How to create a French-style home

Looking for French-style decorating ideas? Check out our decorating guide to creating a French-style bedroom, study, living room and hallway

Mix generous armchairs with classic occassional chairs in the living room. Prop up gilt-framed mirrors against the wall for an informal feel and pull the whole scheme together with a textured rug. Use a giant clock to make a focal point above the mantelpiece and choose cushions with a hint of gold for added glamour.

If this is the look for you, don’t miss our shabby chic decorating ideas.

1/7 Choose tickings and linens for upholstery

french style decorating armchair

(Image credit: Future PLC/Jon Day)

Find similarly-styled armchairs and knitted throws at House of Fraser, cushions at John Lewis and a similar coffee table at The Decorator Source. The wall clock is from Graham and Green.

2/7 Bring a touch of feminine chic to walls

french style decorating walls

(Image credit: Future PLC/Jon Day)

Complement a charmingly-faded table-top display with spectacular hydrangea patterned wallpaper.

Find a range of patterned wallpaper at Cole & Son, antique-style lanterns at India Jane and side tables at The Decorator Source. The candlestick is from Lorford Antiques.

3/7 Position a prettily-carved desk

french style decorating desk

(Image credit: Future PLC/Jon Day)

Be creative with room space. Make a desk area with a painted table and a vintage chair, then soften a stone floor with a woven rug and decorate the walls with monochrome prints and paintings.

The desk is from Chelsea Textiles, and the vintage chair is from Pale & Interesting. Similar style rugs can be found at Sharland & Lewis. Paintings and engravings are stocked by The Decorator Source.

4/7 Opt for ornate bedlinen

bedroom with wooden flooring and double bed

(Image credit: Future PLC/Jon Day)

To add detail in a white bedroom, dress the bed with layers of lace, fringed throws and heaps of crisp, broderie Anglais-edged pillowcases. Blend white with white in a chateau-style bedroom by layering textures - for example, crunchy crocheted cotton over smooth bedlinen.

The headboard can be found at Classics Direct, the cushions at The Conran ShopLinwood and John Lewis. The boho crochet throw is from An Angel At My Table, and the blanket is from Lunn Antiques.

5/7 Display shawls and jewellery

mannequin with white dress

(Image credit: Future PLC/Jon Day)

A vintage mannequin is an ideal place to show off necklaces, evening purses and lace pieces.

Find a similar vintage mannequin at Vintage Style Mannequins.

6/7 Frame a window with shutters and blinds

window seating with cushions

(Image credit: Future PLC/Jon Day)

Sew a homemade blind using an outsized gilded print on a linen ground. Check out our guide to creating your own ribbon blind. Complete the look with a pair of vintage shutters and a selection of linen and velvet cushions.

The blind is from Chivasso, and the gold ties from VV Rouleaux. Find shutters from Amy Perry, and a selection of cushions from House of Fraser.

7/7 Showcase items from the parfumerie

room with white wall and accessories

(Image credit: Future PLC/Jon Day)

Apothecary jars are ideal for displaying gorgeous handmade French soaps. Collect vintage jars whenever you see them and turn into a display.

Amy PerryCologne & CottonIndia Jane and Pale & Interesting all stock vintage jars. 

Loved this? Check out our guide to getting the 'Prairie-style look' in your home.


Tamara was Ideal Home's Digital Editor before joining the Woman & Home team in 2022. She has spent the last 15 years working with the style teams at Country Homes & Interiors and Ideal Home, both now at Future PLC. It’s with these award wining interiors teams that she's honed her skills and passion for shopping, styling and writing. Tamara is always ahead of the curve when it comes to interiors trends – and is great at seeking out designer dupes on the high street.