11 Elements of Farmhouse Style

This popular style has hit the city, the beach, and everywhere in between. We talked to three influencers with different aesthetics to learn how they’ve interpreted the look in their homes.

Farmhouse Style House from Chrissy Serrano
Serrano chose Sherwin-Williams Extra White (SW 7006) for the siding, brick, and trim and Uncertain Gray (SW 6234) for the shutters. Chrissy Serrano

Modern Coastal Farmhouse Style

Homeowner: Chrissy Serrano; @chrissymarieblog

Chrissy Serrano and her husband, Jose, built themselves a three-story farmhouse-style home on an urban lot in Durham, North Carolina. “It’s such a versatile look,” explains Serrano, who also admits that she loved the building process so much that it “lit something inside of me.” So she started sharing her inspiration with others.

Bring In Seaside Touches

“I love the fresh feeling you get at the beach,” she says. “Incorporating coastal elements into a farmhouse gives an unexpected effect. It can be as small as the blue undertones of a gray paint.”

Say “Yes” to Shiplap

“I want it in every room! Paint it any color, stain it, or leave it raw,” Serrano says. Shiplap adds charm, so you don’t have to do as much decorating.

Embrace Cozy; Banish Clutter

“I invite warmth and character into rooms using soft fabrics, collected pieces, and textures like exposed brick and shiplap,” she says. Maintain simplicity by choosing a neutral palette.

Flood with Sunlight

They put in extra windows on the south side of the house, so there’s lots of sun even on cloudy days. “Coming from a previous home that was dark (like most old farmhouses), I believe natural light is good for the soul,” Serrano says.

Farmhouse Style Bedroom from Chrissy Serrano
Chrissy Serrano

Keep Kids In Mind

As a mom of four, I must have a family-centric house with a sit-and-stay-awhile feel,” she says. In the open living-and-kitchen area, they can all be together without being right on top of each other. “The wide front porch is my favorite spot,” she says. “We sit in our rocking chairs and take advantage of great views of the neighborhood.”

English Country Farmhouse Style

Homeowner: Jenny Bohannon; @tallwoodcountryhouse

This 2,700-square-foot home, lovingly named Tallwood, is a 1960s build that sits on 6 acres in Northern Virginia’s horse country. “We are doing our best to preserve, restore, and revive the fine elements of the house while renovating it,” says Bohannon.

Paint the Floors

“My mom and I spent three days on the checkerboard floor in the kitchen, but it was worth it,” she says. “It’s my favorite part of the house and essential to the old English Country look.”

Make Room for Pets

She looks to historic farmhouses in England for inspiration. “There may be ducks and chickens running around during the day, but at night there’s fine china on the table,” says Bohannon, the proud owner of 12 Pekin ducks, eight French guinea hens, two Labrador retrievers, and two cats.

Cultivate Tiny Spaces

This house doesn’t have an open floor plan. “Instead, I treat each room as a bit of a discovery that’s rich with layers of art, wallpapers that are original to the house, lighting, and antiques,” she says. “Entering each space should feel like opening a jewel box.”

Remember Old Is New Again

“Our real estate agent thought this house was a teardown because everyone who toured it was overwhelmed by the state of the kitchen,” she recalls. “But I was reminded of an estate sale I’d visited years ago. There was a small kitchen among all of these formal rooms, and it was lovely. That was my inspiration for Tallwood.”

Traditional Farmhouse Style

Homeowner: Brittany J. Smith; @thorn_cove_abode

“A farmhouse is a place that has a squeaky front door and worn floors and oozes a welcoming comfort,” says Smith, who grew up in older homes. She couldn’t convince her husband to take on renovating a historic property, so they compromised and built a new old house in Chesnee, South Carolina.

Celebrate Authenticity

“Our exterior is very similar to my grandparents’ home,” she says. “I don’t look to modern trends much. Instead, I think about the old farmhouses that I pass by on country roads.”

Design for How You Live

Balancing comfort and function is key. “Every room was created with our family’s specific needs in mind,” says Smith.

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