I think we probably all have general ideas of what the interior of any dwelling will look like based on the exterior. We imagine inside a chateau to be one thing and inside a country cottage to be another. But things aren’t always quite so black and white and a few surprises are a treat. Today I want to take you inside what would appear to be a classic low slung French cottage. I can imagine you’re already thinking, greys and neutrals and very little colour, right? Well come and have a look around with me, you might be in for a bit of a surprise!
The front door gives little clue as to what lies beyond, it’s a classic, painted in the most luxurious dark blue. But step over the threshold into the entrance hall and already there’s a hint of something a little out of the ordinary. This is the house of a French family who have always lived in the Charente Maritime, they have not travelled to far flung corners of the world, they’re as French as French can be, but they do have a love of colour and I think you will agree a sense of fun.
They’ve carefully kept the original features, the old stone walls have been left exposed along with the beams. This cottage dates from the early 1800’s. Rather than living with a maze of small poky rooms they have opened things up to make the downstairs almost open plan which gives an overall feeling of space. The salon, or sitting room, effortlessly combines antique furniture with modern accents. Vintage chairs and a chaise long happily coexist alongside a modern sofa for comfort whilst lounging watching the television or reading a book. The chairs may look fabulous but they are certainly meant for sitting up straight and being slightly formal, rather than snuggling down and being cosy!
There is an enormous central woodburning stove which heats the entire house. The grey slate surround acts as a giant oversized radiator to maximise the output. The radiators are merely a back up and never used.
The archway divides the salon and the dining room where once again vibrant colours, and contemporary touches mix with inherited pieces.
Everywhere there are accents of wallpaper, in the salon on one wall, in the dining room in the window recesses.
The kitchen is traditionally French
and I love the wall of portraits from a bygone era. It’s as if they are keeping an eye on things!
There’s a pretty little breakfast nook with an elegant chandelier and upstairs there are four bedrooms and a bathroom.
In the warmer months however, you’d be tempted to spend as much time as possible in the garden. It’s not huge but it has plenty of spaces to wander, or to sit and relax.
Old stone has been used to make sturdy outdoor coffee tables and there’s an elegant outdoor dining area where I can imagine enjoying the very freshest of produce.
Because of course there is a potager and in here there are a dozen or more chickens who cheerfully free range. In typical cottage style, there are flowers mixed in with the vegetables, the natural way of controlling pests and bugs.
This is a cottage and garden of enormous charm, it’s not what you would expect, but then as is so often the case, the unexpected is quite the best.
I hope you’ve enjoyed looking around with me. And one last surprise, because there is nothing ordinary about this home at all, this entire house has been designed by the owner’s son and he’s just 15! An interior designer in the making for sure. A little escapism from everything going on in the world. Stay safe and have a lovely end to the weekend x
34 thoughts on “Inside A French Country Cottage”
Wow! What a delightful visit this has been.
This was a vicarious trip to France!
I really needed this, since I e been wondering g if I’ll ever be able to back !
This was extraordinaire! I’m going to be using some of the ideas using rocks surrounding my lavender plants! Thank you and please post more like this!
God can certainly be praised in nature and iHis abundant gifts! !
Truly lovely and such a perfect respite for a few moments during these troubled times. Thank you for sharing!
So beautiful, just loved it. Thank you for bringing these photos to us.
Unexpected but totally charming! That boy certainly has a future in design.
Such a lovely, comfortable home. It was generous of the family to share it with us. Thank you!
This is exceptionally tasteful. I could happily move in here. Congratulations to the designer. He’s done a great job.
Thank you Susan for this rare look into a French home. Whenever we travel in different countries, all of us wonder what is behind the exterior walls of the lovely homes. It’s peeking.
Wish I would get the courage to do a wall of different paintings as the young designer did in the living room. please tell him, “ Very well done!”
The entirety gives a feeling of graciousness. . Bienvenue!
I have so enjoyed every one of your posts,but this one truly is a favorite.What a lovely,totally charming home!With all going on around us these days,it absolutely transports us to harmony and tranquility.
Much needed and much appreciated.
Thank you for sharing with us,and thank you as well to the family!
They must be very proud!!
Health,blessings,and safety to all
What a young master in interior/exterior in the making! A truly delightful and utterly charming home. It has everything I love and oozes warmth, happiness and impeccable taste. Love the mixed garden and simply EVERYTHING! Give my tks to the owners of that great place for ‘letting you in’ and thank you for sharing.
What a wonderful post! I have always been so curious about the insides of French homes since I have only seen a handful over my visits there from the US. This home was charming and huge congratulations to the son of the family for his artistic eye.
That was a treat right to the end where you say it was all designed by a 15 year old! I love it!
Did you say cottage? Interesting take. It looks so spacious. What a talented 15yr old. Some people just have a good eye😊
Oh my! Those floors, the stone walls,,,,so amazing that this is someone’s home! What a treat. More like this! I love to see how other people live…not just interiors styled for Instagram. As always, your pictures are amazing!!
I love the chandeliers – so French!
On Sun, Aug 2, 2020 at 10:51 AM Our French Oasis wrote:
> ourfrenchoasis posted: ” I think we probably all have general ideas of > what the interior of any dwelling will look like based on the exterior. We > imagine inside a chateau to be one thing and inside a country cottage to be > another. But things aren’t always quite so black and whi” >
Very beautiful and inspiring! Thank you for sharing!
Thank you for this, the cottage is charming. I love the cheekiness of the 2 pink dining room chairs!
That was a treat. It’s human nature to want to see behind closed doors. Wish you had time to write another story. What’s happening with the book?
We are safe and well in our bubble on the other side of the world, but missing being able to visit France this year.
I was hoping you would end your post with… and this lovely cottage is for sale! I could see myself living there. As always, lovely photos. Thank you. PS have you ever considered a second career as a property finder/helper for expats wanting to find a property in your beautiful part of France?
Envious of all that lovely stone.
Amazing restraint with the cottage design. This young man is very talented and must live near your family.
What a fabulous home, so inspiring!
This cottage is enchanting. I would love to visit for just a weekend. Beautiful 😊
Wow, just wow. Love it and by a 15 year old! Oh my!
Thank you for sharing this…
Thank you for this wonderful post and for an inside look into a most comfortable home. I hope that there might be more inside stories in the near future?
Wonderful photos to share a charming and comfortable home…with style! Congratulations to this young man…he has a very good eye!
What a talent that young man has…
I particularly like the repurposed windows in the potager and the little pond is so elegant.
So much fun to see interiors in France . A charming home. Thanks.
What lovely house, and the use of color is just marvelous.
Masonry stoves are the best! That one is particularly attractive.
Oh, this tour has been fun! What a beautiful home and grounds. Thank you for sharing.
Loved seeing this home and the quaint gardens. A lovely reprise from covid.