Thursday, December 26, 2013

Ideas For A French Country Front Porch

French country style blends form and function for elegance.

The French country style celebrates ease, relaxation and the welcome of warm, informal hospitality. Creating a French country front porch means blending furniture styles with color and plants to create an overall visual effect that is timeless: neither modern nor antique. Combining the old with the new and adding formal touches to informal settings and vice versa provide the visual contrasts that typify the French country style. Does this Spark an idea?


French country colors are warm and inviting, reflecting the colors and textures of nature. Choose warm reds, French blues or natural browns and greens. Mix more vibrant colors with neutral creams and ivories to create harmony. Small splashes of bright color look better on a small porch than allowing the color to dominate the area.

Plant Containers

Creating a French country look is about reflecting the textures of nature, so bringing plants onto the porch helps to complete the look. Choose terracotta pots or urns with curved lines and surface decoration. Go for wrought iron or other metalwork baskets or plant holders, or add woven baskets or wooden planters and troughs. Plant choices should include fragrant herbs such as lavender or thyme. Climbing and trailing plants make good use of porch railings and add structure, as well as color. Choose flowering plants that echo the colors of the porch when they bloom.


Weathered finishes are a hallmark of the French country decorating style, so don't be afraid to shop in thrift stores or accept hand-me-downs when looking for suitable porch furniture. Hand-distress tables or chairs if they look too new and pristine, or crackle-glaze them with some of the specialist paints available in home improvement stores. Use furniture made from natural materials such as solid wood or wrought iron, and keep the lines clean and simple. The French country style is functionally elegant, with emphasis on beautiful pieces that are utilitarian instead of solely decorative.


Common themes in French country style are herbs such as lavender, wine and grape-growing, and chickens and roosters. While it's not necessary to decorate or accessorize with a theme in mind, choose decorative ornaments or fittings that will help unify the French country atmosphere and appearance. Details matter in any decor, and a porch is no different. If you have a glazed front door with drapes, for instance, choose fabric to reflect the porch style. Toile is an ideal choice, as the neutral background readily complements other accessories. Choose functional accessories, such as candleholders or iron wall brackets to hold plants, rather than items that decorate but have no other use.

Tags: French country, country style, French country style, French country, Creating French, Creating French country