9 / 15 / 2020

KTS Group: What is Modern Farmhouse Chic?

What is Modern Farmhouse Chic?

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What is Modern Farmhouse Chic and why is it a hot home design style trend for SWFL new home buyers? Architecture is best defined as an evolution of tried and true older techniques reused in current times with the application of creative and innovative alteration to either transform the practices into a new style or to employ enhancements to elevate what once was, adding panache and flair.  And right now, this definition is coming to life with a hot design trend – Modern Farmhouse Chic – that is heating up in Southwest Florida, and at KTS Group, we have mastered the logistics in perfecting all that this style demands.

The style, paying homage to the farmhouse barns of yesteryear, has been ramped up and wildly popularized by television design-guru Joanna Gaines, whose goal is to create a home to be lived in and one in which memories are made. The over-the-top sales of her Magnolia Home décor and goods line prove the trend is here to stay.

So, what is the appeal of this style, and why is it hitting with the new home buyer who wants builders to cozy up to their pick? The keyword is “cozy.” Done with traditional, stiff, formal, Tuscan-inspired, dark-colored palettes, today’s modern woman (and men) want comfort. Unafraid to kick up their heels on a vintage-inspired cassock or deep-cushioned sofa, they want to live in their homes, not just create a showpiece. Remember the days (or maybe you’re lucky enough to have never known) when grandma would have plastic-covered furniture pieces that eerily crackled whenever anyone sat? Or, remember the sacred formal living room used once yearly at best and reserved for who knows what and who knows who?

What people want now with this style is to have the warmth of the old world of the farmhouse, but to have the modernism of technology and the use of exotic materials. Today’s modern couple wants to entertain in a space that is unique to their personality, oozing with comfort and screaming with a relaxed, laid-back vibe. Neutral tones, in furnishings that beg to be stroked, encourage cuddling, and enjoyed is driving this trend. Dining tables that finished in reclaimed wood – some with a history are at the ready to host a family gathering. It’s a nod to the primal need for organic living, a simpler time, an unhurried pace. A blend of the warmth of rustic charm with the clean lines of a modern spin makes this trend so inviting.

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The beginning – farmhouse inspiration

From my viewpoint, when this style started coming back over five years ago, it was being modified from the old style of farmhouse barns. When I was traveling to Minnesota two years ago, it was just getting started, but looked much different from what I found in Michigan and Tennessee. Today, in many areas of Atlanta, the style is popular with its Southern spin. In Naples, manipulation of the farmhouse style, termed the “Coastal Transitional” movement landed over seven years ago and has been gaining traction ever since.


Today’s version – something old is new again

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Designers are finding inspiration for this style coming from everywhere right now; there is no single source since it is being tapped from markets, country-wide. Inspiration is mostly coming from California and Texas-style houses. The old-world farm styles have been twisted, and the heavy dark woods that were so prevalent are now replaced with clean drywall in a wash of white finishes.

The style is heavy with a huge mix of the materials once used, such as structural wood beams, rock-faced walls, wood siding, with more current materials like large format matte-finished tile, clean smooth drywall with light color paints, and floor to ceiling full glass walls that allow an enormous amount of light into the new designs.

There is a small movement of using burnt wood for exterior and interior use, resulting in a black and darkened look. This technique has been around for ages, but the use of it in this manner makes the design interesting and edgy.

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Finishing the Look

Modern farmhouse chic – it’s a little bit industrial, but can still peek out from glimmers of glam, bathe rooms in washes of white in everything from wall color, to bedding, to accent pieces. It can adorn ceilings with industrial style or candle lamp style chandeliers with metal accents, and customize kitchens with the use of apron sinks and vintage fixtures.

Floor plans offer wide-open spaces that beg for minimalist décor with vintage pieces reimagined with a modern flourish and exposed reclaimed wood beams forming a canopy of style in bedrooms, living areas, and even baths.

Accessorizing is easy as less is more. While metal offers a contrast in clocks, railings, and in the aforementioned lighting applications, stone, both outdoors and indoors, on countertops and kitchen flooring provide the yin to the yang of towering vases and baskets made of softer textiles like flax linen, and patterned décor touches. And the color du jour? Look to nature to inspire with the use of various dimensions of blue, a bold navy to grass green. You are limited only by your imagination.


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