Farmhouse Style Explained
With a nod to the past, but firmly planted in the present, farmhouse-style home design offers a trendy way to achieve a timeless setting.
And despite having common characteristics—like the use of neutral colors and organic materials—today’s farmhouse style also incorporates modern updates, making it an appealing option for all types of homeowners.
If your living room is in need of revamping, incorporate a few changes—open concept here, barn doors there—for a look that’s far from one-size-fits-all.
Open-Concept Farmhouse Living Room
Farmhouse style doesn’t always have to look rustic. In fact, many homeowners are taking turn-of-the-century homes and opening up the interior to shed natural light into their space.
This room by Jennifer Robbins Interiors shows how an open concept living and dining area, complete with a glass-paned wall, modernizes a traditional closed-in approach.
Comfortable furnishings, industrial light fixtures, and vertical shiplap give this space a farmhouse feel that’s not over-the-top.
Eclectic Farmhouse Living Room
Farmhouse style is very adaptable and can be combined easily with many other home decor trends.
An art deco mirror and cellular shades pair well with horizontal shiplap and a Persian rug to make this living room by Judith Balis Interiors both traditional and transitional. Add a modern sofa and coffee table for a clean look that’s appealing to the eye.
Reclaimed Wood Ceiling Living Room
Incorporating organic construction materials into an interior space allows the room to speak for itself. This room by Kelly and Co. Design shows how to use farmhouse construction elements in a country stone cottage.
Embracing the original attributes of the space—like the exposed stone wall and wood ceiling—allows a combination of textures for the eye to land on. Then, simple decor and furnishings modernize the space.
Traditional Farmhouse Living Room
Farmhouse style is all about relaxed simplicity and comfort. So, you don’t have to go big with blown out ceilings and expensive materials to nail the look.
This room, designed by Bartlett, opts for comfort over an open, airy feel. The low ceilings bring warmth to a cold winter evening and relaxed, yet elegant, furnishings offer a “sink right in” feel.
The updated barn board fireplace, complete with reclaimed timbers, further accentuates the traditional nature of the room.
Monochromatic Farmhouse Living Room
A contemporary-style living room can be transformed into a chic farmhouse retreat by incorporating shiplap around the fireplace, reclaimed timber beams, and tonal furniture and accessories.
In fact, almost any room (yes, even those with an 80s vibe) can be given farmhouse flair by adding just a few details. This modern farmhouse living room from designer Sophie Metz is both sophisticated and comfortable.
Industrial Farmhouse Living Room
The simplicity of farmhouse style can quite easily take an industrial turn. This living room from Risinger & Co. allows the room’s architectural details to stand out, and then complements them with modern furniture, metal barstools, and an exposed stove pipe.
The cowhide rug adds a Western feel, as a seamless blend of two styles presents itself.
Contemporary Farmhouse Living Room
Despite the nostalgia often associated with farmhouse style, lovers of contemporary design can certainly still take advantage of its best characteristics.
Take this contemporary farmhouse living room by Northworks Architects and Planners, for example. The tongue-and-groove ceilings say “farmhouse,” but the furniture and the open concept space are anything but.
New Construction Farmhouse Living Room
A house doesn’t have to be historic to embrace the traditional farmhouse style. This newly built home designed by Tom Meany Architect incorporates hallmarks like a beamed ceiling, paned windows, and a large stone fireplace to create a modern home with the comforts of a classic farmhouse.
Bring the Outdoors In
A connection to nature is a recurring theme in modern farmhouse design. This living room from Joseph Farrell Architecture features a foldable wall of windows to meld the interior space with the outdoor patio.
Organic elements like the jute rug and live plants further represent a living area that feels free and unrestricted by blurring the in with the out.
Since wood was used so heavily in farmhouses of the past, shiplap paneling is one of the easiest ways to bring the style into new homes.
When installing, choose boards that have nicks and scrapes, as they replicate the look of longtime use and evoke a sense of history. In this room by Renew Properties, the stained wood fireplace mantle offsets the shiplap to create a contrasting feel.
Add Farmhouse Color
A light and fresh color palette is always a good choice for farmhouse-style rooms. But you don’t always have to go white. Instead, incorporate pale blue into spaces through mantle and bookcase accents.
Buffalo Lumber exemplifies this color choice by combining it beautifully with white furniture and light wood finishes. Light grey and warm oatmeal also work well for a simple and uncomplicated look.
Incorporate Authentic Features
Part of what makes farmhouse style so appealing is the comfort that comes from pieces of history. So why limit them?
This living room is filled with antiquey embellishments like distressed furniture, traditional farm chairs, and chicken wire cabinets. Browse estate sales and flea markets for the real deal, or shop for new accessories that embrace the farmhouse aesthetic.
Add a Tufted Sofa
Who says farmhouse living can’t offer a hint of luxury? By playing with the decor, you can stage a traditional room to look both comfortable and tailored.
This farmhouse living room by The Source Room pairs classic elements with an elegant tufted sofa for an unexpected (but very welcome) sophistication.
Use Barn Doors
Barn doors give any space a traditional farm feel. Plus, they’re great space savers for small rooms and can easily partition an open-concept floor plan. In some cases, two barn doors are even better than one!
This unusually shaped room, courtesy of Edward Ira Schachner, uses barn doors to compliment the fireplace and reinforce the farmhouse look.