Dos & Don'ts Of Rustic Decor

In terms of home decor styles, rustic is a choice that is always on-trend. Rustic styles have been a popular choice for decades now, and it’s reassuringly easy to see why.

As times have changed and life has become ever-more modern, there is a certain appeal in a design that harks back to the “old ways”. Combining the charm of the old, rustic ways with modern conveniences is a perfect home-style blend that passes across the centuries, picking up the best that each has to offer and blending them together into something wonderful. No matter how modern and digital the world becomes, there will always be a place for rustic style.


Given the enduring popularity of this kind of style, if you’re a fan, there’s nothing that should hold you back from giving it a go in your own property. Whether you’re looking to complete an entire transformation of your property to a rustic style or just wish to focus on an individual centerpiece, you’re sure to be making a good choice. In an effort to make your good choice a great one, here are a few “dos” and “don’ts” to keep in mind as you go through your home transformation…


DO: Use plenty of wood

If there is one element of rustic decor that is essential, it’s wood. Bare wooden furniture, wooden floors, wooden kitchen counters— all of these options are well worth exploring, and can play a vital role in ensuring your decor is “rustic” rather than outright shabby.

For many of us, the classic rustic decor look involves copious amounts of pine, but you can use other woods and still hit all the style marks. If you’d like a more dramatic wood, try dark cherry or mahogany; or for a paler, softer option, beech and beech effect are always popular. Both still achieve the necessity of using wood as part of your rustic decor, but they have their own charm that adds a little individuality to the overall finished aesthetic.


DON’T: Go overboard on your use of wood

As important as wooden elements are to a rustic design, don’t go overboard. Too much wood can be overwhelming, especially if you have chosen heavy furniture pieces that dominate the space.

It’s important to intersperse glass and metals with the wood to try and lighten the feel of a room. For example, a coffee table with wooden legs could be modified to have a glass surface; this keeps the overall rustic look but adds a lightness that your living room will undoubtedly benefit from.

DO: Add softer touches


It’s incredibly easy for rustic decor to become rough. This is understandable, as unfinished wood, sharp edges, and a somewhat raw, messy finish are part and parcel of the key components of this kind of look. However, authentic as the roughness may be, it’s far from ideal when it comes to actually living in your rustic home.

It’s important to add softer, gentler elements to the overall aesthetic; this can help avoid the aforementioned roughness that a rustic look has a tendency to trend towards. Head to the likes of Deconovo and stock up on softer touches such as cushions, throws, and chair covers; these items won’t detract from the rustic feel at all, but they will make the space more comfortable to live in. This, ultimately, is the most important consideration of all, so try to remember not to venture so far down the rustic path that your home becomes outright uncomfortable!

DON’T: Overlook the need for a fireplace

Yes, it’s possible to achieve excellent rustic decor without a fireplace, but it’s tough. If you really want to commit to this look, you’re going to need a fireplace. There are some elements of a home decor style that are unavoidable and, for the most part, the link between a fireplace and a rustic look is so intertwined they’re impossible to separate.

If you already have a fireplace, then adding rustic touches to it is relatively simple; a few plants and a natural, rather than painted, finish should suffice. If you don’t have a fireplace, then you may want to consider adding one if possible. If a fireplace is a little out of budget, then a wood burning stove might be a great compromise that achieves the look without quite the same substantial upfront costs.

Do: Consider your cleaning routine


As wonderful as it is to have a house style that you love, there’s no denying the fact that rustic finishes can be difficult to clean. Slate, unfinished wood, and any other home elements that are in a “raw” state can be rather difficult to maintain. Without a coating to add stain-resistance, you may find yourself dealing with an uphill battle when it comes to preserving the quality of the furniture, fixtures, and fittings in your home.

To try and combat this, every item you install in your home must pass a number of tests. The first test is the style test; does this piece fit with your rustic decor? If it does, then it’s tempting to just go ahead and buy it, but there’s a second question: is this piece going to be easy to maintain? If you suspect an element of your home will be difficult to maintain, then it’s largely irrelevant how it suits the overall look— it’s going to make your day-to-day life harder, so set aside.

Don’t: Forget color

Some people insist that a rustic decor should be completely natural, which means choosing wall colors and decor pieces that fit into this theme. However, too many neutrals, naturals, and “earthy” colors can become overwhelming.

When it comes to interior design, the term “pop of color” may be overused, but it’s still a key element. Go for natural touches throughout most of your decor, but add a splash of color here and there too— you’ll be amazed at how well it ties the whole look together.

In conclusion

If you keep the above in mind, you should be able to achieve the rustic decor dream with ease. Enjoy!