Home decorating and ‘feathering the nest’ will always be a very personal thing. People still want to decorate or change their homes regularly, whatever their age, life-stage or disposable income. This article aims to talk about some of the current styles that never go out of fashion.
Consider Your Colour Scheme
Pastels are big at the moment, in clothing and interior design. They are easier to live with and will not ‘date’ as quickly as some brighter schemes. Some fail safe palettes from which to work:
Make The Style Your Own
The term “shabby chic furniture” is now so widely used a term that many people have an element of this decoration in their homes. Broadly speaking, it derives from a style found in large British country piles where although the chintz sofa might be faded, elegance was still assumed. Today, you can:
Buy period features from specialist dealers/auctions
Shop with companies making reproduction pieces
Customise your own furniture
Look Beyond The Obvious
If you have some imagination and are willing to put some effort into your furniture, car boot sales and flea markets are a great place to start on your quest for shabby chic furniture. Floral fabrics are a great place to start think about making cushions or reupholstering an old chair. Look out for old furniture that could be painted. The more layers of paint or distressed-looking your furniture, the more loyal to the look you are!
There Are Big Houses In France Too
Although it was British houses where this trend originated, French Chateau style is now so popular that it is a defined decor in its own right. Often plain colours rather than patterns, the furniture is often grander and more ornate than the English Country version.
Look To Scandinavia For Inspiration
Similar to French Chateau, Gustavian (after King Gustav III of Sweden) style is less ornate and ‘showy.’ Lines are cleaner, colours plain and there is a big place for mirrors and reflective surfaces. Dramatic lighting is also key to this style; the bigger the chandelier, the better! Materials are luxurious raw silks and linens and patterns are few, or very basic. Swedish Country is slightly different again; more informal and rustic.
Whichever country style you opt for, the overall objective must be elegance. It is an easy style to add to or update as time goes by. Start with one or two key pieces and build from there. If you find your ‘statements’ in unique places, you can be sure that your home will never look the same as anyone else’s. You can make it reflect your personality by adding carefully chosen accessories and that is the easy and cheap, way to change your look. If, for example, you have a Swedish-style base, add some red accessories at Christmas to keep your look authentic, but festive and different enough from the rest of the year.
Tom Campbell writes regularly on interior design topics for various websites and blogs. Having originally dismissed his wife’s taste as “too girly,” he now fully embraces the country cottage style and has even incorporated an apple blossom design into his home office.