Modern farmhouse kitchen ideas – how to achieve a country look even if you live in the city

Love that country look but want to keep it feeling fresh with a modern twist? Take inspiration from our modern farmhouse kitchen ideas

Modern Farmhouse Kitchen Ideas - a large kitchen with rustic shelving and globe glass chandelier
(Image credit: Leanne Ford)

Modern farmhouse kitchen ideas remain perpetually popular because of the comfort and homeliness associated with them – making the kitchen a social heart of the home. The relaxed concept of a country kitchen also offers up plenty of opportunities for creative license and personal touches whether it’s including patterned textiles in the scheme or incorporating salvaged period features.

We love the country look but want to explore how it can work within a modern space, whether that's stripping the farmhouse look back to minimal basics with architectural barn kitchens incorporating steampunk chandeliers in a rustic space. But it's a balance that can be tricky to get right, so we've pulled together all our favorite kitchen ideas, as well as asked designers for their top tips get you inspired and ensure you nail a modern twist on a classic look.

Inspiring modern farmhouse kitchen ideas

1. Pair oversized furniture and bright hues

colors that go with yellow

(Image credit: Little Greene)

This small kitchen nook has all the hallmarks of a chic boutique bolthole with playful oversized furniture and accessories that give a nod to classic farmhouse furniture. A minimal linen pendant light hangs over a contemporary kitchen table and bright bobbin stools. The fairytale-like furniture is paired with joyous kitchen color combinations of yellow and green with a patchwork of dusky blue floor tiles.

'The kitchen really is the heart of the home, it’s a central hub, a hive of activity, and a place for entertaining friends,' says Ruth Mottershead Creative Director of Little Greene. 'It’s therefore an ideal place to make a statement with adventurous and vibrant color choices.'

2. Mix rustic finishes with painted cabinets

A two tone kitchen with raw wooden base cabinets and mint green wall cabinets

(Image credit: Future)

This modern farmhouse kitchen combines painted kitchen cabinets with raw textures, allowing creativity with color but still retaining character and texture in your surroundings. The generously sized modern Shaker kitchen features mint blue painted upper cabinets with brass details and beautifully crafted lower cabinets in unpainted rustic wood.

Painted, real wood kitchens are growing in demand,' says Sinead Trainor, Kitchen Category Manager at LochAnna Kitchens. 'The trend for natural textures as well as mixing textures and materials, even across door ranges in the kitchen, continues.'

3. Infuse character using vintage furniture 

Spanish style farmhouse kitchen with vintage tiled floors and dark kitchen table with bobbin legs

(Image credit: Jessica Helgerson Interiors)

This striking monochrome 'Alhambra' kitchen by Portland-based designer Jessica Helgerson is inspired by a Meditteranean farmhouse look. An expansive vintage table reminiscent of a traditional Spanish table but higher for counter use, brings tonnes of character alongside a black and white patterned kitchen flooring.

Brass pendant lights and black cabinetry alongside striking black Crittall windows that let in plenty of light keep the look fresh and contemporary.

4. Be inspired by barn house styles 

Tall barn kitchen with light wood panelling and a panoramic window looking into the countryside

(Image credit: Jack Trench)

From California to the Cotswolds, architects are radically rethinking the traditional farmhouse space. Exposed superstructures, high ceilings, open-plan kitchen layouts ideal for large-scale entertaining, and vast windows capturing vistas of landscape and sky. This minimal reimagining of the farmhouse kitchen celebrates exposed trusses and beams, abundant wood, soaring ceilings and reclaimed materials.

'We kept the kitchen design as clean and pared-back as possible,' says Jack Trench founder of Jack Trench Bespoke Kitchens & Furniture. 'So as not to detract from the barn’s stonework and original roof beams.'

5. Update a space with statement storage

Rustic Christmas kitchen decorating ideas by deVOL

(Image credit: deVOL)

Bringing a farmhouse kitchen up to date can be as simple as introducing some key pieces of freestanding furniture to the space and a display cabinet is always a fun option. deVOL's Sebastian Cox range of kitchen shelving and cabinets can easily be described as 'urban rustic' and focuses on utilizing sustainable British timbers.

With birch plywood carcasses, doors made from sustainable timbers such as beech and ash and the incorporation of beautiful and delicate woven panels. 

'The whole kitchen is designed to look like it breathes,' says designer Sebastian Cox. 'We’ve created something that feels clean, simple, and light but is brimming with subtle texture to keep the choice of material front of mind. And as you’d expect it is immaculately made with really charming details; the doors use very beautiful sliding dovetails that are visible on the inside.'

6. Bring a Cali-vibe to a farmhouse kitchen

A bright kitchen with an island with storage containing bowls in the middle of the room

(Image credit: Main Kitchen Co)

Kitchen islands are a perennial favorite for sociable farmhouse-style kitchens. This airy Californian-inspired kitchen brimming with light boasts a beautiful stone island that houses reams of storage underneath as well as open shelving to display books and glassware - doubling up as a display cabinet too.

'At the planning stage try to make your island as large as you can comfortably fit into your kitchen,' says Sam Hart a designer at Roundhouse Kitchens. 'If it’s too mean in size you won’t get the benefits it will bring. It will become a focal point and you’ll want enough space around it for people to sit and socialize. If you integrate a sink and hob, the cook can be at the center of things rather than tucked away from the action.'

7. Incorporate a statement chandelier

Large farmhouse kitchen with rustic wooden shelves and glass globes chandelier

(Image credit: Leanne Ford)

This glorious kitchen is by American designer Leanne Ford is one of our all-time favorites – a perfect mix of classic and modern farmhouse wall decor. The rustic wood ceiling stands out against the bright white rest of the kitchen and is mirrored by the vast oak kitchen table and wood hearth of the modern farmhouse fireplace.

The kitchen is brought even more up to date by incorporating a statement industrial chandelier the perfect kitchen lighting idea to marry the history of the property with contemporary flair.

8. Use cocooning hues to warm large spaces

A pretty pale pink kitchen with brass handles and rustic vase of flowers

(Image credit: Plain English)

Kitchen color schemes can be used as a clever technique to make vast spaces like open-plan farmhouse kitchens feel softer and more welcoming. Pastels and muted shades are perfect for doing just that. Experiment with these barely-there shades, like pale pinks and sage greens, that just add a little more warmth than say a neutral grey or cream.

'In what is a large and lofty space, a combination of rosy colors and natural materials bring an important warmth and coziness to the room.' explains Adrian Bergman, Design Manager at British Standard by Plain English. 'The soft pink married with the brass hardware, marble worktop, and oak flooring sit harmoniously together creating a cocooning sanctuary.'

What is farmhouse style kitchen?

Farmhouse-style kitchens tend to focus on natural materials, unpretentious design, and cooking spaces that can accommodate large meals. Cooking implements, appliances, sinks, and storage are also important facets of farmhouse kitchen design. 

What should I put in my farmhouse kitchen?

A farmhouse kitchen can feature a combination of various materials, including natural and reclaimed wood cabinetry, walls and butcher block tops; marble and soapstone alternative countertops and backsplashes; wire and glass details; and brushed nickel, brushed brass or wrought iron faucets, lighting, and hardware

Rohini Wahi

Rohini Wahi is Content Editor for Livingetc Online. With a decade-long career in the interiors and design industry working as a journalist for premium lifestyle publications then delving deeper into the business as a trend forecaster, Rohini has amassed a wealth of global design knowledge that informs her work. She loves a period drama and keeps a tidy home.