decorated nook with couch

First of all, before I write this post, I have to say something.

That bench needs to be scooted two inches to the left.


Was it bugging you, too?

I went to upload the pictures for this post and realized they were all taken with a bench that’s throwing off the entire symmetry of the upstairs middle room.


It’s a little hard for me to concentrate on the task at hand with furniture that won’t cooperate, but just between us? I can identify with that bench.

I’m a little random and off-center, too.

And now to the question I have to ask you.

Do we think that farmhouse style has left the building?


I started thinking about this subject in depth after I finished the office makeover. Someone sent me a message about how my style had evolved from the farmhouse style at our Kentucky home and I started evaluating my own home and thinking about how I’ve been replacing some of the farmhouse style in my own home. And then I read this article from Southern Living last month with all these incredibly beautiful images and they made my heart so happy. And the juxtaposition was so powerful and so I wanted to discuss this question with all of you:

Is farmhouse style on its way out?

I did a little research online and in the design world and talked to some design professionals and I have an answer to start the discussion.

My answer is…..

….maybe. 🙂

Here’s the thing.

Styles change all the time.

We change all the time.

What you liked when you were wearing scrunchies in 1995 might not be the same thing you like when you re-wear that scrunchie in 2023.

Farmhouse style is evolving and changing and in its current state, it’s a little less shiplap and a little more cozy.

I think the new term for farmhouse that everyone is using is Rustic Decor.

(total aside: it’s like farmhouse went a little more rustic and vintage.)

couch with decorated pillows

What are the design elements of Rustic Style?

If you want to start dropping the term Rustic Style in conversation, here are a few design elements that you can incorporate into any farmhouse decor to help it transition:

  • seagrass lampshades
  • textured baskets
  • vintage linens
  • down pillows
  • mixing old and new
  • distressed finishes
  • glass panels on furniture
  • layering in different neutral paint colors
  • repurposing anything
  • layering vintage decor to make the farmhouse look even more authentic

Rustic Style just like farmhouse, except a little more woven and back to basics.

Kind of like Laura Ingalls before she moved up from the banks of Plum Creek to the little house on the prairie.

nightstand with books

What are some ways to update farmhouse?

I would not be a good friend if I told you that farmhouse needed a little makeover without giving you any ideas. Here are some SUPER simple ways to update your spaces for 2023 without spending a ton of money:

  1. Replace your regular inserts with down inserts. Look at your couch right now. Are your pillows stiff? Do they look like fun? The easiest way to make them feel more comfortable is to add a little down. If you have an IKEA down the road from you they have the BEST down inserts for $6.99. Or I found this set of two on Amazon for under $25.
  2. Spray paint a basket. You can spray-paint the entire basket and then lightly sand it to make it look distressed. You can spray paint numbers on the front like this.
  3. And while you are at it? Here are eight other things you can update with spray paint in your home.
  4. Paint something white. I’m not talking about your grandmother’s heirloom cabinet—I’m talking about something you bought 5 years ago at a yard sale and meant to paint, but you never did. Look around your house. There’s probably something that could use a little white paint to make it feel fresher. And if you need a white paint suggestion? Here are some of my favorites.
  5. Treat yourself to one new thing for your space. Maybe it’s a patterned pillow. Or maybe it’s a new basket.
  6. Make a new wreath for your space. Here’s a fun one I made using an old grapevine wreath.
  7. Cover books. Buy some wrapping paper or craft paper at the dollar store and cover books and then stamp the titles on the spine. Here are some ideas for decorating with books.

corner chair

You have your own style

Just between us?

I’m still all about a little farmhouse here and there like this upstairs space at the top of the landing.

I still have shiplap walls. I still have rustic baskets. I still have neutral rugs.

I have been farmhouse for years way before anyone ever even called it that or made it a thing and I’m not about to stop now.

There’s a secret to decorating that most people don’t really mention when they talk about trends.

You do you.


Let me say it again so it can sink in.

I know that seems so simple, but the way to create a home that you would take as a date to prom is to EMBRACE all the things that you love.

books on nightstand

Sometimes that style that you love doesn’t even have a label.

It’s kind of farmhouse and kind of glam and kind of yard sale chic and kind of I found this in my attic and I’m making it work.

And that is okay.

It’s actually more than okay.

It’s wonderful.

decorated nook with couch

Look around your spaces and look at the things in your room and ask yourself:

Does it make you happy?

Does it make you smile?

Does it make you want to come home to that room?

Then it’s perfect.

Your home is one of a kind. Your home is loved. Your home is a reflection of who you are.

And you my friend are perfect….

….just the way you are. 🙂

PS That bench still needs to be moved. 🙂

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  1. Image for Doris N Campbell Doris N Campbell

    Surround yourself with things YOU love. That's not necessarily the theme of the day. It's your home and it should reflect things that make you happy.

    1. Image for Kim Kim

      Absolutely! Was reading an article about decorating trends and the author had just ripped out shiplap after six months in favor of another decorating trend. I think adding trendy items is fun, but trying to keep up is futile and expensive. Whatever makes your heart sing is always in style.

  2. Image for Elizabeth@pineconesandacorns Elizabeth@pineconesandacorns

    I have heard that farmhouse was out of style. That even Joanna Gaines was moving away from it. The funny thing, lots of people live on farms and in actual farmhouses, so I am sure they don't care what other people are doing or saying. Last year they said, white kitchens were out...and yet they are everywhere. I say, decorate with things you love and that make you happy. YOU live in the house, not a magazine editor(unless you are one). Life is too short to let other people dictate your happiness.

    1. Image for Linda Linda

      I was having a conversation with my SIL one day and I off-handed mentioned something in my home that was out of style but I loved it and her response was, “no one’s photographing your home for a magazine…& if they were, you should still keep anything that’s sentimental to you and makes you happy! YOU live here! Who cares if it’s in style?!” It was actually freeing to hear her say that…& so very true! Trends come and go but family heirlooms and things you collect make your home unique and all yours. Love your home, style and suggestions KA! Most of all, your joyful writing! Your blog is my favorite lifestyle/decorating blog. Have a great day!

  3. Image for Betsy Betsy

    I do think the total farmhouse look is over but bits and pieces of it are fine. A mix of what makes you happy is best. I read an article the other day saying you can’t go wrong with classic style,

    1. Image for Betsy Betsy

      Woops, me again. Thank for the Southern Living link. It’s filled with great information. Could I ask if you do a Christmas in July posting that you address decorating in a simpler style. I’m trying to use less but still have it feel special. I’m just not sure how to go about it. Thanks.

  4. Image for Diana Clark Diana Clark

    I love what you said. Do you. I thought about what you said and I am an old soul. So there is seldom anything modern in my home but I have quirks. I have a Steampunk diving helmet clock in my bathroom, an Elsie type cow milk pitcher with flowers on her head that makes me smile when I look at it. I have so many things that have followed any style in my home. They are me. I have a terra cotta pot with a face my kids hate but I find amusing. I will always love furniture with curves and florals. My husband likes to call me Flower. I can't help myself. So I will never be of one particular style and that's ok. I like that being a quilter my daughter says I do old patterns but put a more contemporary spin on them. Life is good and we need to do us more often. Thank you for your wonderful blog

  5. Image for Kathy Menold Kathy Menold

    The bit about the bench was so funny. It would be the first thing I noticed in the room. I have been known to straighten other people's pictures because the make me uneasy. A bit anal personality. My home is a mixture of what we love and it reflects the family that lives here. I am now looking for a new sectional for our family room and I will know the right one when I see it. May take a while to find it but that's OK. Part of the fun of shopping is the hunt. Hope you are OK during your heat wave. Stay inside as much as possible and do as little as possible. We have had a week of rain and cooler temps than normal for June in N.C.

  6. Image for Lisa Lisa

    Greetings and good morning, KariAnne. This is an interesting question. This past weekend, my good friend and I visited a decorator home show. You know, where local vendors decorate 5 different houses to showcase new trends, appliances, features, etc. Although there were many features we liked, we immediately noticed the spaces leaned more "modern" for lack of a better term. Very sterile, geometric and almost "overly contemporary", if that makes sense. Many of the rooms looked too "trendy" (patterned wallpapered ceilings, expansive Nano doors with no screens to guard against bugs, small choppy rooms, many rooms with features that may look OK today, but may easily wear out their welcome and would be costly to replace. My friend and I talked a lot about that throughout the tour and we also wondered if the farmhouse approach was going out of style. While I do appreciate many elements in "new styling", I still like timeless, classic decor with wood elements and some farmhouse decor which can add warmth and comfort to an overall space. Mostly, I believe in decorating, refreshing and updating in ways that make you most comfortable and happy with your home and rooms, (without hurting resale potential-lol). That's my 2-6 cents-lol. Hope you have a great day. xoxo

  7. Image for Linda Andersen Linda Andersen

    I do think obvious farmhouse like barn doors, tobacco baskets, etc., are out of style...for me anyway. I guess my house would be rustic as well. A nice mix of old and new! I adore your house...

    1. Image for Judy Judy

      For people who have barn doors in their house, they obviously love them and are not going to change them because they are “not in style anymore”. At least I doubt many people would change them. I have one barn door in the kitchen and I love it!! My house is a traditional house but I have slowly been updating it in more English style/ rustic decor, which to me never goes out of style. I never have followed trends and I love my house! Karianne said it best, about the decor being “part farmhouse style, part glam, part rustic/vintage and yard sale chic, etc. That about sums up my house! I adore KariAnne’s house , that’s the ultimate style. Yo sun up, Inbelieve a lot of aspects of farmhouse style are now classics and will never go out of style.

  8. Image for Diana Diana

    I have learned after decades not to worry about the latest trends. So I just do European shabby and farmhouse touches.It makes me happy and I don't need to switch it up often. It works for me only because I love the vibe. They are changing things up to make you think you need new shinier things.Do what you love it will make you happy and if other people don't like it well, they can do them :)

  9. Image for Tammy Matthews Tammy Matthews

    I don’t see Farmhouse going out of style anytime soon. I frequently see new Modern Farmhouse homes being built where I live in southern Indiana and Louisville, KY. And they sell quickly and are quite adorable! I also see stores like Target, Walmart, Home Goods, and Kirklands stocked with decor that compliments this style. The farmhouse style is so homey and cozy and can be as much or as little as you desire. I have a pretty eclectic style with a little farmhouse here and there and vintage thrown in. It’s so important to fill your home with what you love and what makes you happy regardless of the style it is called. I absolutely LOVE your style KariAnne! I am also a blue/white girl and have always been drawn to blue/white. Our front room is very similar to your blue/white front room. But our family room and kitchen are more neutral. It all makes me happy and I’m so thankful I have a home with different rooms I can decorate and enjoy! Anyone reading your blog and able to decorate and use their home to bless others is so blessed themselves!! Thank you for what you do to encourage us all and to help others.

  10. Image for Mary Smaryt Mary Smaryt

    I am still using some farmhouse elements in my home because it makes me happy. Designers and home decor companies have to change colors and styles often because that is how they make their money. People just can't afford to change everything every year. I just change the color of my pillows and throws every year because they are affordable and it works for me.

  11. Image for Terri Herman Terri Herman

    Moving from the foothills of NC to the coast had an impact on my decorating style. I have slowly moved away from rustic antique look to a more coastal feel. I still have the leather sofa & loveseat but those teal pillows make it work.

  12. Image for DJ DJ

    I’ve always been amused by the “fame house” tag. My dad is a farmer — one in a long line or farmers on “both sides of the house” going back to Adam. We live on a farm. My brother farms. And guess what? Most farmers’ houses don’t look anything like “farmhouse style. I installed shiplap in our farmhouse 26 years ago — eons before it was a fad. Like most true farmhouse choices, it was about practically and durability. Homes are meant for shelter, and for living. Choose what suits your family — what serves you and is fun for you and blesses you. Don’t spend your life trying to accommodate a style. The color of the year and the style of the month are engineered to make people want more and different, and to keep made-in-China in business. Thank you, Kari Anne, for encouraging creativity and individuality. Blessings!

  13. Image for S. Marie S. Marie

    I think we are now "mooshing" different styles together which is actually more fun! For me, anyway. I am "rustic" in the family room. More "cottage" in the kitchen and I hate to use the term "grand millennial" or "coastal grandma" but if you have inherited pieces and lots of blue (chinoiserie) then I guess THAT is the term for how it looks all together when placed in a room. My formal rooms (living and dining fit that description) The bedrooms... Hmmmm..... Early (bet you thought I was going to say Early American, didn't you ;) NOPE. "EARLY EVERY HOUSE WE HAVE OWNED style". Got to get on THAT one! I think the first attempts at Modern Farmhouse were more contrived than now. I was just in a kitchen in a furnished model home that is NOW on the market after 5 years. Prominently displayed in the kitchen is a white sign with bold black lettering that says " The FARMHOUSE". I think THAT is now over. The obvious form of "Farmhouse." Something like how there were too many chickens in WHAT we used to call "country".

  14. Image for Celeste Celeste

    I think it's more a matter of semantics (and a little on design choices). When we compare elements of farmhouse and many of the other "core" styles (grand-millenial, cottage, etc.) there is a lot of overlap. The underlying feel almost always evokes a vintage with modern mix to achieve comfort and coziness. I think farmhouse initially focused on items really found on farms and that didn't always work for the city apartment dweller. So yes, I think true farmhouse is on the way out, but the vintage/modern mix is alive and well and expressed in many styles; from Scandinavian to Boho and everything in between. The best part that has developed over that last twenty years is being able to create my own style. When I was young it was important to have NEW stuff that looked like everyone else's new stuff if you wanted to be stylish. Now we celebrate finding a unique way to create your own environment; Old, new, heirloom, weird. I think watching your style evolve in your home helps us all feel like we can do that too

  15. Image for Peg Peg

    I don't like to follow trends because they're, well, trends! I would say my home is like a comfy cottage and, to me, will never go out of style - just like preppy clothing!! xoxo

  16. Image for Lynne Lynne

    I think any style is 'in style' as long as those existing in it love it. I love farmhouse, the old and rustic, rusted and distressed over time, etc. Some folks may not like the way I decorate - they need more, they need less, they need newer, etc. And that's just fine with me. I know what I love, like, and what I can live with. Living in an old ranch house way out in the sticks makes 'living with' certain things about my home more acceptable. It just is, until I can change it. I never cared much for the saying 'you do you', but when it comes to decorating, I think it fits.

  17. Image for Jodena Beale Jodena Beale

    I absolutely love modern farmhouse style and your house is gorgeous. But when we built out new home and moved in Sept, 2018 I decorated every room modern farmhouse, wall quotes, grey paint..and all. 6 months in I knew I hadnt been happy since moving in. I repainted the whole darn house, bought all knew decor and created the home I felt good in. I'm definitely upscale traditional. But I kept a little modern farmhouse in every room. Yet today as I watch shows I swoon over modern farmhouses I see. But it wasnt my style in my own home. Modern Farmhouse isnt going anywhere. Its still desired and still gorgeous. But we all have to be us, and not follow trendy designers. So...Move that bench two inches and breathe. You did you and your house just right for you.

  18. Image for carol cupp carol cupp

    KarriAnne Several years ago I 'had' to have a painted chest (very reasonable impulse purchase). It was painted black and spot painted with cream and gold! I still remember Sarah the girl who painted it. Smile every time I walk by it in my living room Love it Love it Love it.

  19. Image for Karyn S Karyn S

    I've come to describe our home as "clutterbug-shabby traditional." Nothing chic going on in here. Distressed, to me, is normal wear and tear, far from intentional. Our walls are cool gray, kitchen cabinets are light over dark. Flooring is cooling tile, as we live in the desert. Our home is comfortable, lived in, and functional. It is definitely not a showcase, ready for a magazine spread at any moment. Indeed, I appreciate dusty corners. I actually like watching that one cobweb change over time. I find it interesting. And that bench? Yeah, I noticed that. LOL, I would probably leave it off-center, and pull one end out farther into the room. But, that's me and my contrariness.

  20. Image for Jan Kinman Jan Kinman

    Karianne I totally agree with you! I want to enjoy my rooms and make me smile at my pieces. Have I changed things up over the years? Of course! But nothing brings me greater joy than to here friends and family say, “ Your home is so comfortable to come to”. I think because I enjoy decorating for the seasons it helps me not feel like I’m in a rut. Changing bedding and pillows on the furniture makes my home feel fresh. Thank you for confirming my taste!

  21. Image for Mary Mary

    I decorate with things that mean something to me and that I love. Trends do not dictate my style. Marketing does not dictate my style. My home is my haven and the things in it have a history and importance to my family. They are classic and beautiful pieces. My home is cozy and comfortable, luxurious and stylish, but I don't pigeon hole it into a "style". If Farmhouse style is on the way "out" so be it. I stick to what I like no matter who tells me it is not the current "trend". Trends come and go and are the marketing way to get the consumer to spend their $$$.

  22. Image for Cara Cara

    I believe as long as we are true to ourselves then we can decorate and style our homes any old way we want. I’m not one to follow trends, I just am a vintage lover who enjoys filling my home with all the things, I mean all the vintage things that is teehee…

  23. Image for Rizae Rizae

    I no longer worry about trends! I fill my home with what I love. I call it... country chic meets rock and roll.... My hubby calls it cottage core! P.S. I did notice the bench before you mentioned it and it bugged me too. Hehehe

  24. Image for Michele M. Michele M.

    I have never been a trend follower. I have always been honest in my designs. I don't think farmhouse style can really ever go away - let's face it, those farmhouses have been around for a hundred years and then some. But, unfortunately like anything - once it goes completely and utterly mainstream it deflates. Hey, even Joanna and Chip are gracefully sailing away from it - but never EVER completely. As you stated, just updated a bit. Truth? I never was one to do true farmhouse - no roosters, nary a cow or longhorns here, nope....but I love some rustic in my world. I never will EVER buy into the "new" trend of 1960s and 1970s last mid-century modern. I didn't like it then and I still don't like it - but boy do the millennials - and they are the ones getting those first apartments and first home buyers - so the trend is strong now. But yes - give me some baskets and iron and a little chip here and there (been slowly repainting my much-too-much distressed things for that "upgraded farmhouse" and I love to surround myself with all natural things. And I do not like shiny things, I like earthy gentle tones and textures. So yes, I agree: kinda out because it was much too overdone. Like grey. Just beat that trend to death, they did. But your style mixes it all perfectly. You do you, too, Boo. I just know your article will be taken well - because that's the secret to loving what we have: being honest and making NO apologies for our own style. ♥ Nice reading, KA.


    That bench would drive me nuts!!! Brian Boitano (olympic gold medal skater) once said: "If you love, it works."

  26. Image for Donna Marie Donna Marie

    I ain't gonna clean or take care of a house that I didn't decorate to my liking no matter what is "in !!!"

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