French Provincial: one of our favorite styles! What is it that makes this style so gorgeous? And how can you blend your new French Provincial kitchen into the rest of your home?
Let’s take a step back in time. After WW1, soldiers returning home brought with them inspiration gathered from the homes and decor they had seen in rural France during their time there. And the homely, rustic, country style of these southern French homes (now known as French Provincial), became popular around the world for 3 simple reasons: it was functional, affordable and still elegant.
To create a French Provincial kitchen that compliments the rest of your home, you must understand the key elements of the style:
It exudes warmth and homeliness. It’s comforting, inviting and cosy. While still being elegant and rustic, it’s designed for everyday use and practicality – a family kitchen that sings home baking and happy memories.
Back to nature. French Provincial style has it’s roots in the country, and that’s where the colors are inspired too. Cream, white, terracotta, natural wood, blue, olive, taupe, grey… I think you get the idea. Spring; summer; autumn; winter – all the seasons are portrayed in this natural, organic palette.
Textures and materials
When planning your kitchen, it’s important to choose the right materials. Steer away from modern synthetics. Instead, turn your focus to wood, porcelain, wicker, copper, stone, and linen – materials that are long-lasting and good quality. Keep it simple.
Attention to detail
It’s the little things that add big value. Patterned cornice, quaintly carved cabinetry doors, carved corbels, motifs, glass fronted doors and leadlight windows. Think about incorporating woven baskets for storage or window shutters for an added design feature. Include space to display beautiful china, family heirlooms, and antiques. If your budget can stretch to a handpainted finish on cabinetry, this is a sure-fire way of adding authenticity to this style. It’s this added elegance that sets the French Provincial kitchen apart from other country styles.
Traditionally, French Provincial kitchens tend to be large and favor freestanding cabinetry rather than fixed. Lovingly crafted and designed for practical, everyday use, they often incorporate large, freestanding ovens and either built in or canopy range hoods. Island benches are a common addition, as is the butler’s pantry where space permits. Cabinetry typically is full height, with every possible inch of space put to good use.
Lighting is, as always, a very important feature. Maximum natural light is first and foremost, however, the French Provincial kitchen often features ornate pendant lights over the island bench. Lighting must be gentle and complimentary but strategically placed to create a real statement. Mirrored surfaces can be used to reflect the light and add that extra touch of magic, and lamps can be used to add atmosphere and warmth.
The team at Wonderful kitchens can help you create a French Provincial kitchen that compliments the rest of your home. Call us today on 02 9772 2988 for a friendly chat with one of our staff. We love this style as much as you do!