What is the Modern Farmhouse Style?
Modern farmhouse decor is all about blending the old with the new to create a relaxing, inviting space. You'll see an emphasis on airy aesthetics, natural textures, and bright neutral palettes combined with clean lines and stainless steel details.
"Modern farmhouse style blends a minimal contemporary style with what most know as a traditional country style," explained Anna Franklin.
Standard features of modern farmhouse decor include:
- Traditional country elements like shiplap wall paneling and shaker-style cabinetry
- Natural materials like wool, cotton, linen, wood, rattan, and metal
- Sliding barn doors, industrial light fixtures, and other classic country accents
- Cozy elements like soft throw pillows and warm blankets
- Minimalist-inspired furniture layouts and clean lines
- Bright, neutral color palettes
"The modern farmhouse style is a tailored, updated version of the early 20th century American farmhouse. The homes of that time and place were pretty spare by nature because the people living in them were hardscrabble farmers. They lived lives born of necessity, not ornamentation. That's not to say that spare can't be beautiful, though — a simple, stripped-down aesthetic can actually be very calming," Mark Williams and Niki Papadopoulos told Living Cozy.
15 Examples of Modern Farmhouse Decor Done Right
Collecting decor inspiration is one of the best ways to decide how you want your space to look. You don't need experience with decor to identify an area or element you like, and once you've found the looks you want, it's easier to recreate them. Here are 15 of our favorite modern farmhouse decor pics to get you started (or, y'know, add to your collection).
1. This Dining Space with Ceiling Detailing
"Pay attention to the ceiling when designing a modern farmhouse space," recommended Mark Williams and Niki Papadopoulos. "An ordinary sheetrock ceiling, devoid of depth, shadow, or character, is truly a wasted opportunity. You can add a little interest to the room with a beam detail, a bead-board, texture, or even use matte-finish, driftwood-toned plank detailing across the ceiling."
While traditional country homes were rooted around practicality, many of them featured handmade details in every room. However, many modern homes have moved away from quality craftsmanship and into the realm of convenience. As such, adding a bit of detailing can make a massive difference in your home's aesthetic appeal and character.
2. This Kitchen with Shaker Style Cabinets
"Typically, the modern farmhouse style begins with a palette of pure white, and then elements of contrast and texture are carefully layered in to create interest and a sense of scale. Shaker style cabinets and white subway tile are often associated with this style, but utilized in a clean and modern way," said Mark Williams and Niki Papadopoulos.
For those who aren't up for a total cabinetry makeover, you can upgrade flat panel cabinet doors to shaker-style ones if you'd prefer a DIY project. Sometimes small changes are just what you need while saving up for more extensive renovation projects.
3. This Living Room with Exposed Beams
"Exposed beams add both character and warmth to a space and are often found in farmhouses and barns," John Linden told Living Cozy.
The seemingly-small addition of exposed wood beams can transform an uninviting or dull space into something inviting with a ton of character. And since you can choose between raw wood, light- or dark-toned finishes, or painted beams, you can still make this architectural feature your own.
4. This Dining Space with Greenery
Modern farmhouse design draws inspiration from classic country living, and part of that was being connected with nature. As such, you'll see greenery and other natural elements throughout many modern farmhouse homes, creating an aesthetic that's modern and rustic at the same time.
"Incorporating natural elements like fresh flowers, greenery, and even fruits and vegetables is a great way to add a touch of nature to your home," added John Linden.
5. This Shiplap Entryway
"Shiplap is a staple in the farmhouse style, whether it be horizontal or vertical, white or painted," said Lena Plumlee.
A simple shiplap accent wall can give your entryway, kitchen, or living room a rustic farmhouse appeal. If you're the handy type, shiplap walls are a relatively easy DIY project compared to most other home renovations. They're also an excellent option for fixer-uppers with ugly or outdated walls in one or more areas of the home.
6. This Space with a Vintage Rug
"Add a vintage rug," recommends Anna Franklin. "Similar to a reclaimed wood dining table, a vintage rug will continue to age well and will add a touch of softness to the space. For a modern farmhouse feel, look for those that are white, cream, or gray with touches of black."
If you're worried about finding the right rug, don't be — the modern farmhouse design style works well with most traditional rugs. And for those who can seem to choose between their favorite area rugs, why not spread them throughout multiple rooms for a cohesive aesthetic?
7. This Bedroom with a Barn-Style Door
Sliding barn doors have been popping up everything in farmhouse interiors, but they're particularly popular in farmhouse bedrooms. These accents look exceptionally stylish when they're painted white with today's popular X-shape molding, bringing this classic farmhouse element into the modern age. These sliding doors also add simple functionality to your space, setting your home apart from the rest.
If a literal barn-style door isn't your thing, you can still bring this look into your space. For example, you might DIY a barn door bookcase or find a barn door-style accent cabinet to inject your area with a dose of barn-inspired style.
8. This Dining Room with a Reclaimed Wood Table
"Incorporate a reclaimed wood farmhouse style dining table," suggested Anna Franklin. "This is often a statement piece of a dining room and will drive home the farmhouse aesthetic. The reclaimed wood adds an antique feel to the piece and will age beautifully over time. Another way to enhance the farmhouse feel is to select a piece with industrial elements, such as black hardware details on the tabletop or the base."
Regardless of what the rest of your space looks like, if you can add some reclaimed wood and industrial flair to the room, you'll start to see a modern farmhouse vibe. This could be your dining table in the living room, the headboard in your bedroom, or your dining table perched atop a cozy and oh-so-modern faux fur rug.
9. This Simple Kitchen
The modern farmhouse kitchen is one of the most popular ways to show off the simplicity of the style. A bright neutral palette, natural textures, and classic architectural features can make any kitchen cozier, especially if you include farmhouse furniture and design ideas.
"The beauty of the modern farmhouse style is its spare elegance," said Mark Williams and Niki Papadopoulos. "A simple palette of white and natural wood tones, punctuated carefully with high contrast elements of black or dark pewter, can compose a quietly beautiful space."
10. This Rustic Dining Room
Rustic elements are a must in the dining room. Whether you're lucky enough to have an expansive dining room or want to repurpose your kitchen island or countertop into a dining table, you won't find many better (or simpler) ways to capture the modern farmhouse style.
"Adding in a little rustic texture, like natural stone and vintage furniture and accessory items, to this immaculate palette always adds interest and charm to complete that farmhouse look," commented Mark Williams and Niki Papadopoulos.
"Incorporating rustic elements is also important," added Anna Franklin. "Instead of adding faux-distressed elements, opt for wooden, antique furniture that shows its age. It will continue to age beautifully and add authenticity to the rustic feel."
11. This Bright and Roomy Kitchen
Modern farmhouse spaces shine when they have room to breathe, especially if you can let in lots of natural light to keep the area bright and airy. Eye-catching architectural elements like high ceilings and shaker-style cabinetry work beautifully with today's open floorplans and clean, modern lines.
"Incorporate straight lines and interesting angles with larger elements like lighting, artwork, and dining chairs, while keeping the color palette and overall textiles earthy and simple," Amber Dunford recommended.
12. This Dining Room with Industrial Accents
Industrial metal accents frequently pop up in modern farmhouse decor, and they fit seamlessly with this earthy, natural look. When paired with rustic textures like exposed wood beams, industrial decor can enhance the rustic appeal and give your space more character.
For example, metal light fixtures are a common choice as they create textural interest and contrast, making the space look cozier and more inviting. Alternately, you might try industrial-style wall decor or even a small brick accent.
13. This Welcoming Living Room
Combining comfy furniture, natural textures, bright white walls, and large, open windows is a recipe for an inviting living room. And when you add a simple wood coffee table with a striking metal chandelier overhead, you're on your way to an Insta-worthy modern farmhouse living room.
"Livable comfort and family-centric themes are staples of this style, so a clean-lined sofa with overstuffed loose cushions should help you strike that balance between modern and country," Amber Dunford told Living Cozy.
14. This Living Room with Leather Accents
Living room decor is another common spot to bring in modern farmhouse design, and with good reason — you have a range of options to add a cozy country appeal. Leather accents work particularly well, as they have a distinct country appeal. The same is true for other elements like open shelving, live-edge wood, natural textures, and even modernized pieces like chic faux hide rugs.
"Textiles like leather and suede paired with industrial materials like iron and brass will add just the right amount of sternness to the lightheartedness of a country aesthetic," said Amber Dunford. "However, it's important not to overdo the style with anything too bright or sharp. Essentially, it's meant to feature traditional styles, natural, earthy colors, and bold metals incorporated with a modern twist."
15. This Living Room with Mixed Textures
"Modern farmhouse style is all about mixing and matching different materials to create an inviting and unique space. Try pairing wood with metal, stone with glass, or even different patterns and textures to add interest," John Linden told Living Cozy.
Any time you're playing with a design style born from two or more aesthetics, you have the option to bring in different textures and patterns to create depth in your space. Choose your additions carefully, and try adding a new texture if your room feels a bit lifeless or dull.
How to Get Started with Modern Farmhouse Decor
Interior design can feel overwhelming if you try to do everything at once, even for professionals. So instead, start with one room or element and a healthy dose of inspiration from around the web. And don‘t forget these three helpful tips from our experts!
1. Use Neutral Color Palettes
"Start with a neutral color palette, made up of white, gray, cream, and black," said Anna Franklin. "This will be the base of your design and is the color scheme you should follow throughout. Use the black as accents while utilizing the other neutral colors for larger aspects such as the walls. Another common element of the modern farmhouse style is exposed wood. Wood tones add warmth to this aesthetic and will add interest to the neutral color palette."
2. Stick To The Basics
"The first design priority for the modern farmhouse is 'Keep It Simple!' If you want to add a pop of color, do it with strength and intention. Pick just one strong color and use it to add excitement, but do that sparingly. Other colors can come from simple arrangements of fresh floral with plenty of greenery," Mark Williams and Niki Papadopoulos recommended.
3. Look for Simple Pairings
"When looking for decor for a modern country look, consider simple pairings like foraged branches in an earthenware vase or a sleek black pendant light over a weathered dining table," added April Dunford.