The French are known for their effortlessly classy yet functional style. This is why when it comes to fashion and lifestyle, the rest of the world turns to the home of the Eiffel Tower for inspiration.
French-ing up your villa is not that difficult to do. There’s no need for a massive overhaul. Adding a few details here and there and treating surfaces a certain way can easily do the trick. So, if you want a robust French flavor to your home interior, here are the seven easiest ways to achieve it.
1. Add molding to plain walls, door, and windows.
There’s nothing like old-world frames or accents to give your home interior that regal French feel. You can easily buy molding from hardware stores and glue them on your walls, around your doors and windows, and fireplace (if you have one). Just make sure that everything is aligned neatly.
Now, if you want to give your molding the vintage finish that the French love, paint it the color you want and give it a slightly weathered look. You can do this by lightly sponge-painting the high points of the molding in gold or some other brassy hue.
2. Create an accent wall.
Accent walls are also typical of French homes, which are typically made using wallpapers with ornate patterns. But, wallpaper is not your only option, you can opt for concrete paint and finish paint that will provide not only a lovely splash of color but also texture to the wall.
Accent walls create a fresh look by altering the lighting and dimensional appearance of the room.
3. Paint and finish those floors.
If you have concrete floors, explore the different decorative concrete coatings
available. There are options similar to traditional French home floorings, as well as, modern finishes identical to what you would see in a lot of hotels and business establishments in France.
And, the main principle to remember when it comes to upgrading your floors the French way with paint is to opt for neutral hues. Black, white, grey, wood, and light terracotta are some of the best picks.
4. Install big mirrors.
Parisian homes are rarely spacious. Therefore, it’s crucial to create the illusion of a bigger space. For this, big mirrors are the solution. There’s nothing like a strategically placed mirror to improve indoor illumination and make a room seem bigger than it really is.
But, for that French touch, go for framed mirrors – particularly, those with chunky frames that look lovely over a fireplace or the hallway console table.
5. Add luxurious lighting fixtures.
Crystal chandeliers, table lamps, sconces, and even candelabras provide that much-adored French vibe. Place them all over your home for that lovely warm glow.
These lighting fixtures can be rather expensive. So, if you are looking for a big discount or an affordable deal, make sure to check out yard sales, flea markets, and even your local junk shop. The junkshop, especially, is a treasure trove of home decor that you can spruce up a bit or completely upcycle.
6. Decorate with flowers.
The stereotypical image of a French woman is someone who is dressed comfortably but also stylishly, and she carries a brown paper bag of baguettes and flowers.
The flowers are certainly not for eating but for livening up a French home’s interior. Blooms are a lovely sight in any home. They add color, spark conversation, and engender a sense of calm or stillness. And, to beautifully display flowers, invest in crystal vases, which you can find abundantly in flea markets.
7. Lay out some books for display.
Frenching up your villa is not complete without a display of tomes. Books are perhaps the most affordable decor of a French home. A quite often, they just turn into decor because it’s typical of the French to read regularly – hence, they have books lying around the house all the time.
Stack books on the coffee table in your living room. Use them as well to add height to lamps and vases. Plus, display them in bookshelves along with various trinkets.
Indeed the French are masters of classic style. Thankfully, adopting their aesthetics is not that difficult, especially for home interior design. With the tips shared above, you can transform your villa into a gorgeous yet cozy French retreat without spending a tremendous amount of money.
Ralph El Eid is the Business Development Manager at COLORTEK – Wall & Floor Fashion. EQUIPAINT is the franchise owner of COLORTEK in Dubai (U.A.E.) and Doha (Qatar); an international paints manufacturer specializing in the widest range of decorative paints and seamless concrete & resin flooring, with a unique showroom concept, and thus an ideal destination for homeowners, consultants, architects, interior designers and paint applicators.