A Little Bit Country...

Remember that song, She's a little bit country; He's a little bit rock-and-roll? When we think about country, we often think in terms of something a bit more simple and uncomplicated. But, there's more to country than that. Another way to say country, in terms of décor, is rustic. Rustic country décor is more rough-hewn and a lot less "frilly and pretty" than most other kinds of country decorating. Often in country style décor we see frills around gingham seat covers and crocheted tea cosies. The rustic look is unlike this type of country décor and has a simple, natural beauty all its own.

What True Rustic Decor Evokes

True rustic décor evokes nature and a time when things were all made by hand. Life was slower then and the fastest thing around was a horse at full gallop. The concept of less-is-more is definitely the way rustic décor flows and with some care and thoughtful choices, you can create a peaceful, pared-down, genuine rustic look for your space.

One of the things that evoke the feeling of "time slowed down" is the tick of a clock. If you decide a wall clock is something you would like to include in your rustic décor, try to get one with real mechanical works - that way you get to hear the clock ticking, you get to wind it, and maybe it will chime the hour. How authentic is that? However if a battery driven clock is your preference, try to find one that has a vintage feel to it.

Lower the Light

Lighting sets the mood no matter what type of décor you are using. For the rustic style, soft light in the form of hurricane lamps, kerosene lamps,and candelabras using real candles and live flame wherever possible gives the feeling of real country décor. Wall scones, candle or oil lit, chandeliers and other forms of soft light help the keep the atmosphere genuine.

Warm, Genuine Wood

Perhaps the most important element in the rustic style of décor is wood. By keeping the furniture simple, with as much wood grain showing as possible, the atmosphere is enhanced. A sturdy, solid wooden table, sanded and polished, provides the focal point in the dining room. Accompany the table with a chest of drawers, a buffet or cabinet in natural wood and you will highlight the area. Wooden chairs with cloth cushions complete the picture.

It Doesn't Have to Be Big to Have Impact

If money is an object, go for smaller items and ways to make your space rustic without high cost. Wooden bowls which are actually used as tools in your kitchen work well. Fill them with fruit, kitchen utensils, bread or salad. Wooden trays, salad servers and utensils add to the mix and wooden containers such as boxes and small chests can create atmosphere all by themselves.

Rustic wall shelves and plate racks help to pick up the slack until you can afford those pieces which will take up floor space.

Start Where You Are

There is no reason why you can't begin to make your space the rustic, peaceful haven you love to be in. Simply start where you are, adding the things you can when it is possible. Before long, you'll be living in the "cabin of your dreams"