How to Create a French Country Kitchen

Aug 2, 2013 | Half Way Farm, Parisienne Farmhouse Design, The Parisienne Farmhouse | 52 comments

2015 Update: So much has happened since I wrote this post. We’ve totally settled into life on the farm, gotten rid of the ugly countertops and made some incredible French-inspired finds for our French Country Kitchen. I even wrote a cookbook in this kitchen!   WOW!  We’ve come a long way baby~~~~
I think it may be time for an update… but here is how it all began…
La Cuisine… A la Ferme a Mi-Chemin
How to Create a French Country Kitchen?
Here’s how I did it…
 My French Country Kitchen || Parisienne Farmgirl
view from a chandelier into kitchen
 STILL PREGNANT.
Last one was 11 days early – so a girl can hope, can’t she???
 How was I going to turn this 70s nightmare into a French Country Kitchen? Oh… I had a plan.
BEFORE (lest we forget).
  vacant kitchen with baby scooting around
The entrance from the kitchen into the living room. After we removed the Rainbow Brite carpeting.
Yes, we are renting, but our landlord gave us carte blanche to fix up the house the way we saw fit. He gives us a tiny discount each month as a “thank you.” Not enough for the thousands of dollars worth of labor we did for six weeks before we moved in. But we are so blessed to have found a rental that didn’t look like a Home Depot Special (read: Berber carpet and oak bathroom vanities). Something that we could really make feel like home.  I would rather move into a DIVE than something tricked out with shiny brass light fixtures – you know what I mean???
kitchen sink with wine and open windows
 Taken my first night on the farm. It was just me and JuJu that first night and a great bottle of wine. So we painted over the wallpaper (normally my perfectionist painter husband would NEVER do such a thing! He would removed it, sand the walls, seal them… ugh..) We also removed that horrible 1970s scallop thingy over the RED sink… yet to be removed. I am just waiting to find some old sink at a barn sale. The windows that swing out to the porch are the coolest thing in the entire house!!!
view of a messy kitchen with dark cabinets
 Also having had to go bye, bye – the Jenny Lind railing thing. We replaced it with a nice deep shelf for my oil paintings, copper and roasters. Half of it yet to be painted if you look closely in photos.
kitchen with dark cabinets and kitchen island
 Yikes.
dark open windows open over red sink filled with dishes
messy kitchen with grey cabinets
Moving Day.
OK – Here we go. You said you were “tired” of garden, goat and chicken photos (I’m not offended). But it just takes a lot of work to get a room ready for pictures. I didn’t do the best job I could, I just don’t have the energy for a full blown photo shoot but they are OK and I gathered some from the last 8 months too.
 
 
Half-Way Farm logo
la Cuisine label with rooster and chicken
French Country Kitchen
 Landlord Lewis (as we call him) let us take out the black stove and put in my baby! He obviously let us paint those horrible cabinets too. The technique is blue/gray barnwood. I took off the heavy 1970s hardware with the intention of just dealing with it and putting it back up but when I did it totally distracted from my cool paint job. I will NOT be spending money on hardware. For now, there are holes everywhere. Maybe this winter when I have time I will run some twine through or something.
vase with tulips over stove with kitchen accoutrements
 I really love my old lipped cutting board and I love using my stove for display – especially since this house has less than half the counter space I used to have.
vase with broccoli flowers and chard leaves
 Working with what you have. Broccoli flowers and rainbow chard.
French Country Kitchen view of windows and fabric covering sink
 I am trying to be really laid back here – as we ATTEMPT to save for our big farm someday. There are so many things that could be done to make the house and property fabulous. But I am really just trying to get it livable and know that it’s not going to be “my masterpiece” – I am thankful for everything we have… except that god-awful red sink, which to every one’s chagrin I have inconveniently disguised with a HEAVY slab of marble and a cool old light blue bowl. LOVE IT!!!
bowl and marble slab on counter in a country kitchen
view of cookbooks and cake stand on a kitchen counter
 Just playing around on PicMonkey. A tin table top helps disguise the horrid shiny wood laminate countertops and displays some of my kitchen FAV’S including my Beurre dish from Clingencourt, a to die for bottle of Moulin Saint George and my patisserie cake dome and platter from Susan and Romancing the Home
 
Garage sales, resale shops and world market.  
I LOVE COPPER.
lavender sprigs in bowls on table with plates and lace
 This winter I will be making flower pepper for gifts but I wanted to enjoy my harvest for a couple days first before drying. The salt and pepper shakers are milk glass and from my Gramma. They warm my heart every time I see them.

So these next few are really recent. Like the other day. Notice I moved the marble slab – that wouldn’t be fair to whoever has to wash my dishes while I am upstairs with a hew baby… and my Pullman car towel is crooked, but hey, you wouldn’t want me up on a stool in my “condition” would you??? And – too lazy remove the food encrusted toddler seat, move extension cords and to hop over to PicMonkey for the P.F. stamp. Sigh.

wide view of French Country Kitchen
vintage cooking gear on a shelf with vintage Pullman Company shawl
view of long kitchen counter with cloth door
kitchen sink near window with two small trees
kitchen sink with two small trees and shawl hanging from shelf
The stove area a few months back. That fabulous tapestry next to the SEL canister was sent to me by the lovely Brenda Hodges – she bought a frame she liked at a tag sale and found it underneath and thought of me. I just love it. It’s ratty, French and fabulous.
table display of wine and snacks and Christmas decorations
 Mom had this old workbench left after one of our Shop the Shed sales (and I say “our” loosely, as she has the BEST STUFF ever!). I wanted it so bad. It didn’t sell, didn’t sell and didn’t sell as the months went by. She gave it to me for my birthday last year. LOVE IT! I use it as a buffet when entertaining as seen here at Christmas and for the kids’ are supplies (underneath the curtains) and my dishes.
French Country Kitchen | Parisienne Farmgirl
copper wine bottle holder with oil and vinegar bottles
 We go thru olive oil and balsamic in a freakish way around here. They are always within easy reach and easy pour on my stovetop.
How To Make A French Country Kitchen | Parisienne Farmgirl
 Our dining room table from the old house fits PERFECTLY in our kitchen and let me tell you, I don’t miss running back and forth. I’ve never had an eat in kitchen until this house.
homemade bread wrapped in a doily
 Homebread. 
 (Someone asked me about this recently – my navigation bar is hidden on this blog but if you scroll your mouse up at the top you can search for anything from the last 8 years… including this recipe).
chard leaves in a white basket
 Coming out my nose. Rev up the juicer!
 
row of books and kitchen accessories on a shelfIf there is one thing I would like to have more of, it’s little old oil paintings. I scored this one last year for $45!!!!!!! It felt like highway robbery… finally, in my favor!
Another view of the cabs. What I removed before I took “before” photos was that those upper cabs had YELLOW wavy glass behind the wire. Freaky.
How to Create a French Country Kitchen
And of course, the copper pots. You have to have those for a French Inspired Kitchen. Found in Paris, garage sales and resale shops.
Never have enough.
I know it’s not the most “pin-tastique” post – but you understand, right?
Which room would you like to see next?
The bedroom is all ready for the home birth – thinking about making a quick video tour for those who can’t fathom how you can have a home birth. Hmmmm…..
How to Create a French Country Kitchen

52 Comments

  1. Christi

    Lovely! Thanks for sharing – and or the record, I NEVER get tired of potager pics (though I love seeing the house too)! xo

    Reply
  2. Elma

    Just awesome!! You sure have made the home soooo cozy!! I would love to see more of the garden and the chickens and what about the kids rooms??? Thanks for sharing.

    Reply
  3. miss.suzette2

    Thank you for opening the window into your lovely home. I must tell you discovering your blog has been a treat for me. I enjoy your humor and honesty. Your love for God, life and family shines through with each picture and word. You are an inspiration to your fellow woman… me. Thanks again and try to rest just a bit before baby 🙂

    Reply
  4. miss.suzette2

    Thank you for opening the window into your lovely home. I must tell you discovering your blog has been a treat for me. I enjoy your humor and honesty. Your love for God, life and family shines through with each picture and word. You are an inspiration to your fellow woman… me. Thanks again and try to rest just a bit before baby 🙂

    Reply
  5. miss.suzette2

    Thank you for opening the window into your lovely home. I must tell you that discovering your blog has been a real treat for me. I enjoy your humor, insight and honesty. Your love of God, life and your family shines through with each word and picture. You are an inspiration to your fellow woman…me 🙂 Thanks again and best wishes to you and yours.

    Reply
  6. vintage girl at heart

    love it all even the red sink looks charming with all of your lovely work! you inspire me!

    Reply
  7. Old Centennial Farmhouse

    You have done SO MUCH, and I actually think the red sink works! It will become the new Parisienne Farmgirl look! Girl, you are such a ball of energy! And I love all the things you did, but most eye-catching that you may not have mentioned was the way you stained the glass in those overhead lights. BEAUTIFUL!! All of it is just wonderful, and just YOU. I am so glad to see this, and I’d like to see the kids rooms next. Love you and I miss you, too. I need to come down that way this fall!

    Reply
  8. Brenda Hodges

    Feeling honored that the tapestry I sent has a special place in your home! Now, go have a baby…

    Reply
  9. Mandy

    it’s gorgeous! we want land so badly we actually just walked in from a drive to look at some properties. unfortunately the one 6 acre lot we looked at with great farmland had a house that had no foundation and stank of cat urine so bad you couldn’t get within 10 ft. ugh. our prices here are way too stinkin high for what I want. and I’m not even that picky! Dying to see the rest of it when you get a chance! maybe the lving room would be easiest?! Blessings for baby.

    Reply
  10. Noël McNeil

    LOVE IT!!! I would love to see your bedroom and your baby prep, but anything would be awesome. I keep hoping to see a ‘I’m in labor’ post….. 🙂

    Reply
  11. cheapdiva

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! Have been waiting for inside shots!

    Reply
  12. Nancy

    You’ve done a great job making your rental very frenchy and farmhousey. Also comfy and welcoming. I like it. Hope you give birth soon! 🙂 And kudos for all you’ve done while pregnant. I remember how tired I was the whole time. There wasn’t much “nesting” going on. Way too tired for that.
    Je m’appelle Nadine (the extent of what I remember from French in HS)

    Reply
  13. WhiteWhispers2u

    I think for what you had to work with you did an amazing transformation.

    I think it looks like an old French Country Kitchen which I adore!

    I had a lot of copper not sure where I put it at the moment but I sure could send it your way!

    Your Mom does have some fabulous goods wish I could shop her shed for sure!

    Thanks for sharing 🙂

    Many Blessings! Kim

    Reply
  14. WhiteWhispers2u

    I think for what you had to work with you did an amazing transformation.

    I think it looks like an old French Country Kitchen which I adore!

    I had a lot of copper not sure where I put it at the moment but I sure could send it your way!

    Your Mom does have some fabulous goods wish I could shop her shed for sure!

    Thanks for sharing 🙂

    Many Blessings! Kim

    Reply
  15. Ggomez

    You have vision girl!
    You must have more energy in your little finger then I have in my whole body! And your 9 months preggers! Ouch I feel lazy!
    Beautiful and very frenchy!

    Reply
  16. Ewa

    Haven’t been here for a long time… so many changes… looks great.
    Will be coming back more often.

    Reply
  17. shirlgirl

    Thank you thank you thank you for the new update and photo’s. It is so fun to see where you are now in your redo and decorating. I am loving it.

    Reply
  18. Lisa Wagner

    It looks amazing – I’m in awe that you accomplished all that…and put in a huge garden…all while being pregnant.

    Now sit down and put your feet up, for crying out loud!!

    Reply
  19. Lisa Wagner

    It looks amazing – I’m in awe that you accomplished all that…and put in a huge garden…all while being pregnant.

    Now sit down and put your feet up, for crying out loud!!

    Reply
  20. Lisa Wagner

    It looks amazing – I’m in awe that you accomplished all that…and put in a huge garden…all while being pregnant.

    Now sit down and put your feet up, for crying out loud!!

    Reply
  21. April

    I love the way you took a 70’s something kitchen and made it so you. I am enjoying a great cup of coffee in a beautiful coffee cup and pretending that I and in someone kitchen in Paris!!!Your kitchen is eye candy! Thanks for sharing, April

    Reply
  22. April

    I love the way you took a 70’s something kitchen and made it so you. I am enjoying a great cup of coffee in a beautiful coffee cup and pretending that I and in someone kitchen in Paris!!!Your kitchen is eye candy! Thanks for sharing, April

    Reply
  23. Chanda

    Thank you for the tour, it is so awesome just as I expected, you have great taste and do what you want, that is great. Nothing like making it “yours”. A home should be that way. sometimes I hate HGTV they bend peoples minds so badly in the décor and home world. Love the cabs and what you did with them, Landlord Lewis is so cool!!

    Reply
  24. Kari

    First of all I’m amazed by your energy. And then your creativity. It’s such a treat to see inside your house and see the environment you created for your family. It’s so creative so cool I just love it. Would love to see everything of course, but maybe the kids rooms and living room? I’m sure you are rockin the Paris flea market look in the girls room(s) and I can’t wait to be inspired. Best wishes for your new baby!

    Reply
  25. Kari

    First of all, I am amazed by your energy. And your creativity. It’s so cool to get a glimpse inside your home and see what you’ve created for your family. I love it! Can’t wait to see everything, but maybe the kids rooms first? I’m sure you’re rockin the Paris flea market look in your girls room(s) and I can’t wait to see! I’m sure the whole house is fabulous even if its not your dream farm… Your style is so amazing it will look great no matter what. Best wishes for you and the new baby!

    Reply
  26. Joy

    I imagine you are looking for an old farm house deep sink… we just took out a 1950’s vintage double bowl cast iron sink with drain boards left and right… can’t sell that puppy… someone is coming to take it away. Your kitchen looks great! You’ve done a fantastic job with what you have.

    Reply
  27. goldengirls

    Love what you did to your kitchen! You made use of every available space in such a chic way! Wish I could duplicate in my house, but I’d have to start all over again!

    Reply
  28. Carmen

    Such warm and enchanting images. I especially like the buffet in white. Lovely ~
    Carmen

    Reply
  29. Katie

    Oh please post about home birth!!! Just decided I WILL have my third at home!! Can’t take the fluorescent lights, cold nurses, and sterile hospital anymore!!

    Reply
  30. Katie

    Please post about home birth!!!!!

    Reply
  31. stellarstamper

    WOW!!!!! You did a fabulous job transforming your kitchen! I love it! I have to say that I thoroughly enjoy reading your blog and seeing everything you do! Your family is just beautiful and your farm is fantastic! I know you’re getting ready to bring another beautiful blessing into the world and I wish you a quick and easy birth!!!

    Reply
  32. stellarstamper

    WOW!!!!! You did a fabulous job transforming your kitchen! I love it! I have to say that I thoroughly enjoy reading your blog and seeing everything you do! Your family is just beautiful and your farm is fantastic! I know you’re getting ready to bring another beautiful blessing into the world and I wish you a quick and easy birth!!!
    God Bless!

    Reply
  33. Stephanie

    I love every single last detail!

    Reply
  34. Dewena Callis

    You are amazing and what a transformation of the kitchen! I still look at your old kitchen in the Prairie Style book and wondered what this one would look like. It is charming. Landlord Lewis should get down on his knees and thank the Lord for the day you all drove up the driveway.

    As to the next room? I keep the Victorian magazine out in my bedroom and often look at your beautiful bedroom in it so I would love to see how you’ve adapted everything to this house that is just a way station on to the farm of your dreams. My compliments though for stamping this home for your family with a style all your own.

    Reply
  35. Sopa Azul

    Congratulations Angela, excellent work. It is an amazing kitchen. Amicalement 😀

    Reply
  36. Kathleen

    Now that’s a kitchen that feels SO warm and charming. I like the red sink! The faucet needs to go but I love dashes of red in French inspired spaces. I agree, Landlord Lewis hit jackpot when you moved in!

    Reply
  37. Kathleen

    Haha I just read your leave comment statement. I never noticed it before. Now that’s priceless.

    Reply
  38. Sheila

    J’adore votre cuisine! It is warm and welcoming. I can appreciate not wanting the Berber and brass. That is not for me, either. I love my 1926 cottage. Tiny kitchen and all!

    Reply
  39. Carmen Suzanne

    lovely what you’ve done, what an inspiration. been loving the farmy/health blog posts recently but loooove that you mixed it up with some interior design again… we want more! we want more! haha. also if that were me living with that brown laminate counter I would SOOOO be taking a paintbrush or some cheap white bathroom tile to it… that shade of brown is like the color from hell haha.

    oh yeah and please post about home birth!!!! love you Angela

    Reply
  40. Carmen Suzanne

    beautiful what you’ve done! I’ve been loving the farmy/health and wellness posts a lot (like a lot!!) BUT, its so nice that you mixed it up with some interior design for those of us that live for our ‘visual treats’. by the way, in my opinion its a totally ‘pin-worthy post’ lol, im on it 🙂

    just wanted to say, if that were me living with that awful brown laminate counter I would SOOO be taking a paintbrush to it or some cheap white bathroom tile or something. im sure there’s something you could do, that shade of brown is like the color from hell, and combined with the laminate plastic texture, get outta town lol. love how you make every effort to disguise it though!!

    oh yeah, please pretty please post about home birth, thanks!!

    Reply
  41. Jamie Langham

    love your kitchen! don’t throw away that red sink…. the gardner farm will take it!!!

    Reply
  42. Lynnette Taylor

    I found your blog listed recently on my friend Cary Smith’s blog. Serenity Farms in Michigan. I am in love with your blog! I especially love that God is listed in your loves. Keep up the pictures and words!

    Reply
  43. Nancy @ Little Homestead in Boise

    Great job! Just curious, in the book Romantic Prairie Style your cabinets/counter/sink were all white, with lemon yellow walls. Was that later or just for the styling shoot? Both look great!!!

    Reply
    • Parisienne Farmgirl

      Nancy — that kitchen you are seeing in the book is our old home… the origianl Parisienne Farmhouse. We are now renting a farm (to learn as we go) as we save money for our “big farm” which – God willing, we will be moving to next fall.

      Reply
      • Nancy @ Little Homestead in Boise

        Thanks for the clarification! I have to say you’re such a creative soul!!! 🙂 Good luck on your own farm too, there’s a lot to “owning” a place of your own…

        Reply
  44. Jenny N

    Wow….gush!!! Thank you for the peek….how beautiful and how gifted you are…continue to inspire and create!

    Reply
  45. Rebecca

    New to your blog via your new book. Just ordered it today! Looking forward to reading it with a great cuppa coffee! Your style is awesome and an inspiration to so many who make do with what we have by adding little by little. Blessings to you and yours, and I look forward to seeing God work in you life!

    Reply
  46. R'Nita

    Hi! Love what you’ve done with the kitchen. I even kind of like the red sink after the changes you’ve made. I found for a quick change until you can get to it, that contact paper works on the counter top. Of course there is the spray on countertop, too that would be a bit more permanent and I read somewhere you can actually paint the laminate….just some ideas…

    Reply
  47. Terri Grimm

    Love all your French country ideas that you incorporated into your kitchens. You have gotten me back into goodwill and antique shopping again. I kind of got away from it after working for a furniture store. You have taken me back several years ago
    When decorating my kitchen. It has been fun to find out how much I love painted French pieces and fabrics and I can’t forget the copper. I really enjoy seeing everything you do on your gardens, cooking, decor, your family is fun to watch, and I love my essential emotions oils.

    Reply
  48. Karen Holt

    I just came across this from 2013! You are so talented. I thoroughly enjoyed viewing this as much as I do your beautiful forever home ❤️

    Reply

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