If you're thinking of building your dream farmhouse in the country, no doubt you want to know what elements are must-haves to create that classic look. It takes more than sculpted chickens, after all, to make a house into a home. Before you consult with your architect, it pays to know to generate some ideas in advance.
Below are seven classic farmhouse features which are a must to create the look you desire. Of course, your home is your castle, so feel free to modify these ideas to create your signature style. Consider the following elements when designing your dream farmhouse.
1. The Wraparound Porch
Anyone who has ever looked longingly at photos of farmhouses in the country can't help but be drawn to the long, wraparound porches perfect for sipping cool lemonade during the summer months. An absolute must for your own dream farmhouse is a front, back or full wraparound porch. You can paint it the traditional white or even go with a bright red color — just keep in mind, the bigger the porch, the better!
2. The Tin Roof (Not Rusted)
A metal roof offers unparalleled durability, so there's no need to worry about needing costly repairs five years down the road if you go with this option. Plus, with today's insulation, instead of an annoying din when rain hits, you'll enjoy the gentle drone of drops which lull you into a dream-filled sleep.
You don't really need to make like the B52's and build a love shack with a tin roof. Copper roofs add warm tones, and steel tones set off bright paint colors in dramatic contrast.
3. The Floor Beneath Your Feet
When it comes to farmhouse building, you can't go wrong with traditional hardwood. Not only does such flooring provide the perfect setting for a woven afghan or even a bearskin rug, but hardwood also offers a host of benefits.
Hardwood instantly enhances the value of your home as buyers pay more for hardwood floors than they would for carpet. Carpet collects pet dander and dust, so if you have pets and kids, your allergies will thank you for installing these floors. And with proper care, hardwood floors can last for generations — imagine your great-grandchildren treading the same floors you first step upon today.
4. Four Stone Walls
The Irish band Capercaillie once sang, "If it kills, I will surround myself with four stone walls." And perhaps it's fitting, as traditional Irish farmhouses often feature stone walls in the old country. Today, you can make your build easier with customizable precast concrete panels which come ready-to-assemble.
When it comes time to paint your interior, think warm, neutral tone like ecru, off-white and beige. These make the perfect backdrop for those colorful chicken sculptures you know you're dying to place everywhere, you country-chic diva, you.
5. Lots of Natural Light
Today's modern farmhouses feature lots of huge, picture windows, whether they're the bay variety or flat walls of natural light. Of course, this can mean allowing a substantial amount of heat and cold into your home without the right window covering. Still, you hardly want your farmhouse looking like a cave on sunny days.
Consider investing in window tint instead of heavy blackout curtains. Tinting insulates your window and keeps sunlight from fading fabrics on furniture as well as the wood on your floors.
6. And Iconic Lights for Nighttime
The sun does go down eventually, but luckily, interior lighting need not cost much in a farmhouse-style modern build. Start with old-fashioned gooseneck lighting for kitchens and bath — as a bonus, these are so much more flattering than overhead fluorescent lights. Add a touch of whimsy if you like with table lamps. There's nothing quite like the rustic feel of retreating to your den to read a tome by the light of an old-school bankers' lamp, for example.
7. Practicality Reigns Supreme
Most of all, keep your design practical. Open, airy kitchens with islands invite the family in to chat while prepping Sunday dinner. Open, airy breezeways connect she sheds and man caves to the main home while keeping snow and rain off your head. A mudroom allows you and the puppies to shake off the dirt, so you don't sully your floors.
Building the Modern Farmhouse of Your Dreams
With a bit of planning, it's easy to create an elegant dream modern farmhouse. By following the design elements above, you'll be welcoming yourself home in no time!