How to Decorate Fireplaces in the French Country Style


French country décor combines rustic elements with fine antiques. It is an eclectic look that is both elegant and homey. French country is a popular decorating style and is easy to achieve, especially in a room with a fireplace. A stone fireplace provides an instant rustic vibe. However, with the right accessories, you can turn your ordinary fireplace into a French country hearth.

Things You'll Need

  • Paint
  • 2-inch flat paintbrush
  • Glazing medium
  • Raw umber tint
  • Sandpaper
  • Fireplace screen
  • Fireplace tools
  • Fireplace spit
  • Copper pots and pans
  • Gilded mirror or painting
  • Pottery from Provence
  • Antique silver objects
  • Flowerpots
  • Plants or flowers
  • Assess your existing fireplace to see how it can look more French country. Paint your wood mantle an appropriate color. Choose mustard yellow, brick red, dark cream or verdigris. Age your paint job by glazing with a mixture of glazing medium tinted with raw umber. Leave extra glaze in recesses of moldings to simulate an antique patina. Distress your mantle by sanding away some of the paint in places with sandpaper.

  • Purchase a wrought iron fireplace screen with a rustic design. Select fireplace accessories and tools in antique copper or brass. Install a spit in your fireplace if you plan to use it for traditional French country cooking. Purchase traditional copper pans and casseroles to hang near a kitchen fireplace.

  • Select an object to hang over the fireplace. Choose a mirror with an ornate gilded frame to bring an elegant touch to a rustic setting. Go with a country landscape or still-life painting as a counterbalance to an antique-filled room.

  • Choose accessories to display on your mantle shelf. Select a piece of hand-painted pottery from Provence with a floral pattern or a rooster. Place a rustic ceramic or carved wooden object next to something fancy, such as an antique silver serving tray.

  • Add potted flowers or small topiaries. Choose an iconic, fragrant Mediterranean plant like lavender or rosemary. Paint small flowerpots in French provincial colors like red, blue and yellow or use antique terracotta.

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  • Photo Credit fireplace hearth with reeds image by steven hendricks from
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