Pulling off a Modern Farmhouse Living Room
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Pulling off a Modern Farmhouse Living Room

Simplicity combined with rustic details is the key to this style.

By Tracy Kaler
Thu, Jan 20, 2022 11:17amGrey Clock 3 min

Clean lines paired with rustic details are the essence of a modern farmhouse living room. But what’s the appeal of this comfortable yet timeless look?

“From the untreated woods to natural materials, there’s something relaxed and inviting about this aesthetic,” said Amalia Graziani, principal at Noor Property Group in New York. “I like the warmth of this style. When done correctly, these spaces feel durable and lived in, but still fresh.”

We turned to a select group of design pros for suggestions on pulling off a modern farmhouse living room. Here’s what they recommend.

Include Reclaimed Materials

“The interior architecture of a modern farmhouse is not the same as that of a true historical farmhouse. Rather, the interior architecture is modernized by the simplicity of the trim, cabinetry design and other design features. The furniture of a modern farmhouse can then be antique or modern, but ideally a blend of both.

“Add reclaimed beams to a ceiling by simply bolting them to the existing structure. A farmhouse-style home typically utilizes beams with a hand-hewn look, which means they have a lot of chop marks. Bolts can be visible when you want an industrial look. You can buy reclaimed beams at salvage yards.

“Flooring in a modern marking is usually a fumed white oak or other character-grade flooring. Character-grade hardwood contains some naturally occurring knots and checks within the graining of the wood. These features provide a more rustic feel.”

— Cathy Purple Cherry of Purple Cherry Architects in Annapolis, Maryland

Pair Antique Elements With Updated Finishes

“A modern farmhouse typically pairs rustic, antique elements with sleek, updated materials and finishes. Most feature the classic pitched roofline and incorporate unfinished wood and natural textiles. Ideally, a modern take introduces more light. Using larger windows or lighter, more Scandinavian-style wood will modernize a space. A high-pitched roofline with vaulted ceilings is most emblematic of this style.

“The materials best suited to this aesthetic include oak or pine for paneling. I like to use unfinished wood beams with white beadboard. Iron is the most traditional metal option, but I love using brushed stainless alongside natural woods. In terms of stone choices, I’d recommend full stone granite for fireplaces and bluestone for floors.”

— Amalia Graziani, principal, Noor Property Group in New York

Select Streamlined Furnishings

“Selecting furniture that features clean lines and appears inviting and comfortable is key to creating a modern farmhouse living room. I gravitate towards sofas that use soft, luxurious, solid fabrics with thick down inserts. The best modern farmhouse looks use neutral fabrics and plenty of texture. Mix different textures to add modernity and differentiate from the traditional farmhouse style; leather paired with velvet; gold lighting or other metallic finishes with wood details on the walls or fireplace.

“Introducing color has to be done carefully if you’re hoping to achieve a modern farmhouse look. The key is to select one colour and carry it throughout the space, creating a monochromatic environment. This streamlined look creates a sophisticated palette for the farmhouse feel.

“I love to infuse abstract art into modern farmhouse living rooms. Pretty, soft landscapes also look beautiful here. If possible, go large on the art to add character and personality to the room.”

— Andi Morse, founder and principal designer, Morse Design in Atlanta

Go Light With Colors and Textures

“The modern farmhouse look has come a long way beyond just shiplap and rustic touches. I think in today’s day and age, where it has been translated over and over again, you need to strip it down to its core and try to capitalize on those elements. This would be a mix of casual ease, unexpected charm, mixed materials and an overall sense of lightness in both colors and textures.

“I would lean toward natural fiber rugs, like sisal or jute, or if you’re going to go with a pattern, perhaps one that is simple and not too busy, typically such as a larger floral print or simple stripe. Lighting is fun, but in a modern farmhouse, I would try and almost make it disappear. Glass shades and very clean and sleek hardware are the way to go.

“Consider a more patina look for your floor lamps, mirrors, or decor items, to lend that rustic charm without going over the top “shabby chic.” Pairing a wood lattice coffee table, for instance, with a more modern and sleek iron frame armchair with ivory cushions adds an element of contrast, which feels very farmhouse to me.”

— Interior designer Georgia Zikas in West Hartford, Connecticut

Reprinted by permission of Mansion Global. Copyright 2021 Dow Jones & Company. Inc. All Rights Reserved Worldwide. Original date of publication: Jan 19, 2022.


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Ray White’s chief economist outlines her predictions for housing market trends in 2024

By Bronwyn Allen
Tue, Nov 28, 2023 2 min

Ray White’s chief economist, Nerida Conisbee says property price growth will continue next year and mortgage holders will need to “survive until 2025” amid expectations of higher interest rates for longer.

Ms Conisbee said strong population growth and a housing supply shortage combatted the impact of rising interest rates in 2023, leading to unusually strong price growth during a rate hiking cycle. The latest CoreLogic data shows home values have increased by more than 10 percent in the year to date in Sydney, Brisbane and Perth. Among the regional markets, price growth has been strongest in regional South Australia with 8.6 percent growth and regional Queensland at 6.9 percent growth.

“As interest rates head close to peak, it is expected that price growth will continue. At this point, housing supply remains extremely low and many people that would be new home buyers are being pushed into the established market,” Ms Conisbee said. “Big jumps in rents are pushing more first home buyers into the market and population growth is continuing to be strong.”

Ms Conisbee said interest rates will be higher for longer due to sticky inflation. “… we are unlikely to see a rate cut until late 2024 or early 2025. This means mortgage holders need to survive until 2025, paying far more on their home loans than they did two years ago.”

Buyers in coastal areas currently have a window of opportunity to take advantage of softer prices, Ms Conisbee said. “Look out for beach house bargains over summer but you need to move quick. In many beachside holiday destinations, we saw a sharp rise in properties for sale and a corresponding fall in prices. This was driven by many pandemic driven holiday home purchases coming back on to the market.”

3 key housing market trends for 2024

Here are three of Ms Conisbee’s predictions for the key housing market trends of 2024.

Luxury apartment market to soar

Ms Conisbee said the types of apartments being built have changed dramatically amid more people choosing to live in apartments longer-term and Australia’s ageing population downsizing. “Demand is increasing for much larger, higher quality, more expensive developments. This has resulted in the most expensive apartments in Australia seeing price increases more than double those of an average priced apartment. This year, fewer apartments being built, growing population and a desire to live in some of Australia’s most sought-after inner urban areas will lead to a boom in luxury apartment demand.”

Homes to become even greener

The rising costs of energy and the health impacts of heat are two new factors driving interest in green homes, Ms Conisbee said. “Having a greener home utilising solar and batteries makes it cheaper to run air conditioning, heaters and pool pumps. We are heading into a particularly hot summer and having homes that are difficult to cool down makes them far more dangerous for the elderly and very young.”

More people living alone

For some time now, long-term social changes such as delayed marriage and an ageing population have led to more people living alone. However, Ms Conisbee points out that the pandemic also showed that many people prefer to live alone for lifestyle reasons. “Shorter term, the pandemic has shown that given the chance, many people prefer to live alone with a record increase in single-person households during the time. This trend may influence housing preferences, with a potential rise in demand for smaller dwellings and properties catering to individuals rather than traditional family units.”


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