We spoke last week about some of the classics and what makes something a classic, but what about style? Do you have a particular style and if you did are you able to title it? Webster’s dictionary defines style as a distinctive manner of expression, or a particular manner or technique by which something is done, created, or performed. So when planning a space or redecorating, it is beneficial to define your style to yourself or your decorator as clearly as possible. Last week we moved from the hills of Tuscany to the coastal seaside; so how about a romp in the French Countryside this week? Let’s take a peek at a peaceful master bedroom retreat decorated in French Country style somewhere in the heart of The Villages.

• Elements of French Country Style Peaceful Retreat
There are some key elements that will be found in all classic French Country style décor. You may not be able to have all of the key elements but there will be a few that provide a visual clue to the style you are trying to achieve. Usually, there will be a ceiling treatment of some type such as exposed beams or coffered ceilings.
There will most certainly be distressed furniture. There is usually a printed fabric of some type, hardwood floors and fabric window treatments.

• Ceiling
This villa is a two story villa and at least twenty years old. The ceiling on the main floor was popcorn and had some discoloration from water damage. We had the choice to re-surface the ceiling with knock down or cover the ceiling with a wood treatment. We chose a bead board treatment to cover the entire ceiling on the main floor. The ceiling has cross beams that give it a slightly coffered look. Truthfully, this treatment can fit into many looks when painted white because it looks neutral enough to move from French Country to coastal to mid-century modern.

• Flooring
Warm wood floors will usually appear in French Country Style and they are definitely appearing here! The flooring is Tawny Maple and it is a stunner! The warm wood has variation and remains light in the space. This is engineered hardwood that is glued down to the slab and abuts to the tile in the bathroom without a threshold for a smooth transition from wood to tile.

• Larger baseboards
We did install large baseboards for a more decorative look because French Country utilizes large moldings. Also, we installed seven inch crown molding to finish off the bead board ceilings. Larger molding is a part of French country due to the influences of Versailles but much less ornate.

• Paint
The Paint color is Patience 7555. This is the perfect crème color and keeps the space bright.

• Windows
Usually, in French Country there would be graceful and long window treatments that work with at least one other pattern in the room but that is not the case in this master bedroom. The homeowners wanted the room to be crisp and bright, so molding was the best way to treat the windows in this space. The window had a new large blind with two inch slates. We trimmed the windows and added a decorative header which creates the illusion of a shutter but has the functionality of a blind.

• Distressed Furniture
All the furniture is new in the space but it does not look new because it is distressed. The lines of the headboard have a graceful curve providing a feminine line and softness in the space, while the finish looks as if it was purchased at a Parisian antique market.

• Print
There will need to be a printed fabric in any French Country space and the print in this room is the comforter. The comforter and shams came as a set and we added the rest. We love the rich oversized damask pattern but if we just left the bed white the room would feel flat.

• Bedding
We had to add texture to the space through bedding. We started by adding a blue coverlet on the bed as the base bedspread. We then added three Square Euro pillows against the headboard. The soft blue popped against the white headboard. The king shams that came with the set were laid in front of the Euros. Finally, the comforter that came with the shams was pulled back and folded so that the patterns match and the comforter looks like a bed scarf at the end of the bed. The blue makes everything come to life and provides a visual appreciation against the crème.

• Art
The homeowner wanted the bedroom to remain soft and inviting. We chose a piece that again looks like it came from a Paris market. The piece is inspired by Parisian architecture and when left white it makes a statement but a soft statement.

• Lamps
The lamps are a blue crackle ceramic with a burlap shade. They are the perfect complement to the blue on the bed and the burlap shades work with the burlap accent pillow as well.

• Rug
The rug is multi-colored jute and it looks perfect. I like to angle a 5×8 in a space like this because if we used an 8×10 most of the rug would disappear under the bed. With a 5×8 we can angle the rug and the eye is pulled into the space.