There's nothing quite as inviting and comforting like a cosy country lounge. Whether you live in a rural home or just dream of escaping to the country, country living room ideas will help you achieve this welcoming vibe in your space.
Country inspired living room ideas are surprisingly versatile. There's not just one theme to work with - there's the traditional rustic, the modern interpretation and the chic farmhouse style to name a few variations. Whichever interprtation speaks to you, you're sure to create a lounge that you'll love for year to come.
'When it comes to interiors, the country aesthetic continues to be popular as it offers an elegant, timeless look that brings with it a sense of comfort in the home,' says Emma Deterding, Founder, Kelling Designs.
'Combining character, charm and personality, it can really be transformative and make your home truly feel cosy. It’s all about striking the balance between vintage furniture pieces and playful prints and patterns in bold colours, as this will help to bring the scheme to life. '
Country living room ideas
'The country style can vary anywhere from farmhouse to cottage, so they aren’t any strict rules when it comes to decorating your country living room ideas,' says
Dani Burroughs, Head of Product, Snug.
It’s more about the feeling it gives you and this classic country style should feel simple, tranquil, and homey.'
1. Go for a natural palette
When designing your space, the natural place to begin is with living room colour schemes.
Natural colour palettes instantly transport you into the countryside, so green is an easy and sensible place to begin in country living room ideas. 'As the famous quote goes, inspiration is all around us,' says Dani from Snug. 'Look to nature when you’re pulling together your palette; olive green, taupe, soft blues with natural textures, woods, and dark accents make a great starting point.'
Enhance the look with lashings of botanical prints.
2. Brighten your beams
Rural homes are often limited to only dealing with small living room ideas. Ceilings can be low, windows tiny and doorways narrow.
Counteract this by boosting light levels with some clever but easy tricks. Country living room ideas may have dark wooden beams, so simply paint these white like your ceiling to make the room seem larger and brighter. Of course, the old classic of mirror enhancing light is as true here as anywhere else, so create a wall display of vintage mirrored pieces.
3. Pay attention to your flooring
Living room flooring ideas take up a large proportion of a space, so it's key to get these right. For country style rooms, use this as an opportunity to add texture and charm.
Sisal, seagrass and other woven rugs and carpets add a rustic vibe, while staying softer and warmer underfoot than hard floors. Plus, these materials are incredibly hardwearing, so ideal for busy homes with kids and pets running wild.
4. Choose a themed wallpaper
Use living room wallpapers ideas to set the scene. A themed pattern will instantly enhance your country style and allow you to do more with less.
Nature inspired patterns are the way forward - botanical, animal and floral prints work especially well. Choose either a bold colour or print as country living room ideas are a little softer, so both can be overwhelming in this setting.
5. Include a feature wall
If you don't want to go for all over pattern then take a look at living room feature wall ideas. A country-inspired print or mural, like wood, or a natural scene, will add a hit of pattern without needing to encroach on other spaces.
Link the wall in with the rest of your country living room ideas by including this as part of a limited colour palette of around 3 main shades.
6. Recover old furniture
Part of country living room ideas is the idea of heritage. Pieces should feel like they've been handed down and embody comfort. Unfortunately, when marrying country with modern living room ideas, these two don't always match up, so upgrade what you do have to match it rustic with a contemporary edge,
'In the living room, it’s important to look at the furniture pieces you have already to see which pieces work and which ones can be up-cycled for a fresh lease of life,' advises Emma from Kelling Designs.
'Maybe you have an armchair that has been passed down through the generations that could do with being re-upholstered or a sideboard that could do with a coat of paint. Buttoned detailing, ornate shapes and prints in florals or checks all lend themselves perfectly to the look whilst tables and furniture in wooden finishes will add a rustic charm.'
7. Make a deep statement
How to design a living room can be tricky at the best of times, but when you've got a theme in mind it can be even more challenging.
The trick is to not be too prescriptive to one style. If you're trying to achieve country living room ideas, it doesn't mean you necessarily should stick to the traditionally rural shades. If you want to go bold with deep coloured walls then do it. There's always a country take on things. If you like red, look for deep garnets rather then cherry, for purple think dusky aubergine over violet.
8. Win with a wood burner
For country style living room fireplace ideas, there's really nothing quite like a woodburning stove.
'A soft and welcoming style, country living room ideas appeals to living authentically and enjoying traditional comforts,' says Jon Butterworth, Director, Arada Stoves. 'To make a living room feel more country and create the perfect ambiance, incorporate a wood burning stove.'
'Not only do they suit the classic style of a country home, but they also heat the home and are a true statement piece, allowing homeowners to switch off, wind down and enjoy simpler comforts.'
If you get lucky with home decor discount codes a woodburner may sit neatly within your budget, too.
9. Get the lighting right
'To decorate country living room ideas, use traditional style lighting,' says David Amos, CEO, Amos Lighting + Home. 'Table and floor lamps, with ceramic or metal bases alongside fabric shades, will give a soft, and classic, country look.'
'Layer the room with lamps to add comfort and depth or try using an eclectic mix of shades with different finishes such as, pleats and patterns. You can even consider coordinating a varied mixture of lighting to exude that laid-back, eclectic style that the country look is known for.'
'With the addition of the right living room lighting ideas, country lounges have a warm, gentle vibe, which makes them perfect for relaxing in. Use soft lighting which will give the room a gentle glow, and create a restful and comforting environment, ideal for when a moment of calm is needed.'
10. Play with pattern
'Mixing coordinating fabric patterns and layering soft furnishings will instantly create a country, cosy ambience in country living room ideas,' advises Debbie Leigh, Design Manager, ILIV.
'Chalky colour palettes based on heritage prints always work well in country interiors and are easy to incorporate with plenty of blankets, throws and varying cushion sizes.'
'If you are wanting to go all out and create a bold country interior, then look for large-scale floral blowsy prints, velvet and embroidered fabrics, as these work perfectly for rustic living room ideas and will make an instant impact.'
11. Build in seating and storage
Country homes are bound to have awkward shapes and alcoves to work with. Rather than fight against them, use them to include bespoke built in living room storage ideas in your space.
If you're in a contemporary home, this is also a nifty way of making your space seem a little quirkier and with more history than it actually has.
12. Lay a slate floor
‘Natural stone floor tiles are a great investment for kitchens and living areas, especially for those looking to create a country, farmhouse feel,' says Emma Hughes, Studio Manager, Original Style,
'Whether its classic limestone or a rich, dark slate, natural stone flooring ideas create a timeless canvas that will age beautifully, rewarding you for years to come. Incorporate sumptuous soft furnishings, rustic wood pieces and layers of neutral tones to achieve your perfect, country inspired space.’
13. Make a focal point of original features
If you're lucky enough to own a little cottage in the countryside, why not restore its original features while adding a modern touch?
Sometimes the most simple living room ideas just involve stripping the space back to show off what was there previously. Think mantlepieces, beams and wooden flooring. Surrounding these with more contemporary furniture and decor will enhance the effect fo the original pieces.
14. Show off stonework
Make a real statement by stripping back the plaster in your living room to reveal original joists, bricks and beams. Alternatively, fake it by having a stone wall built in.
You can also use stone-effect wallpaper for more budget living room ideas, but there's nothing quite like the tactile nature of a stone wall.
15. Add texture with limewashed walls
Limewashed or plastered walls are a chic way of achieving a pared back country living room. There a number of ways of creating this type of living room paint ideas, from a slick of lime or chalk paint, to getting the plasterer over to create a rustic effect.
This just depends on what finish you're aiming for and how much time and money you're willing to spend.
16. Make the most of wall panelling
Living room wall decor isn't all pattern and placement of objets - it can also be the form of the wall itself. A very country take on this is through the use of wall panelling.
However, if you're looking for a more modern space, then you'll need to update the panelling accordingly. Colour is an easy and effective way of doing this with either all-over colour, or by painting half the wall.
17. Include vintage furniture
A comfy, worn-in leather armchair by a cosy fire is what springs to mind when we think of country living rooms. Mix old and new together effectively by marrying contemporary living room curtain ideas, printed rugs or artwork with antique furniture.
'A versatile look, true country style can be created just as well with floral fabrics as with soft buttery leathers,' says Suzy McMahon, Buying Director, Sofology. 'Look for relaxed shapes that invite you to sink into them at the end of the day.
Although seat height should always be based on personal preference, lower backs with wooden feet are naturally in keeping with a rustic scheme.'
18. Add elegant touches
Create a grand country retreat look in your country living room idea by adding sumptuous velvets, plenty of polished wood and antique lighting.
'Choosing traditional shaped living room sofa ideas, perhaps a Chesterfield style or a heavily tufted design with curved arms in rich fabrics can emulate the style of a grand country home,' says Patricia Gibbons, Designer, sofa.com. 'These tend to work particularly well in rooms with antique pieces, elaborate lighting and opulent carpets.'
'For rugs and cushions, pick tones that pair well with your larger pieces but aren’t too matchy-matchy. Keep it organic with a mix of pattern and texture to ensure the space looks lived-in and homely – a key feature of country style.'
19. Get eclectic
Country decor is synonymous with natural colours and materials. But you can add a more contemporary feel by incorporating a mix of patterns and textures to create a more eclectic look.
'To create a truly authentic countryside feel in your home, stick to a warm palette of earthy, neutral tones,' says Jacquie Dunton, Founder, Sweetpea & Willow. 'Start by throwing a warm colour on the walls and add floral patterns via sofa cushion ideas and lampshades.'
20. Look to nature for inspiration
When in doubt, look to nature for inspiration when it comes to decorating your rural abode. A mix of floral motifs and prints will instantly transport you to a meadow. While implementing some coastal living room ideas will take you to the seaside, even if you're living in the hustle and bustle of a city.
'Craftsmanship and heritage prints are celebrated in the Cottagecore trend and familiar natural motifs are favoured as we spend more time appreciating landscapes closer to home,' notes Paula Taylor, Trend Specialist, Graham & Brown.
'The aesthetic draws inspiration from natural materials and handmade elements to evoke a sense of calming simplicity, offering an escape from hectic modern life. To achieve this in the home, opt for muted neutral shades and faded pastel hues such as mint and terracotta for a soft nostalgic feel.'
21. Use wood liberally
'Beautiful, natural materials are integral to our design ethos,' says Emma Sims-Hilditch, Founder, Sims Hilditch. 'By incorporating natural wood into the structure of a room, we can play with depth, dimension and of course, complement the original features of an old property.'
'Oak is a robust and truly timeless material for making furniture, flooring and panelling, and it only gets better over time. We love walnut for its warmth and mahogany for its depth and richness.'
22. Warm up with deep blue
Contrary to popular belief, blue can warm up a scheme, rather than cool it down. It just depends on the tone you choose.
Deep, sumptuous blue living room ideas can create an inviting and soothing atmosphere, while a lighter option feels fresher and more contemporary.
23. Decorate with distressed features
Create a grown up version of shabby chic decor by mixing a variety of vintage style textures and finishes.
Think burnished metals, cracked leathers and worn stonework. When paired with chic and sleek modern pieces you'll achieve the perfect balance between antique and modern.
24. Incorporate modern pieces
'Don't buy all new furniture,' advises Emma Sims-Hilditch. 'Country style is brimming with character, so we recommend incorporating a mix of old and new furniture into your home.'
'Antique furniture sourced from a market or dealer is a great addition to country living room ideas, and creates a pleasing contrast when paired with the sharp lines of a mirror or more contemporary light fixture.'
25. Work with natural materials
Look to natural textures like rattan and reclaimed wood to add country style to your living room.
'The style focuses on rustic materials and vintage décor which allows homeowners not to be too precious about the space, making it feel calm and inviting to friends and family,' says Sally Denyer, Digital marketing Manager, Shutterly Fabulous. 'As well as this, the style is effortlessly chic!'
26. Build in a library
Make your country living room idea a place to really unwind and chill out by adding a wall of bookcases to create a mini library.
Use sections of the bookcases to showcase treasured items for a more eclectic look. Complete the relaxed reading nook by including a soft leather chair to sink into and read to your heart's content.
27. Mix old and new
Don't be afraid to buy new furniture for a cottage style space. A plush mid century modern style velvet chair can look right at home beside more rustic pieces.
28. Keep things neutral
Country style is all about neutral, natural features. It's hard not to be won over by the easy-to-live-with vibe of neutral living room ideas. Give it a Scandi spin by adding lots of throws and textures, make it industrial by adding metal details or go vintage with crochet cushions and unique ornaments.
'A neutral colour palette is best suited to rooms you spend a lot of time in, such as a living room, where relaxing tones are key to creating a happy space,' says Lisa Conway, Residential Marketing Manager, Brintons. 'Neutrals are versatile with the ability to provide a platform and set the scene.'
How can I make my living room look country?
There are lots of ways to create country living room ideas in your home. Easy ways include decorating with plenty of wood in the form of restored beams, stripped back tables and distressed shabby chic furniture and accessories.
You could restore original features like beams, cottage mantels, exposed brick and wall panelling. Mixing old and new furniture will instantly give you the relaxed, lived-in country style. While incorporating a wood burning stove or an open fire will add a warm, cosy feel to the space.
'It is a casual and inviting decorating style designed to give you the feeling of a simple country life, making both you and your guests feel right at home as soon as you walk through the door,' says Dani from Snug.
'This look isn’t just for country cottages, urban homes can breathe a feeling of nature and relaxation into their homes too. As well as a decorating scheme that reflects the outdoors, be sure to crank up the cosy factor with plenty of scatter cushions and throws on your sofa. Add in a footstool for maximum comfort and enjoy your morning cuppa while you relish in a slower pace of life – even if it’s just for a moment.'
What is modern country decor?
Modern country living room ideas is a stylish alternative to the approach. As a hugely popular interior trend right now, incorporating a mix of industrial, cottagecore, vintage, rustic and its relaxed and natural look is easy to identify.
Noemie Deed, founder of Cosy Coco says, 'Achieving a modern farmhouse aesthetic centres around the beautiful juxtaposition of the rustic and raw paired with sleek and contemporary design which creates a real sweet spot for cosy and relaxed yet refined interiors.'
'For example, integrating charming, rustic textures like shaggy rugs, exposed brick, and unrefined woods will instantly give a modern space a beautiful organic foundation which will help pave the way for creating the farmhouse style.
'These finishes really transform modern spaces, giving them a somewhat elevated homestead feel with all the cosy country vibes, and we are all about creating cosiness.'
What are country style colours?
'In terms of colours, it’s always important to pick colours that you love,' advises Emma from Kelling. 'Although most people opt for neutral, muted tones in country living room ideas, bringing in bold pops of colour can really add personality to the space.'
'If your walls are neutral, then let your furniture and accessories do the talking by introducing bolder colours such as vibrant yellow and green tones, or rich reds. For a cohesive look, pick one or two prints and use these throughout the space – maybe on curtains and scatter cushions on your sofa, whilst clashing multiple prints and patterns will add an eclectic take on the country scheme.'
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Jenny is Senior Digital Editor and joined the team in 2021, working across Ideal Home, Real Homes, Homes & Gardens, Livingetc and Gardeningetc. Since getting on the property market, her passion for interior design and gardening has taken on a new lease of life. She loves collecting and salvaging unique items (much to her other half's despair) but sniffing out stylish home bargains is her one true love. When she has a spare minute, she loves to do a spot of crafting, having studied textiles at university – although she hardly gets the chance with her daughters keeping her permanently on her toes.
- Thea Babington-StittAssistant Editor
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