Pairing antique and vintage furnishings, fixtures and elements with modern pieces has evolved the shabby chic style into a much more eclectic design palette referred to as country chic. Using an assortment of materials, shapes, colors and textures can completely change the look of any space and incorporate country chic design. The style can be fun and quirky with plenty of variety to show off your personality, or if you prefer less color, you can also pull off this look using a neutral palette of whites, tans and browns. This combination will create an inviting and comfortable atmosphere – the perfect retreat to return home to after a stressful day.
Creating country chic style is all about fun, blending vintage and modern pieces, and mixing wood, metal, ceramic, porcelain, glass, along with a variety of shapes, sizes and colors. While painted furnishings and colors are important to pull off the country chic look, natural and stained distressed wood furniture should be the base material that is accented by other colors and objects.
The non-consistent grain of oak, hickory and walnut also beautifully lend to the design by adding variation and movement within the wood. Adding a few pieces of furniture that are painted white, a pale pastel or a bright color will add interest to the neutral palette.
If you need more storage in your home, consider furniture with space to hide things away, open shelves, or mix it up with a cabinet that provides both. Antique stores and flea markets can be perfect for finding vintage pieces, however, if you are not finding the perfect piece, try looking online at Etsy or a local boutique like Studio J in Dublin. “With the popularity of Country Chic comes a level of elegance and charm for a refined yet understated look that will last I lifetime.
It provides a calming and easy living environment with the use of a comforting blend of metals, vintage paints, and textured fabrics.” – June Sedlak Mooney Upholstered furniture is ideal for creating a comfy space and while antique chairs have amazing charm to add to your country chic home, it can be challenging to find fabrics that haven’t deteriorated over time.
However, if the frame is what you have been looking for then the fabric can be reupholstered with a similar look, or you can get creative with a floral or organic pattern to update the feel of the classic piece. Floral prints lend to the country vibe while organic patterns add a contemporary flair. Using a combination of materials like weathered leather or woven fabrics also provides more texture in a space. For window coverings, I like using lightweight, flowing fabrics for a softer feel, though if you prefer heavier, structured fabric that can work also.
Another great touch is adding cozy throw blankets to your family room and bedrooms, and updating your pillows with a knit cover in a neutral or bright color, I love the different textures this adds to a space. Old metal baskets with wood handles make an excellent accent piece for storage on an open shelf bookcase and are great for storing fruits and vegetables on the kitchen counter, or keeping nonperishable food organized in your pantry.
Baskets can also be hung on a wall as a decorative shelf with the feel of a shadow box. In your kitchen, consider using a piece of repurposed furniture with a new granite countertop as your island. You can find an inexpensive piece at almost any granite shop in their boneyard and it doesn’t need to 24 BUCKEYE LIFESTYLE SPRING/SUMMER 2021 match your existing kitchen. This concept resembles the kitchen trend to have the island cabinets and countertops differ in color from the perimeter cabinets.
Taking this one step further, it has also become popular to have different colors for the upper and lower cabinets. Mismatched stools at the island also adds to the style. Another eclectic design element in your country chic kitchen is incorporating a rooster, which is also a symbol of good luck in many cultures. A quick online search can provide many fun and creative examples. Also consider mismatched plates, bowls, silverware, glasses, teacups, a fun colander or cake dome, old cookbooks, and copper or metal cookware.
A vintage iron baker’s rack can add storage space in your kitchen and provides an interesting design element. Continuing the country chic style into your dining room, add an old table with mismatched chairs or a reclaimed church pew. While the goal is always to be as mismatched as possible, you can also find many new dining sets that have options for the seating like fabric chairs for the ends of the table, then chairs without fabric and a bench for the remainder of the seating.
You can also update your dining room buffet by replacing the wood panel or glass panes in the doors with chicken wire or wire mesh. Adding an iron tea cart for a small bar area is also a perfect addition to the space. Bedrooms are the perfect cozy space to add a vintage quilt, and some mismatched nightstands and a dresser. A metal bedframe can also add interest to the space. Don’t forget to look at the bedroom sets you already have and consider the possibilities of mixing up your existing pieces.
To accessorize your spaces, look for old barrels, wood milk crates, vintage lamps, trays, ceramics and old clocks. Natural elements like driftwood and stone also add interest to any space. For wall hangings, consider a reclaimed windowpane with old barn glass, a salvaged piece of a stained-glass window to add some color to the space or a set of distressed shutters. Using old picture frames with sepia prints also adds to the warm vintage feel. Finally, don’t forget to soften the look of a space with some greenery in colorful or neutral tone planters, or use succulents in glass containers that hang from a rope to add to the country chic feel.
A terrarium with the combination of metal, glass and greenery is also a great accent piece for any space. The eclectic and cozy country chic style is so much fun to create, and regardless of the pieces you are putting together, remember to make it your own with design elements you enjoy. This will give the space that lived-in feel that makes your home a comforting retreat from the outside world.