European Cottage

European Cottage is a general term used to describe elements of French Country and Shabby Chic. The interiors are relaxed and inviting due to the informal furnishings and muted pastel palette. Distressed wood and cast iron surfaces give the impression of found treasures that have family history. The upholstery tends to feature slipcovers and a soft tone on tone pattern. While French Country is associated with blue and yellow, it is just as common to incorporate green, lavender, and rust. Mixing patterns adds to the fuss-free atmosphere. Wallpaper gives the room pattern and a cozy elegance. Many interiors also display collections of kitchenware, family photos, farm animals, and candles.

Some ideas for the European Country feel:

~ Mix florals, toile, and plaid patterns
~ Tea-stained fabrics with ties to secure them
~ Fresh flowers; Lavender and Sunflowers
~ Off white or painted furnishings
~ Painted tile accents

Mediterranean Design

European Seaside has a distinct feel to other coastal regions around the world. Wrought iron and elegant carved furnishings are accented with rustic textures. The hilly landscapes feature lime washed stucco, terracotta roof lines, refined courtyards, and vibrant shutters. Inside, the color and textures continue through mosaic tile accents, dark stained carved pine, stone fireplaces, and ceiling beams. Terracotta floors are usually covered with woven sisal, while the furnishings are carved wood trim overstuffed leather. Pottery creates wonderful splashes of pattern and color throughout the space.

Creating Casual Mediterranean:

~ Archways framed by wood columns
~ Wall Tapestries featuring historic or vineyard motifs
~ Rustic mantels with over scaled candlesticks
~ Wrought iron
~ Large farmhouse table
~ Cobalt, lime, mandarin, and turquoise color palette

Tuscany

Wine country couture is comfortable and inviting. Carved wood casegoods are strong, yet intricately carved. Sunlit farmhouse style rooms feature plaster walls and exposed timbers. Aged wine racks, iron chandeliers, and reed baskets may be accented by hand-blown Murano glass vases with sunflowers or lavender. Family and the gathering of friends encourage kitchen décor in all living areas of the home. Tone on tone stencils add visual interest to the pitted and mottled walls. Veined marble creates contrast and simplicity. Furnishings do not need to match, giving the feel of acquired wealth.

Tuscan Simplicity:

~ Color Palette: Eggplant, olive, rust, mustard, buff, and azure
~ Patterns and Fabrics: Toile, lace, damask, and chintz
~ Wrought Iron, nailhead, and copper vessels
~ Mosaic inlay