How to create a country kitchen style
Friday, 21st February 2014, Jane Gibson
Whether you live out in the sticks or in a tiny city apartment, it's always possible to create a kitchen with a country look. These sorts of kitchens are particularly ideal for families, as they provide a warm, welcoming space where everyone will want to hang out. On the other hand, if you just have a love for all things vintage and rustic, a country kitchen is ideal for you too.
White is one of the most popular colour choices for country style kitchens, but if you choose this colour then make sure you don't swamp the room with it, otherwise it can feel cold and sterile. To avoid this, remember to add accents of colour. For example you could have white kitchen cabinets and walls, but you might opt for a colourful fridge and cooker - perhaps in green or blue. Some homeowners also choose to have wooden flooring in a white kitchen to continue that natural country feel.
If you don't want to have a white kitchen, try to stick to soft tones, such as yellow or green. Additionally, you could keep the cabinets in their natural wood tone, rather than repainting them. Some people even go a step further and distress their wooden cabinets and tables to make their kitchen look rustic.
Those that have the money to do so might want to invest in traditional kitchen appliances too. An Aga is a popular choice with country kitchen owners, as not only does it look fabulous, it cooks amazing food and keeps the house lovely and warm in the winter. You could also have a retro fridge; a Smeg, for example, would go down very well in an American-style country kitchen.
Mix old and new
If you don't want to buy fancy retro appliances you can always stick to your beloved modern day ones. There's nothing wrong with mixing old and new in a country kitchen and in fact, it sometimes works really well. You could have a really old, distressed wooden kitchen island that you found in an antique shop, but instead of keeping the wooden surface you could top it with a slab of granite. The great things about this kitchen style is that they are allowed to look jumbled together. Some things work better together than others of course, so it's a good idea to see what looks good and what doesn't before committing to them.
There are a number of ways to carry off the 'cobbled together' look. Head to an antique shop or carboot sale and see what great finds you can pick up. If you find four different chairs you like, why not bring them home and set them up at your dinner table. Some people even choose to have varying types of kitchen handles attached to their cabinets.
Have everything on display
Everything can be made into a feature in a country kitchen. Take off the doors to your kitchen cabinets to create open shelving instead, so you can neatly display all your beautiful crockery. Alternatively, choose kitchen cabinets with glass doors to create a similar, open effect. You could even store your food items the old fashion way, by keeping pasta, rice and baking ingredients inside glass jars or bottles. There's no need to put away your blender, old kettle or vintage coffee grinder either, as they all make great, eye-catching features. You've never had a better excuse to be lazy!
What makes any kitchen design is the accessories. For a country kitchen you'll want to bring nature inside; this includes flowers, farm animals and food items. Dried wildflowers could be hung on the wall or you could keep fresh flowers on your kitchen table. They don't have to be stored in a fancy vase though, just use one of your old, chipped milk jugs. Bowls of fruit or vegetables left on the side will not only remind you to eat them, they'll look great too. As for farm animals, it's not recommended you keep a pig in your kitchen, but ceramics and images of roosters, sheep and ducks look at home in a country kitchen.
To make your kitchen table look a bit more rustic and homely, add an embroidered tablecloth or runner. You could also have benches in place of chairs; although if you're planning on sitting at the table for long periods of time this might not be a wise option, as you could get backache. If you are using some old chairs but find them uncomfortable, tie a cushion to the seat. You can either make these yourself or buy them. Home-made items really do fit the country theme well though, so make use of those talents if you possess them.
The kitchen should smell the part as well as look the part, so have some potpourri, oils or candles in your kitchen to emulate your favourite scents. Popular choices include smells of cinnamon, strawberry and apple. Some places even sell candles that smell like your favourite foods, such as lemon drizzle cake or apple pie - these will go down great in your kitchen.
If you're craving to have a room in your house that's retro and a bit rough around the edges, the kitchen is the perfect place to do it. By the end of your renovation, you should have a kitchen that's light, airy and full of character.