Charming kitchen featuring a table and chairs

How Do French Country and English Country Decor Differ?

English and French country decor have their distinct styles and visual appeal.

French decor is more elegantly rustic, symbolizing a quaint country life. English decor is dominated by heavy floral prints and hunting scenes that symbolize tradition and power.

French aesthetics are characterized by sophistication and elegance. On the other hand, English aesthetics perfectly balance tradition and modernity.

Although both design ideologies exude simplicity, certain decor elements like prints, textures, and fabrics, as well as certain minute details, set them apart from each other.

All these details make a world of difference when transforming the interiors.

In this blog, we will discuss each decor’s elements separately and what differentiates the two schools.

Elements of French Country Decor

A charming collage of rooms showcasing French Country Decor in a cozy home

French country decor stands for refined rusticity. The warm tones of paint on the walls and careless placement of distressed furniture create the perfect balance of elegance and earthiness against the backdrop of the French countryside.

Here are a few features that characterize French country decor:

1. Ornate and Antique Elements: From ornate glass pieces to antique chandeliers and from gold picture frames to timeless oil paintings, such elements add a touch of elegance to a space.

2. Minimal French Furniture: Minimal French furniture includes simple pieces like chairs. Simple toile cushions accentuate clean lines and subtle details here and there. This adds a vintage vibe to the space and is extremely pleasing.

3. Distressed Wooden Furniture: Exposed wooden beams on ceilings are a classic French style. The distressed wooden flooring adds to the rustic vibe of the house and matches well with the rest of the furniture placed in various corners of the house.

4.  Warm Neutral: Neutral shades like beige, cream, off-white, and grey are classic French country house colors. The house’s bright paintings and multi-colored upholstery go well with the neutral hues.

5. Farm Animals and Birds: From cushions and couch covers to ladles and spoons, farm animals and birds feature all the decorative elements in a country house. Roosters, dogs, cattle, and rabbits are all found in some element that adds to the provincial charm.

6. French Country Kitchen: Mustard yellow and warm reds dominate the cooking space in country kitchens. The mossy green color of French kitchens differentiates them from English kitchens.

Elements of English Country Decor

A cozy room filled with bookshelves and chairs,

Tradition and comfort are the two main elements that define English country decor. With rusticity as the unique selling point of English country decor, it incorporates more vibrant colors than French.

Here are a few features that characterize English country decor:

1. Floral Patterns: The English country decor is all about floral patterns on couches, botanical prints on curtains, and natural hues on the upholstery. These elements can be visually overwhelming, but that’s how the beautiful English countryside is.

2. Maximalist Fully Upholstered Furniture: Typical English decor features fully upholstered sofas and rocking chairs in a room. The charm is heightened by floral prints on cream or a black background featuring the famous hydrangea flowers, peonies, and roses. Stripes and chintz are also used quite liberally in studies and even kitchens.

3. Decor with Hunting Scenes: Paintings and other wall hangings with hunting scenes of various kinds are a staple in every English countryside house. These wall hangings symbolize tradition and rural heritage that the British are proud of.

4. Thatched Roofs: Thatched roofs are more commonly found in the English countryside than in France. These roofs are classic, scream traditional ideas of opulence, and have a unique charm.

5. Muted Color Palette: The overall color palette is muted, but the English do not shy away from introducing pops of color here and there. The wallpapers feature small floral country prints and stripes. Gingham print on upholstery is another English decor staple.

6. Literature Corner: How can an English country house not have a reading nook? Huge walled book racks and a leather lounging chair in a library with a fireplace scream English countryside. Bay windows, also called Oriel windows in England, are a space that is ideal for reading enthusiasts.

Do you want to read more about this? Check out our previous blog that thoroughly covers English country decor.


Whether in France or England, the appeal of the countryside is always charming.

English country decor is rooted in tradition and encompasses a rustic country charm.

The French country decor, on the other hand, leans towards a more sophisticated and elegant interior dominated by accessories that have a vintage vibe.

The two schools of aesthetics have their style quotient and are timeless.

Now the choice is yours. Are you more inspired by the cultured French countryside or the understated, lavish English estate?

Leave your thoughts in the comments section below.

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