Mixing Classic British Style with American Chic Décor

After living nearly half my life in America and the other half of my life in England, it’s fair to say both my accent and my personal style have become a blending of the two. Stranded somewhere in the Atlantic Ocean, I find myself pulled in both directions when it comes to my home. I love the clean and fresh look of American styles but there’s something about the English Eccentric in me that I can’t help but indulge as well. The good thing is, I don’t really have to choose. Blending both styles can create an exciting eclectic mix and a look that’s uniquely different.

If you love the look of those gorgeous English interiors you see in films or on TV or if you’ve been lucky enough to visit but you aren’t sure how to incorporate the look into your own home, today’s post will help. There are a few items that are quintessential to English decor but they are perfectly suitable for the classic American home and blending the styles will create a personality-filled room that’s trendy without leaving it’s classic roots behind.

The Roll Arm Sofa

roll arm sofa

This classic British shape has been gaining popularity in the States for some time. The softness of an English roll arm sofa hardens any straight lines in your room and combines beautiful with more contemporary light fittings and looks right at home with large pieces of artwork. Consider a fabric like velvet for the perfect spot to enjoy an afternoon cup of tea.

The Classic Chesterfield

dark blue chesterfield sofa

A style that really never dates, the classic chesterfield sofa is practically a British institution. While it’s a classic in design, updating it in a more contemporary colour (like this midnight blue) is the perfect foil for a bold mix of styles as we see above. We also see classic shaped furniture that’s been brought up to date with punchy patterns and more contemporary artwork, proving that when it comes to classic English design, it’s all in the mix.

Vintage Style Furniture

incorporating antiques

For old world charm, consider mixing classic British antiques with bold accents like the lamps seen above or consider traditional style furniture mixed with bold and colourful artwork. Want the look of an antique in a newer piece? You’ll love our Manorhouse range of furniture which mixes seamlessly with American style decor but it’s quality means it can be passed down for generations.

Oil Paintings

displaying art kitchen

Bring the old masters to life in your home by incorporating thrifted or found artwork into unexpected places. The English have no limits when it comes to their art, with an often ‘more is more’ approach. Consider filling a wall with a wide selection of thrifted oil paintings in the bathroom or kitchen for a hint of English eccentricity.

Dark Colours

dark blue walls with cole and sons wallpaper

It was British designer Abigail Ahern that began the renewed love affair for darker wall colours over the last few years but the old masters have been using deeper tones in their homes since the Victorian age. Get brave by using indigos, emeralds, berry tones or dark greys in your decor. Go one step further by incorporating a classic British design – Cole & Son’s Woods Wallpaper – as an accent.

Floral Patterns


If you love the look of the classic English cottage, then mixing some florals into your home can give you that look without having to resort to covering your home in chintz. Consider more contemporary floral patterns like oversized blooms for a more modern take on this classic pattern. Want to take the country cottage look further? Check out our Country Cottage range of painted oak furniture which is perfect for this look.

The Library

bedroom with library

And finally, no fine English gent would be without his library but in today’s modern world, you don’t need a stately home to incorporate this classic design. Here, the redundant space on each side of a large window has been called into action by built in shelving that creates a warm and welcoming space. A vintage tufted headboard has an English charm but it’s balanced out with a contemporary and airy glass light fixture, creating a lovely contrast in mixing old and new. Love this look? Check out our selection of beautiful bookcases here.

Is the English/American mix a style you love? Let us know in the comments or tweet us at @USAOakFurniture – or send us snapshots of  your beautiful bedroom by using the hashtag #OFLUSA on Instagram.


Image Credits: Emily Henderson / Design Brady Tolbert / Photo Zeke Ruelas, My Domaine / Anthropologie, The Neo Trad / Design by Ben Pentreath, Country Living / Helen Norman, Design Sponge / Sally Clark, Studio McGee, Mix & Chic / designed by Jessica Helgerson

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