At Home With Country: Review & Giveaway

September 8, 2010

Recently, I was sent a lovely text called At Home With Country, written by Christina Strutt, owner of Cabbages and Roses, a company specializing in printed linens for home and clothing.   

The very first thing to catch my eye was the cover image, depicting the bathroom from Christina’s own ‘Brook Cottage’.  I love the the intricate detail and thickness of the white mirror over the sink, and the rustic hooks holding cozy bathrobes.  The space proves that even floral plates can actually look lovely in a bathroom !    



The book was a delightful read cover to cover, filled with design ideas for adding warmth and character to your home, even if you don’t consider your personal style to be ‘country’. 

I often associate ‘country’ with ‘farmhouse’ but after I read the book, I found that ‘country’ style is not nearly as narrow a definition as I imagined, at least according to this author.  Rather, ‘country’ is the medley of colors and textures, soft florals and cottons, and rustic objects paired with simple elements that are collected over time.  ‘Country’ is the practice of creating a home that is beautiful, but most importantly, comfortable and lived in.


bathroom at home with country


The book offers glimpses into Christina’s own home, plus others houses scattered throughout England, apartments in New York, and cottages dotting the east coast of the United States.    

red and white bedroom

front porch and firewood


You’ll see a lot of classic English country design that stems from the author’s own love of relaxed and comfortable rooms filled with painted furniture and feminine florals. 

kitchen island

blue and white country


If you’re passionate about older homes with character, quirky antiques, or if you have your own collection of well loved objects, then you’ll gain a lot of inspiration from the pages of At Home With Country as I did.


vignette at home with country

white bathroom


Photography by Edina van der Wyck.   All copyrighted images taken from At Home with Country  by Christina Strutt and used with permission.  CICO Books, $29.95;


black chandy


white slipcover and fireplace


If you want to read a great conversation with the designer and author Christina Strutt, take a peek at this interview over at HGTV.      

And because we all love pretty pictures . . . 

And you know you want another design book for your coffee table or for your bookshelf . . . 


white tablescape


You can to be entered to win a copy of At Home With Country, simply by answering this question in a comment: 

What does the word ‘Country’ mean to you?

I welcome random answers about music, homeland, or décor.  Close your eyes, say ‘country’ then type what first comes to mind, no matter what it is.  Can’t wait to hear it !

One winner will be sent your own copy direct from the publisher.   Winner chosen at random.  Giveaway ends Saturday September 11th at 8 p.m. 

Good luck!



Tags: ,

307 Responses to “At Home With Country: Review & Giveaway”

  1. Aimee says:

    To me country means a slow, simple way of life. Nothing extravagant. Never cold- in any sense of the word. Always warm and welcoming.

  2. Valerie says:

    Country:I think of breezes & sheer panels,a relaxed atmosphere, clean-not sparse, comfy-inviting pillows and cushions, old and new joined perfectly together. Folk art,antiques,streams and birds. I think I like it!

  3. Annebee says:

    I think of ‘country’ as design with a rustic, fresh and comfortable feel. A friendly atmosphere where each piece has a story and the overall aesthetic is lovely and free, in a slightly old-timey way :)

  4. Karen says:

    “Country” for me means a simple, comfortable life and decor. No fuss, not too much formality, just a comfortable place to live (whether you live in the country or not).

  5. Deb says:

    “Country” makes me think of a comfortable and simple lifestyle, family gatherings, working hard and relaxing fully. Spring and summer – fresh linens and laundry on the line flapping in the breeze, a walk through the fields on a warm summer evening, riding on the John Deere Tractor, making hay, fishing in the pond, planting and working in the garden and feeding the cows!. Fall – decorating with all of the beautiful colors of autumn, harvest time, picking up pinecones and putting out the pumpkins, making apple butter and sipping apple cider by a bonfire, nesting. Winter – warm afghans and quilts made by grandma, reading a good book while sitting by the fire (wrapped up in the quilt, of course), bundling up for a walk through a cold, snowy field looking for the perfect Christmas Tree, sledding down the big hill. Ah! Now I’m homesick!

  6. Tracie Koenig says:

    Comfortable and simple and easy on the eyes

  7. C & R says:

    The post is just delightful, thank you for those wonderful words and thoughts. We appreciate and send warm thoughts your way.


    C & R

  8. I love the soft colors and calming mood these images induce. Country to me means relaxed ambience with clear air and blue skies…wrap around porches, cowboy boots, rich leathers and light cotton fabrics…beautiful in an old-fashioned way. Loves me some country :).

  9. Beautiful images, Kate. “Country” sometimes says “my mom’s house in the 80s to me,” but I am thankful that the definition has evolved to say “warm, charming, cozy, and inviting.” Meant to tell you how much I like your new banner. :)

  10. Country to me means nurture and nature, warm and welcoming, sunshine and serenity.

  11. Anna Trout says:

    To me country means home. Whether that’s the home I grew up in, the home I live in now, or the home I’m trying to create for my family. It means a loving, comfortable, and live-able home :) Thanks for the fabulous giveaway!

  12. Chrissy says:

    To me, county means simple and comfortable. When I look at the photos from the book, I see my lifestyle : slow and simplistic, yet so inviting and beautiful. I would never give up my country farmhouse for the world!

  13. Jessica says:

    Country means simple and laid-back to me.

  14. Jen says:

    Country to me means a sense of peace and space, and an appreciation of the beauty of simple things.

  15. Nikki says:

    “Country”, whether elegant or casual, is what glorifies all the aspects of homemaking and uses those things in decorating the house to become a comfortable and pleasing home. It engages all the senses and is always welcoming.

  16. barb says:

    country to me means home, comfort, kindness, and relaxation.

  17. Heather says:

    Country still calls up images of dusty wreaths with forest green ribbon and wooden goose plaques that say “kiss the cook!” on them. You know — that 80s vibe. This look is more what I’d call farmhouse — comfy but not busy, practical, relaxed and welcoming.

  18. Kimmy says:

    Country to me means light, breezy colors, and warm wood tones! Beautiful breezes and that comfy cozy feel that makes life feel easy!

  19. The word “country” means comfort and feeling at peace. I am very much into this style of living and just looking at the photos relaxes me.

  20. Donna says:

    Country…………giant white down comforters,roaring fires, laundry on a line smelling like downy,fields of lavender and suflowers and great smells coming from the kitchen. Dogs running outside and chasing a few chickens and planting flowers up the walkway.I guess that means country is a state of mind? I think so. That book looks wonderful, thank-you for the chance to win! <3 Donna

  21. Rebecca says:

    Country means old and new mixed together to me. I love a new sideboard paired with an old white rustic pitcher, or serving tray. Is means I’m not going to feel stiff as a board sitting in the wingback chair, or stand uncomfortably wondering which hard and solid piece of furniture should I sit on!

    It also means the house I’m going to have someday away from the ‘ the rolling hills of Anyplace, USA..lots of dirt roads and black, black sky to backdrop the stars. Aaaahhh! Now that’s the dream!

  22. Marna says:

    Country = effortless, comfortable, well-used and lovedl..

  23. Sarah says:

    To me country brings to mind clean, comfortable, simple homes filled with laid back living gentlemen and sweet tea drinkin’ southern belles. Where the kids use their manners and are taught to love and serve the Lord. Country is the place where your always welcomed to sit a spell. More than anything to this raised in the city gal, country means the small town in the south that I call home. :)
    Thanks for the great giveaway!
    God’s blessings,

  24. Pat says:

    To me, country encompasses a lot. It is laid back and can be formal but is never stuffy.

  25. kathy says:

    Country means home cooking, relaxing atmosphere and being able to put your feet up!

  26. Carrie I says:

    County is simple, clean and fresh without fussy, busy clutter.

  27. Amber says:

    Beautiful images. Country means worn, comfortable, outdoors, wide open fields, the smell of fresh cut grass, running rivers and creeks, fresh air, beautiful views, green trees, strawberries, corn on the cob, bare feet, sunsets, and rustic barns.

  28. Lynn says:

    Country means the Big Sky of Alberta, home of prairies, foothills and the Rockie Mountains!

  29. Mary says:

    Country means, back to the ways things used to be, comfy, cozy, warm and simple. Aprons, clothes lines, warm wood and old chippyness –

    bee blessed

  30. Pat says:

    Country is crickets and frogs signing their lullaby’s at night. And stars shining boldy in the sky.

  31. cassie says:

    to me “country” means just going back to the basics… rustic charm, farmhosue inspired, homespun textiles…. it’s all about history and pieces made with love and mosty by hand.

  32. Tana says:

    I think of plaids, dark wood, and pig and cow stencils when I think of country. Cottage is what comes to mind when looking at the photos in this post.

  33. Country means wide open spaces, small town cafes and boutiques, big yards, fiddles in the band, homecooking, wooden frames, rocking chairs, cattle in the ‘backyard’ and smiling at everyone. :-)

  34. Alisa D says:

    The first thing I thought of when I thought “country” was home. I grew up in a fairly rural community or in “the country”. The book looks great!

  35. Doreen R says:

    Country is natural looking dark wood.
    Country is rustic.

  36. Amy says:

    Country means sitting on the back porch of my great grandmother’s old red farmhouse. Country means using her mixing bowl as the inspiration for my turquoise kitchen. Country means repurposing again and again as the inspiration strikes. Country means distressed, but not stressed out. Country means linens dried on the line, cayotes howling at night, and running through the field between my grandmother and great-grandmother’s houses. Country is plates on the wall, floral in every room and letting the kids wear their shoes in the house.

    Country is home.

  37. Selena says:

    Really lovely images– they made me actually breathe after a long day! To me country just means comfortable… sunny blue skies, a warm throw right where you need it, nothing fussy, everything lived in. Country is “help yourself’ and “make yourself at home”. Thanks for the chance!

  38. Abbie says:

    My mom’s house has a country style, so ‘Country’ means home to me – that definitely includes fresh cut flowers and something yummy baking in the kitchen.

  39. Megan says:

    Country means comfy cozy to me… lots of quilts and fluffy beds, old furniture, and beautiful landscape portraits right outside your window! And of course a settle breeze blowing through the windows lifting the curtains…

  40. Dawn H says:

    To me, country brings images of comfort and peace, lots of trees and wide open spaces. Maybe a big tree with a tire swing and a nice garden. Country is good : )

  41. Bernadette says:

    home. especially now. it means home to me and this city girl LOVES it. Not necesarily my house or decor (yet), but physically, where I hang out is so country.


  42. R says:

    Country means warm and casual.

  43. The first thing that came to mind was music- then I had visions of hottie country singers. What’s wrong with me?? I so love the new blog design- pretty, clean, and so user friendly. First class.

  44. Sue says:

    The first word that came to mind when I thought “country” was comfortable. I think of it as a comfortable, easy style. Nothing too elegant or formal…a place where you could put your feet on the coffee table and eat cookies in your chair.

  45. country –> airy, lovely, fall, painted wood. I’d love to have a copy of that book!

  46. Amber B. says:

    In my mind’s eye, country means Texas. I love decorating with rustic Lone Star touches, from bronzed fixtures to tin stars to a touch of red, white and blue. Comfortable, homey and Texas… country.

  47. Caroline says:

    To me country is both practical and cozy with some rustic thrown in.

  48. Tara says:

    Comfort and a place to heal

  49. Sandy says:

    To me country is comfort, cozy, warmth, simply—-home.

  50. Valerie says:

    *Country* to me signifies…..warmth…welcome to our home kind of feeling when you enter…pop your feet up on the coffee table and grab a delightful mag. from the wicker stand and have a good read with a cup of coffee….pretty wildflowers in a mason jar on the fireplace mantle..delicate ol’ rose curtains trailing down the window sills….ummm..that country feeling! Cheers, Valerie.

  51. Priscilla K. says:

    Country means comfortable, cozy, cottons, quilts, and furniture with history. Nothing fussy!

  52. Michelle says:

    Country means quiet, peaceful and comfortable.

  53. sy says:

    i think of taylor swift and blue dresses.
    songyueyu at gmail

  54. Chrystie DeSmet says:

    I think of the words “homey”, “realxed” & “at home”. I love country always have! I really love how country was done in the photos above! Clean, white & I LOVE painting furniture!! So cool!

  55. Susan says:

    Country to me means space to breathe and the simple comforts that makes it effortless to do so…

  56. Linda says:

    When I think of Country I instantly think of the rolling hills of Vermont. Cows in the pasture, beautiful sunsets, old statuesque barns and random rusted farm equipment laying around.

  57. Jessica says:

    To me, country is home. Bozeman, Montana lives inside me, and I miss it all the time. It’s the autumn wheat fields, dinner in Grandpa’s cabin with the warmth of the fireplace at my back, the big sky stretching over my happy soul. I love country.

  58. Becky says:

    Country- The view outside the french doors in the dining room, the expanse of pasture grass that lies just beyond the back yard fence, the bulldozer that my husband bought so he could build a lake in the midst of all that grass, the John Deere tractor that is always near by, the gravel driveway, the mail lady that gives the dog a treat everyday with her delivery. Country is where I live, raise my son, and relish the everyday nuances of country living

  59. laurie says:

    To me “Country” means: a home that is comfortable! Simple and vintage are two other descriptive words that come to mind. I love color and changing my surroundings with the season.

  60. Aubrey says:

    Homey, warm, rustic, welcoming…chickens…(c: Oh what I wouldn’t give to be out in the cool country air right now!

  61. Elizabeth says:

    I’m a Southerner through and through so country to me means sweet tea in mason jars, rocking on the front porch on a summer night, Sweet Home Alabama playing in the background, and the smell of homemade pie in the air.

  62. Vanessa says:

    Country means: corn fields, back yard gardens, outdoor dogs, gravel drive ways, quietness that goes on for miles, family, painted mailboxes, good cookin’, big tractors, hard work, shade tree and animal sounds. Country decor is a place where you can kick up your feet and relax a while. Rocking chairs on a porch, clean and tidy interiors that are still so inviting, big windows with wonderful views, crisp and relaxed linens. Nothing too fussy or that can’t hold up to some good use. Country decor is like your most comfortable broken in pair of blue jeans that fit just right.

  63. nicole marie says:

    Country means home…comfort and mom. My mother was always very into creating a space that was country home. It was inviting and warm. Filled with great smells and interesting juxtapositions. We even raised our own chickens, had a pet goat, grew all our own veggies and then canned them!

  64. Rebecca says:

    Country means to me a state of mind. Finding beauty in the simple things. Creating a home for your family that is rich in love, hugs and kisses.

  65. Kaleigh Sanio says:

    Country to me means comfort, home, cozy rooms and roaring wood burning fireplaces. Big backyards with big old trees, having the freedom to play outside with the kids and dog. Most of all, country means home.

  66. The kitchen leaves me green and writhing with envy and bathroom, I could live in the bathroom forever.

  67. Kathy says:

    To me, country means down-home, relaxing comfort. You know? That word encompasses so much more than I realize. It’s actually quite difficult to describe for me. It runs pretty deep, I think!

  68. cailan says:

    Country means white curtains and calico quilts. picnic tables with red checked cloths. warm woods and simple transfer-ware.

  69. Michelle says:

    When I think of country, the words warmth and worn-in comfort come to mind. My grandma always listened to country music when I was growing up… Alabama, George Strait, the Judds.. the memories make me feel warm and comfortable!

  70. kelley says:

    FRESH, clean air…especially after a rainfall

  71. Kim says:

    Country to me is a lifestyle. When I was a kid, I hated the look of country/old/antiques, but my tastes have matured and “country” is what I prefer. I have tried to decorate my home w/ as much of a country feel as I can currently afford. My wedding last year had a “country” theme (from the pictures of my husband and I as kids hanging out twine to galvanized bucket my flower girl carried her flowers in to the barn we had our reception in). The country style gives me warm feelings and reminds me of home. The pictures from the book are great inspirations for decorating and made me miss my momma!

  72. Shala says:

    When I think of “country”, I picture a field of wildflowers surrounded by mountains. Some words that come to mind are simple, rustic, beautiful, and relaxed; everything that I would love my home to be.

  73. Anne says:

    My grandmother’s house as a child. Nights on the sleeping porch. Always cool under hand ironed linen sheets. The smell of rose Geranium and lemon verbena all around us.

  74. Kim says:

    Country evokes so many things… I’m from the south so it means a way of life, a genre of music, the manner in which people [should] treat one another, a place (as in, out in the country), and of course a way of decorating to create a welcoming space that’s a refuge for friends and family.

  75. “Country” to me means wide open spaces and friendly faces.

  76. christina says:

    country is a casual, comfortable, rustic dining room table filled to the brim with piping hot platters of home-cooked food and surrounded with a ton of smiling and chewing and laughing faces.

  77. Yisenia says:

    I would love for my home to feel “country” a place where you go and you never wanna leave………so cozy and so and inviting : )

  78. Heidi says:

    Country means comfortable to me. Not rushed, inviting, lived in. Filled with items that make you love your home.

  79. Ruth Hill says:

    Well, we now live in the country, so when I think of country, I think of lots of wide open sapces and old-time decor. I think of simple but comfortable accessories.

  80. Lynsey says:

    cozy, relaxed, warmth

  81. Dream Mom says:

    Country to me is a home where things are always comfortable and all of your needs are met. The fabrics have that home made look, the furniture is always comfortable and you are never afraid to sit on the couch, use the kitchen table for a project or anything else. It’s simple, pretty and a throw back to days of old.

  82. Chapel says:

    When I think of ‘country’, I think of home! Home is in Georgia although I no longer live there but, more than that that… country reminds me of my grandmother, a simple kind of life. Country reminds me of peaceful skies, clean air and organic surroundings. Country is the feeling of comfort.

  83. Meghan says:

    Don’t laugh BUT when I think country I think Britney Spears.
    But true.

  84. Cindy says:

    First of all I wanted to say that I love the new header decoration and font..not that the old was bad but this is nice too. When I think of Country, I think of think of green, wide open spaces, gingham, denim, cowboy boots and rustic or simple decor. What a beautiful book!

  85. Leah says:

    Country means home, comfort and cozy.

  86. Monica says:

    To me, country means home….cozy & charming!

  87. Liz says:

    Country means home, family and warmth.

  88. Sarah says:

    OOH! What great eye candy and inspiration!

  89. Kylene says:

    Country means the best things about my childhood. Growing up in farm country in Wisconsin, down the hill from a herd of cows, goats in the back yard, ducks in the front. It means watching Amish buggies trot by on the road and the smell of home made bread in the oven. It’s running around barefoot with my siblings and swinging on a tire swing; trekking through the woods to get raspberries, finding wintergreen, and swimming in the river. It means a dining room table and chairs built by my uncle. Home renovation done by my dad. Clothes made by my mom. It’s the smell of the wind coming through the trees without a trace of civilization carried on it. It’s watching deer run across the fields. It’s listening to the Canadian geese fly overhead. It’s putting hats and mittens knitted by my grandmother on top of the wood-burning stove so they can dry in winter. It’s snuggling up under heavy crocheted blankets from my aunt. It’s the smell of laundry that’s dried out on the line. It’s light and warmth and family and creativity and happiness and so much more than I can explain.

  90. O Mom says:

    Contyr is a lot cuter than I thought it was too….
    Country means comfort.

  91. traci says:

    i cannot get over the white rooms!!
    i love this look and wish i could get this in my home.

  92. MegganB says:

    Country = home…

  93. Julie says:

    French country & Gustavian furnishings. Most everything painted white or greyblue. Quilts and apple pie. Country is so very home. It’s where we live, literally, and where we feel most comfortable.

  94. MoeWest says:

    Painted furniture, quilts, much-loved collections, comfy and casual all say country to me.

  95. annelies says:

    Peace, serenity and comfort….all things that I hope to achieve in our home.

  96. heather says:

    country means a BIG front porch with lots of extended family pulling up the drive… And cutting down a fresh Christmas tree. What a spectacular find this book is! Thank you for the opportunity to win a copy!

  97. Tammy says:

    Country means hard work, relaxation, comfort, good eats and great conversation!

  98. Jessica Y says:

    Pure comfort-ableness!

  99. Erin C. says:

    Country means…HOME! Its the log cabin my parents built that I grew up in with my brother and sister. Its the cross stitch my mom does, the gardens my dad tends, and the place I always go when I need a break.

Leave a Reply