Bessarabian rugs quickly evoke Downton Abbey style in any room of the house because of the comfortable informality and charm they bring to a space. This is why these rugs have been prized by decorators in England, France and America. The most desirable Bessarabian rugs were made in the 19th century for the Russian nobility who wanted to emulate the style of the English aristocracy, in other words the Downton Abbey style. Here are seven ways Bessarabian rugs can help you decorate in chic Downton Abbey style.
1. Make a good first impression with a Downton Abbey style entrance such as this warm, welcoming and stylish foyer in a house designed by Gil Schafer. Oil paintings, antique English gilt-wood mirror and 19th-century Irish mahogany bookcase are pulled together by a 19th century blue, red and gold runner rug. Yellow walls and weathered wood floor connect the home with the sunny field and mountain views.
2. Devise a cozy and stylish family room. Upholster chairs and sofa in warm solid colors such as gold and orange-red and pull the whole room together with a dark brown Bessarabian rug with a high energy pattern as in this in this famous sitting room in the Duke and Duchess of Windsor’s Paris home designed by Stéphane Boudin, head of Maison Jansen, the influential Paris-based interior decorating firm. The ailing Duke met his neice Queen Elizabeth for the last time in this room.
3. Recharge a library with with an architectural Bessarabian rug, red lacquer bookcases and chair and sofa upholstered in an overscale print as in this legendary red-lacquered library by Albert Hadley for Brooke Astor which the The New York Times called “one of the most admired interiors of the 20th century.”
The Hermitage Bessarabian rug was inspired by an antique Bessarabian rug very similar to the rug in Albert Hadley’s red lacquer library for Brooke Astor. Hermitage is available as a Needlepoint rug 2406HM or an oriental pile rug 8106HM.
4. Liven up a living room with a fireplace. Nothing says Downton Abbey better than being warmed by a crackling wood fire while nestled in your favorite upholstered chair anchored by a Bessarabian rug as in this Boston living room designed by Scott Snyder.
5. Perk up a writing desk area with an elegant Chinoiserie secretary. Use a mix of warm and cool colors such as red, coral and yellow balanced by cool greens and blues and pull the whole room together with a multicolored Bessarabian rug as in the room by Mario Buatta.
6. Uplift a dining room with scenic paper wallcovering. Equestrian scenes are very Downton Abbey and you can complement them with a Federal style dining table and a neoclassical oriental rug as in this dining room by Bunny Williams which was featured on the cover of House & Garden. Bessarabian rugs were sometimes made in neoclassical patterns such as this Directoire rug by Asmara.
7. Bring modern flair to a media room. Modernize Downton Abbey by mixing contemporary art and furniture on a Bessarabian rug as in this historic Beaux Arts Manhattan townhouse rejuvenated by architect William T. Georgis. The frog painting is by Mike Kelley and the games table and chairs are by Jean Royère.
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Decorating in Downton Abbey Style: