modern farmhouse

What is the “Modern Farmhouse” Style?

We’ve all seen those hyper-unrealistic and slightly hypnotic home improvement shows that govern HGTV, such as “Fixer Upper”, “Property Brothers”, and “Flip or Flop”. These shows make renovations and remodels look quick an easy, when often that isn’t the case. Remodels and additions take lots of time and patience, and unexpected problems can easily occur.

However, every once in a while, those shows will stumble upon a new home trend that blows up in the home design industry. One such trend is the “modern farmhouse” style popularized by Fixer Upper star Joanna Gaines. This style mixes traditional farmhouse aspects such as shiplap walls and rustic design elements with a polished, whitewashed finish and minimalist touches.

What Is Modern Farmhouse?gray themed living room

Years ago, the term “modern farmhouse” would have evoked the image of a newly built farmhouse made to appear old and weathered. Today, the definition is more element-based than structural; any house can be transformed into the modern farmhouse style.

The most recognizable aspect of the modern farmhouse style is the famed shiplap accent wall. You’ve probably seen plenty of design show hosts screeching about it on the Internet – yes, people are putting old wood all over their houses for aesthetic appeal. To an extent, it can be a tasteful addition to a home with rustic styling components, such as light-toned wide-planked floors and barn-style light fixtures.

While this look can get predictable and tired fairly quickly, there are ways to spice up your design. Choosing unique décor pieces, such as modern brushed bronze hanging light fixtures mixed into an otherwise rustic kitchen or a funky coffee table amidst a shiplap-clad living room.

Where Did Modern Farmhouse Style Come From?

Before the modern farmhouse trend was a common style, the comparable trend was called “shabby chic”. The whitewash, vintage, wood-heavy styles are similar, though shabby chic tends to run more on the feminine side than modern farmhouse. Lighter tones and ornate marble backsplashes governed the shabby chic universe, while modern farmhouse can almost border on “hunter chic” when designed to include animal pelt rugs and antler décor pieces.

Now, the modern farmhouse style certainly wasn’t started solely by Joanna Gaines and her merry band of renovating minstrels. However, her TV presence certainly helped the trend catch on much more quickly. The trend technically began in 2004 (which is when search engines began tracking the phrase), but the sharp spike began in 2016 when Joanna Gaines popularized the trend through her hit TV show Fixer Upper. It’s amazing what a little exposure can do to bring shiplap back from the dead and into millions of homeowners’ hearts!

Whether you’re looking for a renovation of your old space or want to build a brand-new one, Norman Graham is here to help! Even if you’re not looking for that modern farmhouse vibe, we can still create your dream space. Ready to get started? Fill out our online form or give us a call at 717-656-7336. We look forward to hearing from you!