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Dream in French


What is it about summertime that can make us all feel just a little bit French? It seems as the weather warms and nature sprouts, thoughts effortlessly drift toward daydreams of the joie de vivre. All it takes is driving past fields of gold, noticing an old bike resting after a market visit, or catching a waft of baking baguettes and our minds are transported away to French landscapes and lifestyles.

It certainly makes sense given that tantalizing sensory appeals are the very hallmarks of French design – whether you’re drawn to sun-washed provincial stylings of the Old World or quirky color-bursts of modern meets vintage. No matter your persuasion, we’ve got the ticket to styling that can help make your home feel like a French dream come true. 

For your inspiration, we’ve rounded up a few key ways to embrace French-inspired design for your next room or whole home renovation. 

Prep the palette

Whether or not you’re lucky enough to enjoy a home that boasts walls with interesting architectural details like intricate molding, height, or curves - do as the French do and opt for generous use of bright white paint. This can help any room reach its maximum size potential as light reflects and vertical surfaces pop. 

Paris France French apartment living room, white molding, velvet pink sofa, yellow accent chair, fireplace, mirror

Photo credit: The Socialite Family 

Paris France French kitchen, red white linen tablecloth, bistro chairs, flowers, black and white diamond tile flooring

Photo credit: Kasha Paris

Underfoot, French design favors herringbone and chevron-laid wood or parquet flooring warmed with dramatic area rugs in primary living spaces. To offset a space becoming too austere, earn back warmth through ceiling to floor drapery and liberal use of materials like sumptuous velvet and Belgian linen.

White molded walls Paris France French apartment, linen sofa, chevron wood floors, modern furnishings

Photo credit: A+B Kasha

When it comes to hardware and lighting, embrace materials like solid brass and porcelain, reminiscent of hand-forged masterpieces of an age gone by, to bring a full French look to fruition.

Paris France French balcony, white cremone window hardware, chevron hardwood floors, curved side table, black iron

Photo credit: Damsel in Dior

Paris France French bathroom, light hardwood floors, wide plank, vintage chair, porcelain door hardware, wallmount sinks

Photo credit: Nomibis

Fancy fresh details

If it’s thoughts of the romantic French countryside that makes your heart skip a beat, leaning in the direction of natural elements can be just what you need. Think muted florals, organic textures, and fluid shapes that layer as beautifully as a fresh-baked croissant. 

Paris France French living, linen bench, orange mustard velvet pillows, floral mural wallpaper, black white shag rug

Photo credit: NordRoom 

Paris France French dining, floral walpaper, fireplace, bistro chairs, mirror table napkins, curtains

In a more literal sense, French country scenes come vibrantly to life on toile patterned fabrics and wallpaper and can be a delightful addition to any room of the house. Balancing this motif with more relaxed furnishings, punchy pops of color, and rich tone flooring can prevent a space from becoming too sophisticated or formal. 

Paris France French, toile wallpaper fuschia desk, copper teapot kettle pitcher, mans face oil painting, hardwood floors

Photo credit: House Beautiful/Christopher Delaney

Paris France French bedroom, toile bedspread, wall gframe allery, herringbone brick floors, orange pillows, archwaysMy French Country Home Magazine

Indulge in occasional decadence

One of the most telling characteristics of French style, as is evident in both interior design and fashion, is an effortless, iconic appeal. At first blush, it may seem elusive for anyone this side of the pond to achieve, but never fear, it’s easier than it seems.

The secret? The French have achieved mastery in balance. Like the culinary art of finding the right mix of salt, fat, acid, and heat for the perfect dish, this aesthetic is founded in the philosophy that no good interior is without moments of levity and brightness to offset subdued, neutral, or more timeless bases. This means that a well-placed risk of whimsy will reap rewards, bringing to boil a harmonized Parisian point of view.  

Paris France French bedroom study, antique bed, white walls, pink walls, fireplace mirror, wood ceiling beams, girl room

Photo credit: Haleigh Chastain Walsworth

Unexpected color and pattern, whether on walls or floors, intermixed with traditional touches is a no-fail tactic to try. The same applies to contemporary stylings juxtaposed with vintage – it's all about balancing to a proportion that achieves both livable and lovable. 

Paris France French antique desk, chevron wood floors, black metal modern chair, robins egg blue paint, striped walls

Photo credit: House Beautiful/Christopher Delaney

Paris France French kitchen, bistro chairs, blue green cabinets tile backsplash, light wood floors, antique single lightMy French Country Home Magazine

In the end, remember to look beyond the pages of design magazines to bring your design vision to life. Turn instead to inspiration from the French lifestyle itself that instigated daydreaming in the first place. From the pastel hues of macaron delights, ribbon-wrapped lilac bouquets, and worn leather seats on seaside train travel – your destination awaits.     

Inspired to make your French dreams a reality? Stop by one of our showrooms or schedule an In-Home Shopping appointment today to discuss your options with one of our Flooring Experts.