Farmhouse kitchens are modeled after the kitchens of rural America. These kitchens are not only spacious and homey, they also have a rustic and homey feel.
Farmhouse kitchens are typically white or off-white. But, there is no rule written in stone for what colors you can use.
If white or off-white is not your style, you can always go with cabinets or walls that are in muted shades of gray, blue, green, or yellow. For the traditional farmhouse feel, you will want to stick to neutral colors.
If you want to be wild, you can break the mold with dark colored cabinets or walls—just make sure to keep everything else in line with the farmhouse style.
Another way to bring more color into the farmhouse kitchen is to have two-toned cabinets. Stick to white base and wall cabinets but have the island or a hutch in another color. Or you can select a backsplash that has some color to it.
In farmhouse kitchens, the most popular style of cabinet doors is Shaker style. The Shaker style is a classic, simple design made up of straight lines. The doors have recessed panels with minimal embellishments. Shaker style cabinets were originally built by Shakers. This was a religious community in the 1800s. The design of their cabinets and other furniture reflect their mantra for a simple life.
A distressed look will add some more character to the plain Shaker cabinet style, and it will enhance the vintage, farmhouse feel.
Freestanding cabinetry and hutches are another feature of farmhouse style. If you do not want freestanding cabinets or hutches, why not try bun feet on your base cabinets. The bun feet will bring the cabinets up off the floor and provide a creative flair.
Another common feature of the farmhouse style kitchen is open shelving. There are two ways to use open shelving. One way is by mounting shelves onto the walls where typically there would be wall cabinets. The other way is by using doorless wall cabinets.
If you absolutely must have doors on your wall cabinets, there is another way to achieve the open shelving look. You can use glass panels or chicken wire inserts on your wall cabinet doors. The glass or chicken wire will provide a look that is similar to the farmhouse style’s open shelving.
A farmhouse—or apron style—sink is a must have in a farmhouse kitchen. Thick walled, white fireclay farmhouse sinks are the most popular and durable. If a white porcelain-looking sink is not your style, farmhouse sinks are available in several other materials.
Butcherblock or Wooden Countertops
While a wooden or butcherblock countertop is not mandatory in a farmhouse kitchen, it will provide a classic and natural look. Wood or butcherblock countertops are biodegradable, and they come in a wide array of styles depending on the species, color/stain, and grain orientation (face grain, edge grain, or end grain.) The hardness of the wood varies on the species.
To learn about other kitchen countertop materials, click here.
To add some texture to your walls or ceiling—along with a vintage look—why not try interior cladding? Shiplap, beadboard, or reclaimed wood can be installed either horizontally or vertically to the kitchen walls or ceiling. It can even be installed on the back of the island.
As its name indicates, shiplap was once used to cover the exterior of ships. It was also used to construct homes and outbuildings. Lately it has become a popular choice for interior wall and ceiling finishes.
Beadboard is a type of paneling that first became popular in the 1800s. It has distinctive grooves that create a unique look that is typically associated with farmhouses.
Reclaimed wood is processed lumber that is taken from its original application and then reused as something else. Most reclaimed lumber comes form old barns, factories, and warehouses.
Exposed Ceiling Beams
Exposed ceiling beams are a common feature in farmhouse style kitchens. The wood beams provide a rustic, natural element in the kitchen. If you do not want to expose the structural wooden beams of your house, you can fake the look with reclaimed wood or decorative beams.
Freestanding Island and/or Extra-Large Table
Freestanding kitchen islands are not attached to the rest of the kitchen cabinetry. It can be made to match the other cabinetry, or it can have its own unique look. Mass produced freestanding islands are available. Or you can upcycle one using an old table, an antique sewing machine base, or another piece of furniture.
A big, wood table that serves as an eating place and as a food prep area is a must in farmhouse kitchen.
Last, but not least, is farmhouse kitchen décor. If you want to stick to the classic farmhouse look, you better start raiding the local antique shops and flea markets. Or you can just search for reproductions online. Either way, you will want to stock up on vintage-looking signs, old vases and mason jars, antique light fixtures, and other rustic-style decor.
Plaid, gingham (checkered fabric) and toile (linen or cotton fabric with vintage patterns or pastoral/historical scenes printed on it) are all great materials to use as curtains, tablecloths, and placemats.
Shakespeare Home Improvement Co. is Lancaster County’s premier kitchen remodeling company. We offer beautiful custom kitchen remodeling featuring StarMark Cabinetry. If you are interested in remodeling your kitchen, give us a call to set up a free estimate. To view pictures from our past kitchen projects, click here.