Karen Skiver patiently peeled off old Victorian wallpaper until she had a blank slate for her more primitive decorating style in the Greenville, Ohio, house she and her husband, Neil, have renovated. Once that hard work was complete, she re-papered walls in prim colors and patterns throughout the house—including her mudroom. “Wallpaper covers a lot,” she says. “It can really dress up your home.” She offers the following key points to consider when deciding between wallpaper and paint:
Hay rakes, tractors, plows and wagons are among the antique farm equipment prized by collectors today. The designs are synonymous with American ingenuity, and their iconography recalls simpler times. Country homeowners can distinguish their properties with gardens that focus on agrarian implements purchased at auction or online. Alicia Hissom, who lives in New Martinsville, West Virginia, acquired her hay rake from a neighbor. She later discovered that the cherished relic originally belonged to her husband’s grandfather. Here are her tips for incorporating farm equipment into a flower bed:
Sue and E.J. Mirambell, who live in Covington, Louisiana, planned their new kitchen to be fully functional for today yet look period appropriate for the New England style they favor. Follow their tips to complete a similar project.
Joy Campbell, who lives in South Dartmouth, Massachusetts, isn’t one for pigeonholing her style or for following decorating rules. “I’ve never been one to go with the flow or follow what’s in,” she remarks. Instead, she believes her living room should reflect the people who live in it. She recommends the following tips for crafting a home filled with unexpected (and individualized) appeal:
Achieving a seamless connection between old and new living spaces can be challenging. When Uniontown, Pennsylvania, couple Toni and Jim Anthony built their master bedroom addition a few years ago, they let history be their muse. Take note of their style cues to create a relaxing retreat with an eye on the past.
Cindy Mack Taggart's favorite room is the heart of her Abilene, Kansas, home. When she started renovations, she was tempted to gut the space and start from scratch. "The appliances were not usable, and the layout of the kitchen did not flow well," she says. Ultimately, she opted to rework the floor plan. "I was able to put my unique country-style stamp on it so it would look like a working American country kitchen," she adds. Here's how you can create the kitchen of your dreams:
Kimberly Smith-Johnson, a Quakertown, Pennsylvania, resident and owner of a home decorating business, says, "I like to put a modern twist on country style. I like to mix primitive and country." Her dining room embodies this philosophy and features bold colors, traditional furniture and unique displays. To transform your dining room into a prim entertaining space, consider Kimberly’s five decorating tips:
To create a peaceful space in your country abode, let Jeff VanVoorhis and Susan Fox be your guides. The pair rank the living room as one of their favorite places to while away the hours. Here are a few of their ideas on putting together a primitive room that evokes a sense of calm:
Do you daydream about buying and restoring an antique home? As romantic as this notion may sound, lovers of old houses often follow a different path and build a new home that recalls yesteryear but incorporates elements needed for today’s lifestyle. Teri Klinker advocates this old house, new balancing act and says, "Period homes never go out of style." Reflecting on her own experience with designing and building a home with an eye on the past, Teri offers these helpful tips:
Linda and Trevor Meachen's mobile home proves that you don't need a lot of space or high ceilings to use signs to make a strong style statement. With a wide selection of fonts, colors and shapes, the possibilities are endless. "If I like what it says, I'll buy it," Linda explains of her penchant for phrases. She shares several ways to incorporate vintage and vintage-style signage into your own space.