French Country Fabrics
Americans continue to fall in love with anything French, especially Country French! Even so, the look can be a bit overwhelming to the untrained eye. Success requires a basic knowledge of color, patterns and furnishings. Once you possess that knowledge, you're well on your way to creating beautiful spaces.
With the number of fabrics associated with a French look, your options are unlimited. But how do you choose the right ones?
- Start with an easy formula: checks, stripes, small prints and toile.
- Checks – large and small – go well with everything.
- Stripes in two colors or more (including stripe/florals) always have a French feel.
- Small patterns made up of bees, flowers and roosters say warm, friendly and fun!
- Tapestries and trims are another great addition. Use tapestry to cover a footstool or chair, and tassels and trims work wonderfully on draperies and pillows.
Toiles are usually medium-sized patterns depicting scenes of rural life. You could use this pattern for draperies, chairs, sofas or pillows. From there, go to a check pattern either larger or smaller than the toile. As a third pattern, choose a small print. Keep in mind that Country French colors run from bright mustards, reds and blues to soft greens, beiges and whites.
Fabric companies, such as Pierre Deux, Thibault and Schumacher, make patterns that are strictly French. Study fabric patterns to see how they mix together. Walk around a fabric store and group samples until three main patterns come together and stand out.
Country French says comfort and warmth. Surround yourself with colors and patterns that say "welcome" in French – or American.