French Country vs Tuscan Styles in Interior Design


Happy Spring! Well….kind of…. This Winter has been a rough one for many people in the Northeast and here in Ohio we have had a lot more snow, ice and cold weather than normal…not as bad as some, but still a hard winter. I can’t help but to LOVE some of the beautiful French Country decor with all the flowers, greenery, and the thought of a golden sunset over a countryside….Ahhh….

Last week I had the pleasure of delving into the French Country vs. Tuscan style of decor for my client. I think it is a bit confusing for the average person. The 2 styles have originated geographically side by side. One in Franch and the other in Northern Italy. They are basically neighbors.

There are several items that distinguish “real” French Country style. One is the use of lots and lots of different fabrics. In one room you can have between 7 and 11 different fabrics. One of those will have to be a “toile” and most of the time the colors are reds, greens and yellows. Another is to make sure your walls are either white, or very light cream paint. Floors are mostly wood floors with area rugs. Accessories are everywhere! Plants, baskets, picture frames, clay pots, 2 table cloths, pillows, pillows and pillows, and if you really want to scream French Country you Have to have a Rooster in the room too.

So, what exactly is Tuscan??? Tuscan style is basically the same color scheme but just more rustic in nature. Tuscan walls can be bold colors, “Venetian Plaster” finishes….(remember, we are in Italian style now) Weathered Iron furnishings and accessories. Lots of Golds throughout. Grapes, Wine racks, wine bottles, old buckets….For those of you who have never been to “Tuscany” they have rows and rows and rows of vineyards, and last but not least….Sunflowers!

As you can see there are a lot of similarities but some distinct differences also. I absolutely LOVE both of these styles. As an Interior Designer, they are the most complicated styles to design with because there are so many layers and details involved. It is very challenging and very rewarding as well.




Better Than A Sunburst!

ImageThis Beautiful Window Treatment was created by Fine Designs Drapery Workroom a couple years ago. I was recently in the home to do another project and thought this was definately worthy of mentioning. Many people don’t know what to do with full arch windows and end up with one of those sheer “sunburst” things in their windows which always seem to sag. That is one of my pet peeves…a poorly made sunburst! To change the thinking process, I tend to swag fabric over posts, drapery hardware or even door knobs to draw the eye up and back down to empahsize the window without covering it up.

This is another idea for an Arched window…A Faux Iron Inset! This has been a favorite of many of my clients this past year. The window has to be templated by us and then I send it in to be fabricated in whatever design we choose in a variety of finishes. All together the process takes about 8 weeks and it is well worth the wait.


For the Fun of it …..this is a photo of an arched opening from where it all started….Italy!