If you’re looking to create a kitchen with a cozy, comfortable, welcoming feel and a rustic, old-world look, French country style is the perfect design. This style of décor fits well in both country homes and modern homes and can easily be created by incorporating a few key elements.
Key French Country Style Elements
Below are key elements for creating a French country kitchen that’s elegant and has distinctive character.
French country style is marked by soft, pale colors taken from a provincial landscape. Muted hues in earthy tones, such as mustard yellow, soft gold, warm reds, mossy green and pale ocean blues are common.
Dark accents like granite countertops, dark wooden floors with wide boards, colored appliances and wrought-iron detailing can provide the perfect contrast to your French country kitchen.
Natural materials are an important element in pieces used in French country decorating. Rough stained walls, hefty beamed ceilings and delicately carved wood details provide texture and offer a simple look.
Since cabinetry tends to take up the most visual space in a kitchen, using warm surfaces and subdued tones on the kitchen cabinets is a must for an authentic French country feel.
Materials used in French country décor often have stunning architectural features. For example, crown molding framing the top of kitchen cabinets is a common component of French country kitchens, as they add a beautiful traditional element.
Another common architectural feature is old, charming flooring. To create this look, old wooden boards are often used, as well as rustic flooring made of stone, clay or brick.
Tall, narrow windows with shutters are another distinguishing characteristic of this design style.
Country French kitchen cabinets feature furniture-type details to add to the warmth and comfort of the room. This décor style features kitchen cabinets that are somewhat ornate, with the doors typically featuring raised or inset panels that are arched or square.
Country French kitchen cabinets are similar to a Victorian style; however, they have brighter colors. Skirted cabinetry, particularly under the sink, is also a traditional country style detail that adds an instant rustic look to the kitchen.
A kitchen island is also an important component to a French country kitchen, as it serves to help with food preparation and provides space to bring people together. If you have the space for an island in your kitchen and want to add visual interest, choose an island in a different color than the rest of the kitchen but keep it within the same warm, muted color palette.
Stainless steel appliances fit beautifully in any kitchen, including French country style ones, and enable you to create a truly unique space. You don’t have to worry about creating contrast that doesn’t work when you go with stainless steel, as this material complements a wide spectrum of designs and matches well with a variety of cabinet colors.
If you’re not a fan of stainless steel, white appliances also pair well with this décor style. And, since having a few antique touches is essential for an authentic French country kitchen, retro-inspired appliances are another great choice.
Ready to start the exciting process of designing your French country kitchen and customizing your kitchen cabinetry to match this style? Get started with our free online kitchen design today!