Wednesday, February 26, 2014

French Country Roof Designs

Currently we are at the ordering windows and roofing stage.  I recently blogged about French Country styled windows, and so today I wanted to talk about French Country roofing design and materials.  Below you can see an example of a cedar shake entry porch roof line supported by painted timbers.  

This extravagant French styled home shows common steeped pitched roof lines often used in French architecture.  It has been pretty cool watching the framers build scaffoling onsite to climb up to the top of our highest peak, in order to create this look.  
I love framers - they are amazing to me!!!

This picture below has a simple turret styled roof and uses slate roofing material (also seen above).  Slate pricing has gone up substantially in the last 7-8 years.  However, there are many roofing products on the market today, that look like slate, but cost less.  
Keep in mind the cost of labor to install.  
It's still going to run pretty high, even on a composite.  

Here is a rendering of my house again.  You can see the roof lines I was talking about.  The highest one on the right is the one that was getting framed last week.  We are discussing roofing colors now and what style shingles.  Of course pricing is key here as well. French styled roofing, with it's many steep pitches, can run up the costs quickly. 

Today's French Country Cozy...

You can give your home a fragrant french aroma, simply by putting sliced lemons, sprigs of rosemary and/or lavender essential oil in a simmering pot of water on the stove.  Just close your eyes, and imagine you are walking in the lavender fields of Provence.
Embaumer la lavande!

Thursday, February 20, 2014

French Country Window Ideas

We are still in the framing stage of building, and therefore we are getting close to ordering our windows.  So as I am doing some final research and getting inspiration, I wanted to share some of the pictures with you.  

This image below has several French country building elements I will be using in our new home.  The wooden painted shutters, the iron Juliet balcony, which we have coming off our master bedroom, and the windows/french door styles.  

This picture below is an authentic french home, showing again, beautiful divided light windows and french doors with intimate balconies.  

Here is a terrific example of a French Country window.  There's a petite flower box sitting on a window ledge, along with the typical board and batten wood painted shutters. 

One area we decided to change, was the window above the tub in the "hers" bathroom.  The original designed called for another arched window, which I love, but being that it was located on the side of the house, and I knew I wanted more privacy for my bathtub, I knew this was a place we could save some money.  When you are building a home, you want to try and save money any way you can, without changes the integrity of the home design you are building, and in my case - French country design.  Here is an example of a window I found instead, that costs less money, just because it is not an arched window.  I love the diamond pattern of the divided light design.  This bathroom is nothing like mine will be, but the window design is.  We simply made it a large square window, as you see here, and used a frosted diamond divided light pattern for aesthetics and privacy.  I cannot wait to see how that looks in my new bathroom.  Just imagine... white marble, crystal lighting and shades of pale aqua - you get the picture.  Bathroom style is a whole other blog post in and of itself though. :)

Today's French Country Cozy:

I'm doing another french food idea today, as it is something we all love right?  Today I wanted to share another quick and easy tip for making a french appetizer/snack.  I love baked brie.  You can make it different ways, but my go to version is to just take puffed pastry, some fruit preserves and a whole brie - rind and all.  Spread the fruit on the top of the brie, wrap it all together, and bake at 350 until your pastry is browning.  The brie will be bubbly and soft.  You can serve it on a platter with crackers, apples, grapes, etc.  

Si delicieux! (So delicious!)

Wishing you a blessed life!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

French Country Lighting

Today I am at home due to this very cold winter storm.  This certainly must be one of the coldest winters the south has ever seen!  Anyhoo, it's giving me a chance to get caught up on some things, which I'm super happy about.  I have been researching lighting for the new house and wanted to share what I have found.  French country lighting can get very pricey, so you have to know where to get it.  

One source I love is

They have a huge selection of many different styles, brands, and price points.  These styles I'm posting today are from a company called Quorum International, which you can order from the website above.  Typically a large 12 light chandelier will run you at minimum $1,200 and go upwards to $20,000.  I found this one below for $678.  A bargain price compared to it's competitors.  Remember, unless it's plated in gold, these lights are typically wired the same way - so it's hard to justify such a price difference. 

I will need at least two of these larger sized chandeliers for the great room, so the price will definitely fit in the budget.

Quorum International has several different style of lights in this line - like wall sconces as seen above priced from $68- $181.

This eight light chandelier, which would look great in the library/music room, is only $496.

This nine light is only $570 - I'm thinking the dining room.
I also love crystal chandeliers.  I'm planning on putting more crystal in the bedroom and my bathroom, as well as, adding a few "drippings" in the dining room.  So another thing checked off the list.  A great find for the day...

Here is a happy French Country Cozy image 
for some inspiration.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

The French Country Great Room

This weekend we went out to the house to see the progress that's been made this past week.  The hubster took a photo of Autumn and I standing on the newly laid decking where our soon to be french country great room will rise up.  So it inspired me to write about what that means to me.  I love this photo below because it represents many of the elements  I love about today's French country style.   We actually have several of the same features as seen here below.  From the vaulted rustic beamed ceiling, to the french chandelier, as well as the mantel/fireplace.  Even though the ceiling is high, the room feels warm.  That's important when considering this style - it must always still be a warm and inviting space.

Country French style is curvy, with delicate lines, such as those of the cabriolet leg. These types of pieces are often paired with more sturdy pieces varying in finishes. The focus is on creating a feeling of warmth, with natural materials and a variety of textures. Some other notable features are rough-hewn beams, stone elements and rustic pieces paired with elegant ones.  More formal pieces, such as lavishly upholstered armchairs with delicately carved legs, can be paired with a bit more casual pieces.  Another example of contrast is ladder-back chairs, with rush seats, used to further combine texture and simplicity. A large, heavy armoire is an essential piece that may vary in style and finish from another wooden cabinet nearby. In other words, do not match tables, cabinets, etc. with one another, in either finish, or style.  Above all, Country French is a design style that has more to do with ambience than attention to perfection.

Today's French Country Cozy...

QUICHE - I love quiche and the best part is - My little girl loves it too! So that's a win/win in my house.  It's comforting, healthy, and taste amazing.  It's also extremely easy to make, I don't even follow a recipe.  You can also prepare it the day before to serve with a side salad, for a lite brunch, the following day.  All I do is take a premade rolled pie crust and place it in a 8 or 9 inch pie pan.  (I prefer glass ones.)  Crimp the edges and use a fork to put holes in the bottom of the pie crust, so it can bake.  Next I just grab 6-8 eggs and crack them open in a mixing bowl.  I use a hand held whisk and stir in either water or a milk/cream of your choice - all the while whisking it together.  This makes the quiche light and fluffy, which I prefer over a very dense quiche.  It also saves on your eggs.  Then you can just grate/chop any toppings of your choice.  Throw them in, add some sea salt, give it a quick stir and pour it into your pie shell.  Bake at 350 until set in the center.  
Bon Appetite!  Have a blessed day.