Designer Tips

DEFINE YOUR STYLE: Classic Farmhouse + Modern Farmhouse

Can you define your style? It can be easy to name off colors you love and narrow down your favorite pieces of furniture, but can you give your style a name? Throughout a series of blog posts, we will be diving into various design styles to help you learn how to define your own personal style. First up, is your style classic farmhouse or modern farmhouse?

What is Classic Farmhouse?

This style goes way back. Back to early American history when the early settlers wanted to create homes that were sturdy, practical and simplified. People often refer to this style as rustic, vintage or country, and while it does contain some of the same characteristics of these styles, it leans more on the minimalistic side with cleaner lines and not as many accessories. It is cozy without being overdone. It is using vintage pieces while still being sophisticated.

What details do you see in this style?

Tons of Natural Wood

This is because wood was very accessible to the early settlers, so they used a lot of it. Think wood floors, butcher block countertops, wood panelled-walls and exposed wood beams.

Features Vintage Pieces

This could be furniture and/or decor. Usually they look weathered, worn and imperfect. Galvanized metal items usually scream farmhouse because they feel vintage and old. Wrought iron lighting is super popular too.

Useful Apron Sinks

Usually these are white and porcelain like the olden days but many varieties are available today. Nothing says farmhouse kitchen quite like a white, apron-front sink.

Reusing Old Architecture

Early settlers didn’t have a lot of money, so they were great at using materials and things they already had. This is a great characteristic of Classic Farmhouse style because it teaches us to salvage items like shutters, windows, corbels and doors so nothing goes to waste while incorporating the vintage/weathered look at the same time.

Neutral Color Schemes

Think grays, beiges, whites, creams and browns. Other colors can be adding in as accents but only as pops against a neutral base. This is a key to keeping with the minimalistic and sophisticated feel of classic farmhouse.

Using Comfortable Furniture

The key to this style is comfort. The seating is always practical and cozy. Large furniture works well in this style too because the overall decor is kept to a minimal so the big items don’t make the home feel overcrowded.

Source: Koenig Building



What is Modern Farmhouse?

This style is basically the updated version of Classic Farmhouse. It takes all the characteristics from Classic Farmhouse and adds in a few modern and contemporary pieces to make it look a little bit more new. The style still looks as though it has evolved over a long period of time and full of comfortable and practical pieces just like Classic Farmhouse.

What details do you see in this style?

Variety of Natural Materials

Natural wood is still used a lot in this style but it also is balanced out with other natural textures such as rattan, sisal, cotton and stone.

Elements that Mix and Match

Using vintage furniture next to a modern piece of furniture creates a beautiful contrast that is the exact definition of Modern Farmhouse style. This applies to textures and decor as well. Think reclaimed wood next to stainless steel for a huge contrast.

Minimalist Styling

Classic Farmhouse style keeps it decor at a minimal but Modern Farmhouse takes it just a step further in the minimalist direction. You will see less decor in a room to let each piece breathe and have its own moment.

Unique Lighting

Most lighting in this style is either modern or mid-century modern because it is a big statement against the other Classic Farmhouse elements in the room. Switching up the lighting in a room is also one of the first updates people make when transitioning from Classic Farmhouse to Modern Farmhouse style.

Source: Katie Hackworth


Which style are you?

Some people can easily fit themselves into one category and some love and use a little bit of all different styles. We hope this gives you a better look inside Classic and Modern Farmhouse styles, taught you how to distinguish between the two and what details you can use to better achieve your desired style.

This post may contain affiliate links, meaning at no additional cost to you, we will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. All opinions and recommendations are our own.



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