The Modern Farmhouse: What Does This Mean?

The modern farmhouse look has deep roots in the country and rustic aesthetic, but interpreted according to today's taste with clean lines and a contemporary edge. The term originated as a type of architecture characterized by white board and batten siding and gabled metal roofs. The term has now taken over interiors around the country to designate a style that's both contemporary and rustic, but always low maintenance.

Here are a few elements that define the Modern Farmhouse look. Contrary to its darker and more traditional counterpart, the modern farmhouse features a light color palette comprised primarily of whites and warm neutrals or muddy tones. Wall paneling, wood beams and even hardwood floors are still present as they are in traditional farmhouses, but they are most often painted or whitewashed instead of left in their natural state. In the kitchen and the bathroom, timeless finishes are preferred: classic white subway tile backsplashes, wooden countertops and white porcelain farmhouse sinks are all staples of the modern farmhouse look.

Fittings and accessories from faucets to hardware are most often kept in more rounded traditional styles.

Lighting is often kept minimal. Industrial styles such as schoolhouse or barn light pendants and sconces replace intricate chandeliers.

Furniture in the modern farmhouse is often a healthy mix of modern rustic staples such as clean-lined white linen sofas and iconic modern leather or metal chairs with more traditional heirlooms such as weathered farmhouse dining tables and turned leg furniture.

Textiles in the modern farmhouse are often sturdy and retain a traditional feel: think flatweave or cowhide rugs, patterned quilts, wool blankets and blanket print textiles.

As far as décor goes, wire baskets, white porcelain dishes and large-scale contemporary art are all elements that provide the rustic country look with a contemporary modern edge. The result is a distinct blend of contemporary rural architecture, industrial influences and traditional farmhouse antiques.