Decorating With Toile de Jouy,  Part 2:
Living Room, Kitchen, Dining Room, Home Office

Decorating with toile de Jouy  fabric adds a touch of luxury to French interiors, no matter whether it's a work space or a relaxing haven.

Living-Room Comfort & Elegance

sofa with toile cushions, France

Decorating with toile works for both elegant and rustic country French living rooms. You don't need a lot of toile:

  • Use it for accents, e.g. throws, cushions, and accessories.
  • Slipcovering with toile de Jouy can look great, too (and makes particular sense if your living-room sees a lot of wear).

Here are some toile  ideas for French country living rooms:

1. 'Shabby chic':

  • Cover the floor with rush matting;
  • Slipcover all seating in light neutrals or white,
  • Add light-colored toile (baby blue, pink, or pale green) and a lot of white lace to the mix.

2. For a more subdued & natural look ...

  • Combine wicker seating or straw-seated chairs with comfortable leather furniture in natural browns;
  • Then add blue-patterned toile and other blue-and-white fabrics.
  • In addition to toile, use things like simple white porcelain on a mantel or a shelf. Looks great against solid-color walls in pastels or deep, dramatic hues.

3. Elegant French country:

  • Hang full-length, lined toile drapes at the windows.
  • Some antique French (or painted 'country' furniture would not go amiss here, and it looks even better if you ...
  • Show it off on parquet flooring (or tomettes from Provence).

Decorating With Toile: Country French Kitchens

toile de jouy in a French-style kitchen

Rustic French kitchens in old French farmhouses might use Toile de Jouy for curtains - either at the window, or to hide storage space under the worktop.

However, it's less common than you'd think. Toile is a 'fancy' fabric, after all, and a rustic French space needs simple fabrics that complement the overall look. However, here are ...

... some ideas for decorating with toile in your kitchen:

Caution: only ever use up to 3 items from this list.

  • toile tea towels, or toile borders on plain/striped tea towels,
  • toile placemats,
  • toile napkins,
  • toile chair pads,
  • toile-lined baskets,
  • toile patches over marmalade glasses,
  • toile bags for recycled materials,
  • oven gloves with a toile pattern,
  • a toile apron for the cook.

Combine these toile items with other simple patterns or solids to add just a little French touch to your kitchen. This will look particularly good if you stick to a strictly limited color scheme, like the blue-and-white in the picture above.

Just one more thing, on a practical note: If you're going to use an antique/vintage French fabric for your kitchen curtains (or anything else that will get a lot of wear and tear), give it a new, sturdy backing. Your antique textile will thank you by living - and looking good - for a lot longer.

Decorating With Toile: Chic French Country Dining Rooms

A few toile accessories look good in most French country dining rooms. However ...

... what's good for French kitchens is also valid for French dining rooms:

Always use toile de Jouy in moderation!

A few ideas for a touch of toile de Jouy  in dining rooms:

  • toile tablecloth
  • toile napkins
  • toile placemats
  • dining chairs slipcovered in toile
  • toile chair pads
  • toile curtains at the windows, or
  • toile wallpaper (or toile wallpaper borders).

You'll also create an authentic French look with one of these combinations:

  • Dining chairs with slipcovered backs in antique white or unbleached linen, plus toile chair pads and crisp, antique white curtains with a straight, simple toile valance (here are some examples of the look)

Decorating With Toile In Your Home Office

  • Turn any old desktop into a "country French" writing desk: Cut a length of toile de Jouy fabric (or toile wallpaper) to the exact measurements of your desktop, and have a rectangle of (beveled) glass cut to the same measurements. Then sandwich the toile between the desktop and the glass. Instant chic!
  • Stack wooden vintage crates as bookshelves along a wall, and line or paper them inside with toile.
  • Cover or line containers for mail, pens, brushes etc. with toile. (They could be empty tin cans, wooden boxes, even small or large sturdy cartons.)
  • Cover a rectangle of styrofoam with toile to create a pin board.
  • Color-photocopy a strip of your favorite toile de Jouy design as a 'letterhead' onto your private stationery.
  • Last not least, you could always add a toile chair pad to your office chair.
  • Decorating with toile can be done on a shoestring with bargain toile fabrics. And what better place to find a bargain than eBay?  Let's say you want to line a wooden crate, cover a pin board or make my toile cushion cover designs in Part 3 from a smallish piece of vintage toile - chances are you'll get a pretty good deal right here below!

arrow to previous page

arrow to next page

Yet to find the information you're looking for? Type a word or phrase into the search box below:

Add This Site:

Related Pages:

Subscribe here:




I keep this private.