a statement mirror
Statement mirrors are perfect for so many different homes – no matter how big the room might be, reflecting it is going to make the whole space feel more open. Choose a large, decorative mirror with a worn gold frame to tie your French Provincial lounge, bedrooms and dining room together. A few mirrored surfaces here and there will also help to bring some life and freshness to your décor.
Follow these tips and you’ll find yourself with an expertly put together home that looks like it’s straight out of the French Provinces!