10 new country decorating ideas

These new country decorating ideas will bring timeless charm to a period home by mirroring the natural materials, rustic patinas and mellow hues of rural Britain

New country decorating ideas: orange country kitchen
(Image credit: Future)

New country decorating ideas are ideal if you are looking to create fresh yet timeless country style interior. Whether you want to update a single room, the entire house, or simply liven up a space with some new soft furnishings, we've rounded up 10 ideas for getting a relaxed rural look, including new fabric, wallpaper and paint collections from our favourite brands.

See all our design features on our hub page. For more inspiration on decorating a period home check out our round up of the top 50 brands for decorating, renovating and furnishing a period home from across Britain.

1. Refresh the room by painting kitchen cabinetry

Shaker-style cabinetry is guaranteed to give a classic country look. Handmade from real wood it will stand the test of time and can easily be rejuvenated with a lick of paint. Why not give yours a modern twist with cheery contrasting colours? Little Greene offers a range of Intelligent paint finishes including eggshell, which is perfect for cabinets and even tiles. Water based, it is eco-friendly, long-lasting, and washable. We love this mix of Woad on base cabinets with Sunlight above, from £31 for 1ltr.

Find more Shaker kitchens inspiration in our gallery, and find out how to paint kitchen cabinets in our guide.

Little Greene kitchen

(Image credit: Little Greene)

2. Create a timeless dining room with a repeat wallpaper

A soothing repeat design inspired by garden trellises, Vanessa Arbuthnott’s Fruit Garden Detail wall covering, from the Orchard collection, brings a balancing dose of pattern to a colour-blocked kitchen-diner. Shown in Pigeon/Powder Blue/Straw, £56 per roll. To bring the country feel up to date, pair industrial-style café chairs
with a classic farmhouse table, and mix and match napkin and tablecloth fabrics,
all from £52 per m. See more kitchen wallpaper design ideas in our inspiring gallery.

country dining room wallpaper

(Image credit: Vanessa Arbuthnott)

3. Embrace the colours of nature 

Bound with nature, this new Olive Chalk paint from Annie Sloan brings a rustic, country feel to a period home, but with a moody twist. ‘It sits so beautifully with classic fabrics like a fine ticking, and textured plains like linens,’ says Annie. Paint from £5.95 for 120ml. See more kitchen paint colour scheme ideas in our gallery.

Annie Sloan Olive Green kitchen

(Image credit: Annie Sloan)

4. Complement period features with rustic woven fabrics

British weaver of designer fabrics Ian Mankin has teamed up with heritage charity The Landmark Trust to launch 1485, a collection inspired by historic properties from 1485 to 1603 in the charity’s care. From the Herringbone weave (on sofa in Blue and Russet) to Peake’s Check (in Parchment on ottoman), all the designs stem from decorative surfaces or architectural motifs seen at properties across the UK. Available from £39.50 per m, they are made from natural fibres and woven at Ian Mankin’s Lancashire weaving mill. Read more about choosing upholstery in our expert guide.

‘These fabrics have a lived-in feel. The linen and soft palette sit comfortably with aged terracotta floors, weathered wood and faded painted surfaces, making mixing old with new effortless’

Debbie Fish at Ian Mankin

country living room ian mankin

(Image credit: Ian Mankin)

5. Mix and match folksy fabrics

Create a unique, homely and lived-in look by choosing soft furnishing and cushions in an array of colourful fabrics with abstract, folsky motifs, along with traditional wovens such as Welsh blankets. For a modern twist why not add into the mix a re-upholstered Mid-century chair?

Fabric designer Vanessa Arbuthnott's beautiful Cotswold home (below) teams co-ordinating prints from her own country collections. Be inspired by bags more traditional living rooms in our design gallery.

vanessa country living room

(Image credit: Brent Darby)

6. Chose a hallway wallpaper with rural scenes

Linking spaces like hallways can easily get overlooked when it comes to decorating. Try livening them up with feature wallpapers inspired by idyllic landscapes. New from Scandinavian wallpaper brand Boråstapeter, this Archipelago design depicts traditional Swedish coastal properties. £59 per roll at Wallpaper Direct. See more pretty hallway wallpaper ideas in our guide.

hallway country wallpaper

(Image credit: Borastapeter)

7. Choose soothing greens tones

Blueish green shades are a perfect complement to the warm, earthy tones of the weathered timber and stone in period country homes. Try using Pleat from Little Greene to bring an uplifting feel to practical spaces such as boot rooms. From £31 for 1ltr of Intelligent eggshell. See more green room ideas to inspire your scheme.

Little Greene Bootroom

(Image credit: Little Greene)

8. Mix and match bespoke and vintage storage solutions 

Built-in cupboards are a great way to introduce storage into the irregular-shaped rooms of old country cottages. Balance the clean surfaces with the rustic textures of vintage wooden furniture and salvaged pieces. Find bespoke cabinetry and antiques at Devol. See all our storage features, buys and advice pieces on our hub page.

Devol vintage kitchen storage

(Image credit: Devol)

9. Opt for fabrics in classic country checks 

Nothing says country style like a cosy armchair covered in wool plaid. One of six checked wools launched in a new collaboration between woollen mill Moon and the National Trust, Mr Straw’s House in Aqua/Natural looks timeless here teamed with duck egg walls. Woven in Britain, the fabrics cost from £65.95 per m.

Bronte check fabrics country living room

(Image credit: Bronte)

10. Decorate with Arts & Crafts prints 

Embrace the beauty of nature in a bedroom with a statement fabric wall hanging brimming with floral motifs. Inspired by May Morris’ Arts & Crafts embroideries,
this new Wilhelmina Weave linen features scrolling acanthus leaves, honeysuckle and clematis, £119 per m at Morris & Co. For a contemporary edge, team with Sanderson’s dramatic Graphite paint, £45 per 2.5ltrs of Active matt emulsion. 

For more inspiration check out these 13 Arts & Crafts decorating ideas.

Morris & Co fabric arts and crafts

(Image credit: Morris & Co)

Period Living October 2019 cover

(Image credit: Period Living)

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More ideas for decorating a country home

Pippa is Style Editor for Period Living magazine and spends many a weekend exploring the Cotswolds for decorating shoot ideas. A collector at heart, she is currently looking for a vintage cabinet to store her favourite wares.