Groom Your Rooms With Kentucky Derby Decor

It is only one marquee horse race in the country, but there’s something about the Kentucky Derby that conjures a singular sense of love and refinement. Where I live it’s a significant cause for celebration — never mind both whole countries stand between Birmingham, Alabama, and Churchill Downs. I understand countless folks here in town that can not wait to split out their picture necklace and bead chokers, uncap the Maker’s Mark and invite friends for seeing parties on this first weekend in May.

So as long as everybody’s in the soul, I thought, why not take it one step further? Try out these ideas for adding a little Kentucky style to your home. Long after the winner increased garland has wilted, you are going to remain at the summit of bluegrass chic.

RTA Studio Residential Architects

Drive through Kentucky and you will see miles of easy plank fences like this one, marking the bounds of the thoroughbred farms which blanket the countryside. Fun fact: Traditionally, fences painted white signified wealth — they delivered a subtle message that the farm’s owners could manage to repaint each couple of years. Natural timber or brown-painted fences were believed a cut below. Who knew?

Archer & Buchanan Architecture, Ltd..

This split-rail fence is a rustic comparative of the plank version. Its rough-hewn profile marries perfectly with the rock barn in the background.

When they’re not filled with crushed ice and bourbon, silver julep cups — the cocktail vehicle of choice at Derby time — become household workhorses (yikes, that pun originated out of nowhere). This trio holds petite bouquets, but you are going to see julep cups used as pen holders, jewelry catchalls and decorative screens. Bonus points if they keep your monogram in a well-mannered script.

OK, so it’s out of a horse show and not a race, but this loving cup surely belongs in Derby-inspired decoration. The julep cup is a small but vital supporting player in the little bunch of vessels.


If the horses have run for the roses and the lucky winner is draped with the garland, increased temples tucked through your house will add to the festive air. This one appears right at home amid a formal china cupboard.

McKay Flooring Ltd

Besides bluegrass, Kentucky is known for just one other huge B: bourbon. The walls and floors in this area are concealed in flashed whisky barrels (just pretend they endure a Wild Turkey or Woodford Reserve emblem). Who may get enough of this rich, mellow sheen?

McKay Flooring Ltd

Following is a gorgeous detail from the whisky barrel timber over. Each plank has its own particular character, so you’re ensured a one-of-a-kind look.

Rough Linen

What’s the Kentucky Derby without hats? This sweetly easy pink number transitions from head to wall when the race has been run. It will not be the most flamboyant topper from the audience, but it will not seem garish hanging around the hook, either.

A collection of straw bonnets perched on this particular rack feels sprightly and spring-fresh enough for Derby day and beyond.

Alan Mascord Design Associates Inc

And ultimately, the star of the show: equestrian accents. A well-weathered saddle and horse quilt perch beneath barn-inspired ceiling beams, so striking that they read as a single piece of sculpture.

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Anthony Baratta LLC

In a more traditional home, these would be hunting prints. Horse images make for a pleasant surprise and include a note of gentleman’s-farm posh to this grand foyer.

Equestrian Chic
Trend Alert: A Horse Is a Horse, Of Course

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