French Country Defined
The French Country style of décor is a cross between the elegant and the rustic. This attractive style adds bright, happy colors, like pinks, yellows, oranges, lavenders and light hues of blue and green, to walls, curtains and other furnishings. Floors and walls are often tiled in patterns utilizing these colors.
Also, small prints, often in flowered or fruited patterns, and whitewashed woods in pastel colors add to the French Country appearance. Roosters and sunflowers in various forms are commonly used to decorate this style as well.
The French Country home seeks to radiate a bright, warm springtime atmosphere, like what would be found in the flowering fields of France when they are bursting to life under a beaming sun. Therefore, home lighting should be used to help create and enhance this effect.
Since soft, pastel colors are used in tiles and paints on the walls, oftentimes with flower, butterfly, etc patterns included, using spotlights or recessed lights to illuminate the walls is a good effect. Torchiere lamps can also be used for this purpose, especially in corners.
Track lighting fixtures work nicely in a French Country design, especially if you select a model which fits in well with the overall design. Track lights can be moved and rotated to splash specific areas or objects in warm light, satisfying the goal of the French Country home. The effects of track lighting are further amplified if you utilize halogen or xenon light bulbs as they produce a bright, sun-like radiance.
Wall sconces with pastel colored housings add accentual beauty to a room, as do low-voltage LED strip fixtures placed in areas where a soft, warm glow is required. LED strip light run up a staircase, or along the baseboards of a hallway, is a way to provide needed light without it being overbearing.
Undercabinet lighting placed in the kitchen, bar area, underneath large bookshelves and in curio cabinets provides a warm source of background light or for highlighting decorative and treasured objects. Again, try out various bulb types to see which effect best suites the mood you’re trying to create.
Correctly applying and utilizing light fixtures and bulbs can greatly enhance the effect of your French Country home by brightening the atmosphere and causing those special design details to stand out. Use light to bring to life your piece of French countryside!