Lately we've started to see signs of what it means to be "new traditional," "new pink," "new elegance," and even "new Portland." But what 'bout country? What happened to country? Well, gee golly gosh, it's a good thing Country Living has come kicking along. After all, this is the era of existentialism for shelter media! And Country Living would be having a tough time keeping up with the Joneses if it, too, didn't present some sort of new self. The fresh-faced March issue, which hits stands next week, seems aims to define the "new country," and, luckily for us, breaks it all down in a "What's Country Now" feature. We pulled 20 important tips; consider them a user's guide:
20: Embrace the concept of "heirloom gardening."
19: Recycled wood. Use it. Particularly if it's from "historic, demolition-bound Kentucky buildings."
18: Use quilts as wallhangings. Wisconsin artist Leah Evans turns aerial images into textiles.
17: Make sure your milk stools are painted with milk paint.
16: Etsy! Of course. Country Living recommends buying reclaimed-wood furniture, pastel ceramics, and screen-printed dish towels on the site.
15: If you don't already have one, get a backyard. (Alternately, get a rooftop.) Fill it with chicken coops, and hire chicken caretakers Just Us Hens to watch them while you're at work.
14: Stop hating on L.L. Bean and Lands' End, and pledge your love for both by pairing a plaid L.L. Bean dress with a sailboat-inspired Lands' End belt.
13: Keep on listenin' to Dave Matthews! He owns a 1,000-acre farm in Virginia that donates 25 percent of each harvest to soup kitchens and food banks. He also produces his own chardonnay, so double bonus points for becoming friends with him.
12: Buy the following, all from Canvas: "cutting boards made by Amish woodworkers in Ohio," "throw pillows stitched by a women's collaborative in New Mexico," and "a dining table built from cedar planks that once formed a New York City water tower." Silently detest all furniture made in a factory.
11: Eat at restaurants that serve rabbit.
10: Snow cones are fine, but they should be slow-food snow cones sweetened with maple syrup, agave, or cane sugar—like those from Fresher than Fresh.
9: Use organic beauty products.
8: Whatever you do, do not buy a McMansion! Instead, opt for a 400-square-foot cottage from Tiny Texas Houses, which will run you about $32K.
7: Listen to the Zac Brown Band, wear Lucchese boots, and drink Bombshell Blonde beer. All at once.
6: Shop at Billy Reid, a well-mannered high-end men's store that happens to also sell women's clothing.
5: Visit Animal, a terrific restaurant in Hollywood, and order the biscuits and gravy topped with foie gras. Delicious!
4: Don't let fruit go bad—do as Rachel Saunders, of Blue Chair Fruit Company, and preserve it. (Or just go buy her jams and marmalades.)
3: Add the following musicians to your iPod: George Jones, Bobbie Gentry, Loretta Lynn, Ray Charles, and Sammi Smith.
2: Buy antiques wrapped in zinc from father-daughter furniture duo Barry and Scarlett Scales.
1: Hang art that depicts Windsor chairs—but don't actually have the chairs themselves.
And, of course, hold fast to the believe that pie can change the world.
· Sneaking a Peek at Trad Home's 20 "New Traditional" Designers [Curbed National]
· Sneak Peeks: Rosy Glow, Pinkish Hue in March House Beautiful [Curbed National]
· Margaret Russell Shares More Intel About the New Arch Digest [Curbed National]
· Wanna Make it in Portland? Here are 10 Easy Steps to Indie Bliss [Curbed National]
· Country Living [official site]