Whether you live in the middle of a city, in middle class suburbia or you’re lucky enough to enjoy a rural aspect, country interior design is as popular as ever. Creating a home that feels like a countryside retreat is actually easier than you might think and can be achieved in a city flat as easily as in a rural cottage. All you need is the right choice of home furnishings and accessories and the look is yours. Plus, it doesn’t have to cost a fortune either.
If you are planning on redesigning your kitchen space you might want to consider the country style kitchen. The kitchen is already the heart of the home, but it can be surprisingly easy to create an even more welcoming and cosy space that you and your family will love.
A country kitchen will almost always incorporate an eating area. Often this is a central rustic looking wooden table that really is the heart of the home. This is used as a food preparation area, a place for homework and a place for eating. This wooden table can be complemented by wooden worktops and either painted wooden doors or country style units.
Country kitchens are often characterised by the range cooker or Aga. This can heat the entire home and provides a cosiness to a kitchen that standard cookers just don’t achieve. The Aga is a great addition to any home, but will instantly give your kitchen a country feel, no matter where it is.
Open fires and log burners
In the same way that an Aga can give a country feel in the kitchen, your living space will also benefit from an open fire or log burner. These have had a huge surge in popularity over the last few years, possibly as people want to create a cosy home with a focal point. Plus, running a log burner or open fre can be great way to reduce energy bills.
Even if your home doesn’t have a chimney, you can fit a log burner with a flue to the outside, or you can buy an electric or gas version that looks almost real. The moment you install a log fire, your home will have that rural feel you want.
Lots of wood
Country style homes are known for their use of wood and other natural materials. Exposed beams, timber floors and timber window casings are all popular. But even in a home that is modern, you can bring in wood that will soften the look and give it a rural feel. Wooden tables, units, bookshelves and more can allow you to get that soft and cosy feel that only solid wood can give.
Wood can be expensive to buy, but veneer can often work well. If you choose carefully and stick to one type of veneer throughout your home, you can still get the warmth from the colour without breaking the bank. Of course, solid wood items are available second hand and with a sand down and a coat of varnish they can look like new.
When it comes to achieving country colours in your home, it is muted tones all the way. Natural shades are the best way to get the country feel, but with splashes of colour to give it a rustic feel. This means choosing cream over white, pastel shades of blues, greens and yellows, while updating the look with browns and olives.
The materials you use in your home will also work with the colours to achieve the desired look. This might include sisal matting, cotton bedding, wicker furniture and baskets and light colored carpeting and curtains.
Indoor and outdoor gardens
One of the best things about country living is the fact that the garden becomes as much a part of the home as the inside. Even a small garden can have that country look with the choice of the right plants. In particular flowers should be wild and less formal with lawns achieving that meadow feel. The key is to let your garden become a little overgrown with a simple and unfussy look.
You can also bring the garden inside if you are living in a flat or apartment. Lots of fresh flowers can add bursts of colour, while indoor plants will help to create an outdoor feel. This is especially this case if they are flowering plants.
There’s nothing quite like homemade items to bring in a country feel to your home – after all, rural people have always had to be more resourceful with their hands. This might include handmade furniture – but for most of us it extends to handcrafted items such as knitted or crocheted blankets, hand tufted rugs, hand sewn cushions and handmade and designed quilts.
These crafts have seen a resurgence in recent years and people have embraced the relaxation that can come from carrying out a craft. It is also a great way to make your home unique as something handmade will always be different to items bought from homeware stores.
Embrace the boho look
Whether you want to call it boho or not, the slightly eccentric and thrown together feel of this country style is easy to achieve, especially on a budget. By scouring online bidding sites and second hand shops, you can find all kinds of items that will fit in with this scheme. These may include items of wooden furniture that can be sanded and painted, old lengths of material that can be fashioned into curtains or tablecloths, mismatched crockery from various eras that create a feminine and colourful look and of course knicknacks and accessories that tell the stories of rural country life. These might include riding gear, agricultural equipment, scuttles, metal washing up bowls or tin baths. Anything that can help to create an atmosphere in your home that harks back to a different time – yet with a modern edge.
Country can be modern too
One of the best ways to get a modern country look is to try the Scandi interior design trend. Ikea pull off this look to perfection with an uncluttered modern look that is all about textures and muted tones. Creams, blues and whites mix together to achieve a calm and ordered look. But bring in heavy rugs, bulky hand knitted blankets and plenty of cushions and it feels like a rural winter retreat. Best of all, this Scandi look is so popular that all of the High street is offering the perfect accessories and furniture to buy at very reasonable prices.
Country living can be achieved in any part of the country and in any home, it is just a matter of having the conviction to get the look you want. Be brave or be traditional. The best thing about country interior design is that it allows for creativity or it can be paired back and relaxed. The choice really is yours.