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Living in Paris is nice but you don't have to live there to create Parisian style in your own home.

We are lucky enough to be those people who can enjoy living in Paris and now we get to renovate a country home in Yorkshire but what is Parisian style?

Most people rent, property is expensive. It was so odd to me to view places and only be told the square metres, yeah but how many rooms? Space is at a premium and people want to know exactly how much space they are getting for their money. Despite renting Parisians put a stamp on their homes.

I am not going to lie to you it makes my blood boil when I see interior shows or read magazines when they tell you they are creating a Parisian home and they create something that looks like the opera house. Yes there are a lot of very opulent buildings in Paris but that is not what all the domestic homes are like, not at all. So let me guide you through creating an authentic Paris vibe for your home.

Mixing Old & New

Our apartment, like many others in the city is located in an old building. Every corner of Paris is simply dripping in history. Walking into the entryway of our building and seeing the gazed doors and the encaustic tiles on the floor it was exactly what I was expecting. So too was the tiny and noisy lift, although on the 2eme etage taking the stairs is more than doable. Just because the buildings are clearly period pieces it does not mean that only vintage looks and antique furniture are in them.

Parisians are masters of combining old and new. From all out slick kitchens to a modern sofa. Mixing and matching old pieces of furniture and new and not being a slave to an era is vital if you are going to pull off your Parisian look.

Embracing A Colonial Past

France, like many other European countries has a colonial past and whilst I am not about to go down a road of dissecting that history it is there. In Paris there is rarely a Sunday when you cannot visit a number of Brocantes or Marche des Puces. These markets are filled with bric a brac where you can find items for your home that are part of a colonial history, mostly North Africa. It is not just flea markets though there is still a strong link with many North African countries and you will find shops selling new goods from Morocco and Algeria in Paris from Tajines to Rugs.

berber style rug

Not everyone has a budget that will stretch to a Berber rug but you can find alternatives that will give you that same look such as these Berber style rugs from Luxury Flooring.

berber style Moroccan rug

Wooden Floors

I cannot think of one of my friends apartments that I have been to that did not have fab wooden floors. In a flat you would think that having carpet as a noise reducer, this certainly seems to be the case in the UK. Lets just think for a moment about the practical application. As I stated earlier most people rent so the upkeep of carpets would be nearly impossible. Wooden floors are warm underfoot and the natural texture gives a real homely feel to any space.

In the UK parquet flooring and thin floorboards are not the norm but solid wood flooring is a far cray from the early days of glossy laminate that we saw over a decade ago. The added advantage of laying engineered and solid wood flooring also adds a vital layer of insulation.

Art & Personality

I know, I know Paris is famed for art and style I am not saying anything new but until I lived in, in my opinion, the greatest city in the world, I had no idea to the extent that Parisians are dedicated to aesthetics. If you walk around any shops, even if that is just your local Monoprix you will see staff carefully arranging and preening displays. There are Artists selling works on the streets. On the first Sunday of every month entrance fees to Art galleries are wavered, art and culture is not an extra it is an integral part of society and that is reflected in Parisian homes. So if you want to instantly inject some Parisian style into your home buy some art, visit a Charity shop, buy from an independent artist but do not buy the print EVERYONE else has, that is a no no.

paris flea market

Warm Whites

Despite the fact that I adore colour and in Yorkshire deep colour is daubed on almost every wall this is not something that is seen in Paris. Obviously there will be exceptions, as there are to all rules but generally if you want to recreate a Parisian home you need to opt for warm white on the walls. A perfect backdrop for all of your other elements. I hope you have enjoyed my my guide to Parisian style.

This post has been sponsored by Luxury Flooring but all of the opinions and words are my own. As always I only work with brands that I love and would use myself.

February 24, 2019

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25 Comments

  1. Reply

    Victoria

    March 8, 2019

    I love mixing old with new, something the French do particularly well – whether that’s interiors or fashion! Those rugs are beautiful too! Timeless x

    • Reply

      Nicolette Lafonseca

      March 13, 2019

      The French are so good at this. The rugs are lovely you can just feel this squish under your feet by looking at them

  2. Reply

    rhian westbury

    March 9, 2019

    I like the idea of mixing old with new bits of interiors and homeware x

  3. Reply

    Kacie Morgan

    March 9, 2019

    I absolutely love parquet flooring. It looks so classy and sophisticated.

    • Reply

      Nicolette Lafonseca

      March 13, 2019

      It really does and when you think of the insulation it is well worth the investment

  4. Reply

    Rebecca Smith

    March 10, 2019

    I love mixing old and new in my home and I would love wooden floors in my home.

    • Reply

      Nicolette Lafonseca

      March 13, 2019

      They are so practical and timeless

  5. Reply

    Mary Midldeton | Hello Peagreen

    March 10, 2019

    I can not express how excited I am for you, it has been one of my bucket list ideas to live in Paris for a while. I lived vicariously through a friend who lived there for 18 months and visited as often as I possibly could during that time. She’s back now in Brighton and I’m glad she is back but boy do I miss visiting her in Paris. I’m still lucky enough to go 2-3 times a year. There is something about Parisian life that’s magnetising. However, the bureaucracy isn’t something I’d like to deal with!

    • Reply

      Nicolette Lafonseca

      March 13, 2019

      I am such a country bumpkin at heart but Paris is unlike any other city in the world. So easy to walk around and delights around every corner and there is something going on all the time

  6. Reply

    Catherine Cornelissen

    March 10, 2019

    I love this look! I especially think that you’re spot on with the mixture of old and new — and I actually think that this is a design aesthetic that many people try to integrate into their home, but often, it’s easier said than done! Like fashion, the Parisians ‘just know’, don’t they!

    • Reply

      Nicolette Lafonseca

      March 13, 2019

      Absolutely the Parisians are always on point, I dress so much better post Paris than I did Pre Paris

  7. Reply

    Lin Warwick

    March 10, 2019

    I love the wooden doors and definitely am all for mixing old with new. Homes are always a work progress and it’s lovely to individual choices that make it unique.

    • Reply

      Nicolette Lafonseca

      March 13, 2019

      I agree a home should evolve organically over time I love when things have a story behind them that is why a good base with floors and walls are vital to hang the rest of your design on.

  8. Reply

    Fatima

    March 10, 2019

    Flooring can have such a great impact on the way the whole room looks! I love wooden floorings.

    • Reply

      Nicolette Lafonseca

      March 13, 2019

      Agreed it is one of the biggest investments in a room it is worth making the right choice

  9. Reply

    Olivia Jade

    March 10, 2019

    I totally love the combination of old and new too. The flooring sounds great, I didn’t realise it could also add as extra insulation to your home. I like the triangular patterns it makes x

    • Reply

      Nicolette Lafonseca

      March 13, 2019

      My hubby works in energy so insulation and energy is spoken of all the time at home and then I try to make it fit with my designs. At least one of us is practical

  10. Reply

    Camilla Bellord

    March 11, 2019

    Really like the Parisian style! We particularly love the mix of old and new which can throw up such characterful contrast too.

    • Reply

      Nicolette Lafonseca

      March 13, 2019

      It is absolutely the best way to add personality to your home

  11. Reply

    Donna Ford

    March 11, 2019

    Mixing styles I think is key to any interiors style to be honest! Lovely ideas here and I’m going for chevron flooring soon in my whole downstairs!

    • Reply

      Nicolette Lafonseca

      March 13, 2019

      That wikk look so nice we are considering it in our dining room in our Yorkshire wreck

  12. Reply

    Karen

    March 13, 2019

    Love this take on Parisian design! And you’re right, I think very often we are fed this image of such opulence that it becomes so unattainable, which for me, means I switch off from it. I feel the same way about most Nordic design. After spending the past few years visiting my Norwegian family around Scandinavia I’ve found that it’s very rarely like what we see in the mags. So interesting!

    • Reply

      Nicolette Lafonseca

      March 13, 2019

      That is interesting to hear that we just do a UK version of what we think (insert here) style is. I feel a whole blog series coming on. I can assure you that not one of my Indian relatives or friends live like we portray either!

  13. Reply

    Nicola Capper

    March 16, 2019

    This year makes 10 years since my first of many trips to Paris and this post brings back so many happy memories x

  14. Reply

    Maria

    March 17, 2019

    Such a fab post and would love to experience the Parisian way of life! Always mix new with old as it’s a fantastic way of adding the unique, personality and character to your home. Those parquet floors are stunning by the way. x

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