Modern farmhouse style has gained in popularity in recent years, due to its simple, inviting, and functional design elements. But you don’t have to live on a farm to embrace this sweet and cozy design theme. Here’s what you need to know before diving into a farm-seeking design reno in Phoenix.
Phoenix is notorious for rounded (aka bullnose) corners at adjoining walls. It’s a nod to the long-standing adobe style found in this part of the country. But if you’ve gazed at Pinterest lately, you may have noticed that most farmhouse design pics have straight corners. This makes adding wall embellishments, such as shiplap, much easier.
So what’s a Phoenician to do? Own those rounded wall corners and adorn your walls anyway!
For example, stop the wainscoting or wooden planks at the natural line before the corner begins to curve, or a little before that line if you choose to add a decorative trim piece to “cap” it. Then paint the bullnose the same color as your wall décor so that it doesn’t stand out. Hello, shiplap!
Phoenix is a little less farm and a lot more ranch. Due to our desert landscape, designers historically have embraced the natural browns, beiges, and taupes that are ubiquitous in our environment.
That’s all fine and dandy, except that traditional farmhouse design tends to fancy more pure shades of white, grays, and blues – typically cool colors.
This predicament is easily solved by incorporating more warm colors into your farmhouse design if that’s what is predominantly in your abode. Don’t fight it or your design won’t feel cohesive!
For example, if your trim is painted an antique white color, choose wall colors that lean more toward yellows and greens, instead of blues. You can sometimes get away with red undertones, depending on cabinet and furniture color.
Test color samples before committing, or you may end up repainting your laundry room days after it’s finished. Been there, done that!
Farms are filled with a rainbow of colors and textures! Add in pops of real or synthetic foliage for interest and a grounding feeling. In fact, studies have shown that people who live near greenbelts are happier.
Fill your indoor spaces with plants that allude to a different climate and contrast desert colors. Quintessential farmhouse flowers include peonies, hydrangeas, sunflowers, roses, and lilies. Adding soft pinks or bright yellows and blues from bouquets can draw you into the farm life in suburbia. From the kitchen to bathrooms, bedrooms, and the laundry room, include flowers and foliage for a calming ambiance.
Have you been to a real farm lately? Farmers are notorious for being resourceful and making do with what they’ve got lying around. As such, this resourcefulness is reflected in farmhouse design by means of repurposing common farm tools into décor. Got an old worn out pail? Turn it into a vase.
Don’t be afraid to add elements of rustic metals, such as galvanized or unfinished steel, and quasi-rusty pipes into your décor. These provide lots of textural interest and surprise when combined with higher-end shelving, furniture, or foliage. Plus, the rusty bronze shade goes well with warmer tones of brown and beige.
Phoenix has one of the most unique climates in the country, and home design has been complying with these realities for decades (e.g. stucco walls, fewer windows, almost nonexistant skylights).
When updating your Phoenix house to farmhouse style, choose materials that offer the feeling of a farmhouse without using materials that are ideal for another place.
For example, wood flooring doesn’t do well in our harsh environment; instead choose a high-quality, durable laminate or even the newer wood tile.
When using natural wood accents, acclimate it to the space where it will be installed for 48 hours prior to hanging on the walls, and allow ¼” gap at 90 degree corners to allow for thermal expansion. (Yes, even in the desert wood can swell in high humidity, such as during Monsoon Season.)
Despite the elevated temperatures and sunny, dry climate, a farmhouse style can absolutely be achieved in your Phoenix home. Follow these tips, and boldly embrace the framework that living in the desert necessitates.
You’ll feel like you’re escaping the hustle and bustle of city life with a little home renovation work and a whole lot of farm inspiration!