What started out as a simple way of life has become a beloved and timeless decorating style that is both functional and beautiful. Vintage Farmhouse Style has many elements, but we will talk about 10 of my favorite ways you can add it to your home.
1. Vintage Fabrics
Burlap, grain sack, linen, ticking, embroidery and lace are some of the most popular vintage fabrics. These are all easily made into pillows, slipcovers, or curtains to give any home a warm cozy feel. Back in the 1800s, these fabrics were used out of necessity and were materials the farmers already possessed, made themselves, or could get very inexpensively. I love the texture and interest these vintage fabrics bring to my farmhouse.
2. Natural Textures
Jute rugs, cane back chairs, and hand woven baskets are great ways to bring functional pieces made from nature into your design. The earthy hues and unique texture help bring dimension to any home. My husband thinks I’m crazy for always buying more baskets, but I think they are an attractive storage option that sure beats the “plastic tub” look. All Cami Grace’s toys are hidden in baskets and I love to use them for corralling food, laundry, art supplies, and even trash.
3. Light Color Palette
Back in the 1800s, the more pigmented the color the more expensive the paint would be. Farmers were not usually the most wealthy people so light color palette has become one of the key elements to the farmhouse style. When we moved to the farm we downsized from an over 2,000 sq. ft. home with 12 ft ceilings to a modest 1,450 sq ft home with 8 ft. ceilings. I think using light paint colors has helped us adjust to the smaller space by brightening up every room to make it feel much larger than it is.
4. Aged Patinas
Tarnished silver, yellowed paper, faded paintings, stained ironstone and chipped crystal are aged patinas found in vintage farmhouse design. These well-worn finishes tell a story that brings so much charm to your home. A beautifully aged piece from the past speaks to me. One of my absolute favorite things to do is to go antique shopping with my mom. I love to incorporate my finds into my decor.
5. Collected Vignettes
A collected-over-time look is what you are going for. Bringing together your favorite pieces and arranging them in a creative display gives the eye places to rest around a room. When hanging a collection on the wall, always place the larger item on the bottom so your arrangement doesn’t feel top heavy. I also group like things of varying sizes together in 3’s. Groupings of odd numbers are more interesting to look at than groupings of even numbers.
6. Distressed Finishes
Distressed furniture is something that just happened to the 1800s farmer. With hard everyday use chippy paint and rough wood were the reality. Today we spend lots of money or time to get pieces that have this look. The two-tone dimension of distressed furniture is a great way to add character to your home.
7. Farm Nostalgia
I think a hardworking farmer from the 1800s would laugh at how we romanticize his life. However, with all our technology and crazy schedules, there is a part in all of us that wishes we could go back to a simpler way of life. Whether it’s the farm sign I painted for our living room, or the old horse shoe we hung above the barn door, decorating with a nod to farm life adds charm. There is just something sweet about pieces that remind you of that old simpler time.
8. Rustic Elements
Exposing a turn-of-the-century brick chimney in our bathroom and hanging a barn door in our living room add a rustic touch to our home. Rough wood or stone from salvage are great ways to recycle and give your home beautiful natural texture at the same time.
9. Forgotten Quality
“They don’t built things like they used to,” is a phrase I didn’t fully appreciate till I owned a historic home. Our 1893 farmhouse retains its original solid pine floors and doors, cast iron and ceramic hardware, beadboard and elaborate moldings. These are aspects of an old farmhouse that could be added to your home, but unlike most things on my list may cost you a small fortune to replicate.
10. Handmade Pieces
From hand-sewn quilts to hand-carved toys, farmhouse design is most loved for its simple homemade feel. Though farmers didn’t have much in the way of money they were very resourceful with their talents and created one-of-a-kind pieces that could be enjoyed for generations. When decorating your home in vintage farmhouse style, adding a few well worn handmade pieces gives any space a homey feel.
No matter where you live you can give your home that “down on the farm” feel by adding a few elements of vintage farmhouse style. This design aesthetic is part of our nation’s history and has a timeless appeal. We hope you enjoyed our mini tour of our farmhouse and that you learned a bit about design.11