French country cottage decorating is a fun style of decorating that embraces the concept of eclecticism. Because the style mixes easily with a wide variety of collected and assembled pieces, it has become a very popular method of decorating. It can be achieved very inexpensively, through the use of vintage pieces that may have been handed down through your own family, or by using garage sale and thrift store finds and bargains.
French country cottage furniture covers a wide gamut of styles and piece, including four poster beds covered with a beautiful quilt or comforter, or your grandmother's old rocking chair. Pieces that have hidden storage such as an ottoman with a removable lid, or desks with built-in shelves or bookcases are also popular items that conform to the traditional cottage furniture concept of efficient use of space. Antique ladder back chairs are also a popular choice for adding that country cottage look to your home.
Fabric and Finishes for French Country Cottage Furniture
Painted furniture pieces are very popular choices, which means you can recycle older pieces of furniture that you might already have. When given a fresh coat of paint, even older pieces of furniture take on a new life. In fact, a little wear and tear adds a bit of "shabby chic" to the furniture pieces, so even a few dents and scratches won't detract from the overall appearance. Fabrics that are popular choices include checks and plaids, as well as floral prints. You can add new cushions to existing furniture items or create slipcovers for your sofa and chairs to add some French country cottage charm for very little money. Don't be afraid to mix and match fabric patterns, as this just adds to the design charm. Quilts, pillows and lap blankets are also cozy touches when draped over your furniture, which add not only color and style, but also comfort and practicality. White painted furniture is a popular choice, but other light shades are also effective. Splashes of brighter colors such as blue and red can also add a lot of visual interest, and blend in well with the overall style.
Great French Country Cottage Furniture to Look For
While the overall style is eclectic, there are some great pieces you can look for that will add a lot of charm to a room decorated in the French country cottage style. Old storage trunks make a great coffee table, with the advantage of providing convenient storage space inside. Ladder back chairs are always a great choice, and it can be a lot of fun to include a mismatched set around the dining room table. These can be visually brought together by painting them the same color, but the collection of different chair styles will add an interesting design touch to the room. Milk stools are also a great find, and can be used in many different ways, such as a stand for plants, or even as a small footstool, especially if you add a padded top. Wicker chairs are also a great touch, freshened up with a coat of paint if necessary.
Design consultant Jessica Ackerman of WallDecorandHomeAccents.com has more than twenty-five years experience with wood carving wall art and unique wall candle sconces.