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17 DIY-Friendly Projects To Make Your Home Look European

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Sophisticated yet cozy, grand yet approachable, I think we can all agree that European-styled homes are worth emulating. Europe is the epicenter of luxurious and timeless interiors with French countryside living rooms, Tuscan kitchen designs, British old-world charm, and the modern style of the Swedish. If you desire to make your home look European, below you will find small to large DIY projects you can try, all based on real houses for sale in Europe right now!

1. Replace Basic Doorknobs With Brass, Vintage, or Ornate Styles

3. Apartments / Flats for Sale at Paris, Paris,75006 France

A great and easy way to give your home an elevated look is to replace the doorknobs on your interior doors.

Simply switching out your basic and outdated doorknobs can make even the most ordinary door look more expensive! Plus, it can take less than 5 minutes to do. Sprucing up your doors with ornate or brass doorknobs adds that European flair.

2. Consider Toile Wallpaper

9. Apartments / Flats for Sale at Paris, Paris,75008 France

One of the best ways to use color and pattern in your house while keeping your furniture neutral is to embrace toile wallpaper. It is a great way of giving your room a romantic French feel and the toile wallpaper will contrast beautifully with the white panels and ceiling.

But first, choose a peel and stick to get your feet wet and see if you like the style or not!

3. Swap Out Basic White Plastic Wall Plates for Brass Covers

2. Apartments / Flats for Sale at Paris, Paris,75007 France

Electrical outlets and wall switches are necessary, but they’re not the most exciting features of a home. Adding a basic white plastic wall plate (also called a face plate) doesn’t do much for it either. All the details count, so when giving your home a makeover, don’t overlook these features.

No home improvement is complete without chic wall plates, especially when you have beautiful doorknobs to go with them. Taking inspiration from Europe, replace the plastic with brass outlets. It is one of the best finishing touches that make the room feel instantly luxe!

For a seamless look, make sure that the electrical outlets match the wall plate, should you choose to switch those as well.

4. Replace Your Outdated Light Fixture With a Classy Chandelier

3. Apartments / Flats for Sale at Paris, Paris,75006 France

Synonymous with Parisian luxury, classy chandeliers are the perfect focal point in a room as they can instantly make a room classier and elegant. Updating your outdated light fixtures is a no-fail way to update your entire space!

5. Add Molding to Existing Doors

3. Single Family Homes for Sale at Kilkenny, Ireland

If there is one thing most European homes in France will never be without, it’s molded or engraved doors. Trim is a decorative accent that’s perfect for adding texture and interest to a basic door, wall, or entire room. Take the European design approach and enhance your space by adding molding, specifically to your basic flat hollow core doors.

It may seem like a hard and expensive DIY project, but with some math and planning, it’s affordable and achievable. And the results speak for themselves!

6. Add Shutters to Your Exterior

4. Vineyard Real Estate for Sale at Montpellier, Herault,34000 France

Shutters are not only a key way to make your home look European, but they bring historic elegance to an exterior too.

A few things to keep in mind: For an authentic look, the shutters should match the shape of the window and look like they would cover the window when closed.

7. Install Crown Molding to Rooms

12. Estate for Sale at Amsterdam, North Holland,1083AB Netherlands

As I mentioned before, molding is a common feature in most European homes. And it doesn’t just have to go on your doors! Use crown molding, an accessory trim used to wrap around the perimeter of a room, to give your ceiling a luxurious and polished look.

Whether you are trying to give your dining room some glamour or make your bedroom feel glam, you can give any room an elevated and European style with crown molding.

8. Install Cremone Hardware to Bookcases and Cabinets

15. Apartments / Flats for Sale at Paris, Paris,75008 France

A crémone bolt is decorative hardware that also serves a purpose. First appearing in France, it’s used to fasten casement or swinging windows, which is why they’re not typically seen in America.

But even if you have double-hung windows instead of casement windows, you can still get the decorative look of a crémone bolt. Just fasten it to your bookcases or other inset cabinets instead! The end result is a dressed-up bookcase with European flair.

9. Add Wall Molding To Empty Wall Space

wall molding european house

Trying to figure out how to give an empty wall space an elevated look is no easy task. Should a gallery wall be put up? Will bold colors spruce it up? So many questions! But if you want to make your home look European, adding wall molding or paneling is a good idea.

If this seems like too much work or if you don’t have all the tools you need, thankfully you can purchase pre-made kits that make the job way easier.

Related: How to Transform Your Room With Parisian Wall Paneling

10. Install Beams

European kitchen and dining area

Beams have a timeless appeal, which makes them the best feature to add to high ceilings. Not only will they never go out of style, but they fit a variety of aesthetics and add instant architectural appeal.

Not everyone has an old barn in their backyard to rummage for rustic beams, but thankfully, you can purchase and install faux beams to make this project way more achievable!

11. Update the Furnishings

26. Villas / Townhouses for Sale at Dublin, Ireland

Adding big architectural details like large windows and marble fireplaces can be expensive. So if you can’t change the architecture, then change the furnishings!

Updating your room with luxe drapes, an antique mirror, an ornate coffee table, and tufted upholstered furniture is guaranteed to make your home look European.

12. Swap Out Basic Doors for Antique Wood Doors

5. Villas / Townhouses for Sale at Napoli, Italy

Give your space a sense of history by replacing your basic doors with something antique or vintage. Not sure where to find these vintage pieces? Try Etsy or go to your local antique or salvage shop.

13. Add Ceiling Interest

6. Vineyard Real Estate for Sale at Montpellier, Herault,34000 France

Though a ceiling design may sound intensive, it’s a project we’ve tackled before and the end result was beautiful! Instead of tearing everything down to add a vault, work with what you have to add ceiling interest.

After all, it is one of the features you first notice when you enter a room. Give your ceiling a French country living touch with beadboard, beams, or a paneled wooden ceiling.

14. Match All Your Hardware

8. Vineyard Real Estate for Sale at Montpellier, Herault,34000 France

Though mixing metals is a look, it takes skill to pull it off effortlessly. When in doubt, match all your hardware. It’s not boring; it’s polished!

From your door knobs to your curtain rod, the uniformity of your hardware will make your home feel classically elegant.

15. Install Wood Floors

13. Vineyard Real Estate for Sale at Montpellier, Herault,34000 France

Add a dose of classic style to your American home by installing herringbone parquet floors. They give any room a charming and elegant Parisian touch!

Related: 7 Timeless Flooring Ideas To Steal From Paris

16. Layer Lighting

4. Estate for Sale at Nieuwersluis, Utrecht,3631 AC Netherlands

All interior designers say to layer lighting in your home to achieve a collected and beautiful look. And they’re not wrong!

Update your home with table lamps, sconces, and chandeliers. The options are endless. Need inspiration? This living room is a great blueprint for layering lights.

17. Embrace Wood Cabinets

19. Apartments / Flats for Sale at Via Cernaia Milano, Milan,20121 Italy

The styles of what’s popular are always shifting, and though wood cabinets are making a comeback, they’re generally thought of as outdated. But if you have them, why not embrace them? (Though there are some woods that are extremely orange, yellow, or red that are outdated.)

To accomplish European design, embrace natural wood cabinets. Or if you’re in the middle of a makeover, consider installing a nice medium tone for a butler’s pantry or kitchen refresh. As a plus, stained cabinets are usually better at concealing damage than painted cabinets.

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Out of the 17 ideas on this list, I’ve done 12, and I can say that they are all worth the effort! To make your home look more European, you can incorporate any of these DIY projects.

Looking for more European home inspo? You will love this next post.

Up Next: Are You Currently Building or Renovating? I’ve Looked at Thousands of Luxury European Homes and These Are 21 Features They Have in Common

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How to make a home look European


Founder and editor of My Chic Obsession, Carolyn is your trusted fashion maven. Carolyn's drive to help others achieve a classic and timeless wardrobe fuels her posts, making a go-to resource for style seekers worldwide. Beyond the wardrobe, she resides in the heartland of the Midwest, dreaming up new ideas and raising her two lively boys - her biggest fashion critics.