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Country is a classic decorating style. A country-style living room is warm and welcoming. It invites friends and family to sit down and get cosy. You don't need to live in a farmhouse, saltbox or log cabin to create country-style rooms. The elements of country decorating are also at home in city lofts and newly built homes. Whether you are a fan of traditional country, modern country, primitive country or eclectic country style, you can create a homey atmosphere in your living room.
Install wainscoting or beadboard halfway up the walls. Top with moulding and paint the rest of the wall in a country hue like grey blue, mustard yellow or barn red. Paper the wall above the wainscoting. Choose paper with a small country floral print.
Stencil a border around the top of the wall under the ceiling or install crown moulding.
Paint a mural of a country scene on one wall.
Put up knotty pine panelling for a log cabin effect. Soften it with a coat of milk paint to let the knots show through.
Lay wide plank pine flooring. Distress the floor before you stain and seal it or leave it unfinished to weather naturally.
Spread out a large braided rug or a faded Oriental area rug. Dot the floor with rag rugs.
Paint a checkerboard pattern on the whole floor or stencil a border around the perimeter.
Install beadboard on the ceiling. Paint it white or leave it natural.
Put up ceiling beams. Hang bunches of dried herbs, flowers and baskets from the beams.
Cover the ceiling with decorative tin panels.
Hang tab curtains in muslin or linen on wooden dowels.
Dress your windows with plain cotton tieback curtains.
Substitute a vintage lace tablecloth for curtains. Attach it to the window frame with small nails or push pins.
House your television and other electronic gear in an antique armoire or weathered cupboard. Substitute an old trunk for a traditional coffee table.
Place a farm table behind the couch or along a wall to serve as a buffet for casual dining.
Display collections or family photographs on top of a vintage dry sink or antique cupboard.
Create a conversation area. Place two wingback chairs opposite a camelback couch on either side of a large coffee table built of pine planks. Opt for English country flair with leather club chairs and an overstuffed sofa upholstered in faded chintz.
Pull a Windsor-style rocking chair up to the fire. Bring the outside in by drawing up two Adirondack chairs. Stack vintage suitcases near a chair to act as a side table or turn over a large crock to serve the same purpose. Choose small, one-drawer end tables to hold flowers and books.
Scatter pillows covered in quilt scraps or burlap grain sacks on the couch. Hang a large quilt behind the couch or a crib-size one above the fireplace.
Dress floor lamps with punched tin shades or shades in muted plaid fabric.
March a collection of folk art decoys across the mantel.
Frame antique or reproduction samplers. Hang them in a group on the wall above a primitive dry sink or pie safe. Line up grapevine wreaths above the mantel or behind the couch.
Fill a crock with dried flowers and herbs and place it on the coffee table. Gather a group of antique rag dolls and place them in a wooden cradle. Place it on the hearth.
- Country Living: Decorating Ideas for a Living Room
- Country Sampler Magazine: Come Sit for a Spell
- "Shades of Country;" Chippy Irvine; 2006
- "Classic Country;" Kathryn M. Ireland; 2007
- Hemera Technologies/Photos.com/Getty Images