Country decorating has long been one of the most popular home decorating styles. In the past this has included such elements of the style as handmade items, collections, and rustic charm. While country style will always epitomize home and warmth, its time to bring country design into the modern era. We call this decorating style “Clean Country”, and heres how to get it.

​Clean it up

Country decorating has been often accused of being “cluttered”. Clean country decorating is anything but! So it’s time to seriously edit and pack away all those little things that don’t contribute to the overall design scheme. Don’t go overboard though, country is about home and family, so you don’t want to eliminate everything that’s personal. Create a box of decorative items to store, and rotate favorite accents with the seasons.



Choose a “clean” color scheme

Update your country decorating look with a more modern color scheme. Pick one color, then try combining it with white or neutrals for a stylish look that isn’t dated, and doesn’t cause confusion for the eye. Add textures to give the room great interest and contrast. Keep patterns to a minimum, and try to incorporate some of the new geometrics or a modern floral that uses white and one color in its design.


Choose your inspiration

Choosing your inspiration for the clean country decorating look is kind of like choosing a theme. But instead of the cutesy country themes of the past, you are choosing an inspiration that creates a feeling. Gone are the roosters and in is a room inspired by the mountains in Colorado, or the high country of Santa Fe. You can actually picture the “feeling” of the room just by those descriptive words, and that’s what will give you guidance and keep you on track.



Light the way

One of the fastest ways to update an outdated decorating shame is to add a modern lighting fixture. This works great with the “Clean Country” as they compliment each other well. Think West Elm.

Family room decorating

Develop key elements

When you create focal points in your room, keep your inspiration in mind. You are telling a story about your inspiration, so stick to the main idea, but add some interesting characters.

Also, choose your fabrics and furniture pieces in the room in the same way. If your story is the southwest, a glazed feminine calico fabric, even if it is in the right colors won’t give you a clean design. Simple and to the point is better.



Accessorize, don’t antagonize

The “more is more” country decorating look of the past is just that…it’s in the past. Choose a few great pieces to display at a time. Mix and match with other styles, offering interest and contrast, and bringing more attention to your beloved possessions. If you have a collection, or want to showcase Grandmas quilt, then showcase it. But display it gallery style and give each piece importance. Don’t just use something for the sake of having something fill a space. Treat the things you love like art.

Look for inexpensive antiques that can be used to create a unique wall collection such as postcards or antique flatware. Add items from nature, but be selective. Leave some space around your treasures for the eye to rest.



Above all, relax and enjoy the creative process. There are no rules in decorating that can’t be broken. Clean Country Decorating is a fantastic way to take a beloved home decorating style of the past, and give it a modern twist.

Image Credits: Marchi Group, House to Home, Pottery Barn, Pottery Barn

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