Classic French style
The epitome of relaxed chic, this style is part rustic, part je ne sais quoi. If there is one style that you can actually work your DIY magic on, this is it! Get your hands on chalk paint, start bidding on Ebay and get that armoire looking better than it did when it was in Marie Antoinette's bedroom. Oh, and if you go all the way (and why not!) a Louis upholstered corbeille bed is simply divine!
Philippe Starck for Kartell Louis Ghost Chair, John Lewis, £230
ANITA, french style armchair in Oatmeal wiith Blue stripe, SS16, Swoon Editions, £449
Avelin, french style armchair in dusk grey, SS16, Swoon Editions, £349
Hudson Living Maison Ballon Chair, in Cool Grey, John Lewis, £199
Avignon French carver chair, in dove grey, Within, £225
Brioche, dining chair in £330 for a pair, LOAF.com
If you want try your hand at vintage French style, then be prepared to take things slowly because the French don't like to stress. The style has a very homely feel to it.
Use of linen on furniture and everyday life.
The rustic looks is what it's all about. Even brand new furniture in the vintage French style are intentionally distressed to give them "vintage" look.
Cream, blues, pinks or a mix of them (try chalk-painting a chair with a layer of duck egg paint, then cover with grey paint, then distress to reveal the duck egg paint of the first layer...
Willis & Gambier Camille Low End Bedstead, Natural Linen, John Lewis, £1,150 for the king size
John Lewis Rose Bedstead (rattan corbeille) in Ivory, £1,099 for a double
Chalk Linen Upholstered Bed by Frank Hudson, Newtons Furniture, £1,190
Haybarn wardrobe, Loaf, £1095
Willis & Gambier Camille Double Wardrobe, Dark Oak, John Lewis, £1,299
Big Boy floor lamp, Loaf, £375
This style is for
Those who don't mind a look that is slightly feminine. While this is still not too polished as a look, the curvy nature of vintage French furniture may not appeal to everyone. Better check with your other half before investing in an upholstered Louis bed.
At the same time, this look is relaxed and will make you feel comfortable, at ease, at home. Think about feasts with the family, pots of lavender dressed with hessian fabric and an inviting atmosphere.
Adelin 5 Arm Chandelier, Laura Ashley
Victor, chest of drawers, mango, Swoon Editions, £369
Chateau gold leaf mirror, £369 Newtons Furniture
What to expect
Nothing will feel like new even if it is not vintage. You may feel like you're trapped in a different century especially as this style is difficult to mix with other styles.
It is however a style that can be very affordable as you can buy lovely pieces off Ebay and re-vamp them with a bit of chalk paint and a lot of elbow grease.
Weathered bedside table by Frank Hudson, £339, Newtons Furniture
Otterley vintage style chest, Loaf, £695
Will work best
If you have a cottage or country home. Not so easy to work this style in the big city. The French style furniture require space and as we all know, space is a luxury that costs by the square foot.