Thursday, August 25, 2011

Country Living

I was shabby before it was chic. Not really, but I thought it sounded good. I have always been a little bit country. I was selling painted and faux-aged pie safes, cherry corner cupboards and bootjack benches at shows around the southeast in the eighties when Country Living was the best selling home decor magazine on the stand. Do you remember the first widely distributed American magazine to show country furniture and lifestyle? It was Early American Life. The paper was quality and photos minimal, but I loved those pages.

I was a pushover when Country Living came along in 1978. I looked forward to its arrival monthly and my husband would point out to me if a photo included some decorating idea that I had used. It happened often. My romance faded as the pages became more and more filled with fifties enamelware and massive collections of tin nailed to walls and hanging from ceilings. The scenes became jumbled and messy. I wanted to go back to days of one handsome container of bittersweet on a well scrubbed pine or maple farm table with a Dutch Colonial chair as master.

Ah, bittersweet. We country folk adore it for fall decorating. It grows in my area but there was a movement afoot a while ago to stamp it out. I think bittersweet may be winning. I hope so. If I am lucky enough to go bittersweet hunting this fall, maybe I will drop a few berries along the way as I bring it home. I saved the photo above for the shades while working with a client to show the shades hung inside the window frame. It's clean! I came across it just this morning and thought how much I loved the clean country gentlemanly air. Decorators take great care to hide electrical cords but they show in this room. I like the honesty. Did you notice the walls are grey?


  1. Great post. I agree with every word...except those cords...Sorry they bother me. Ha! Love those gray walls with the rich wood beds and the woven wood blinds.

  2. I've had a career long debate with myself about cords. Because the room has such a wonderfully casual air I decided it was OK. Thanks, Mona.


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