It seems like the world is constantly running ahead at light speed, which may account in part for the current popularity of farmhouse and rustic design. The simple style helps create a relaxed, inviting environment in your home. But while the two styles are similar, there are differences between them. So let’s talk a little about the defining characteristics of each so that you can decide which is right for you.
Rustic furniture is inspired by the creations of the early settlers. They used natural wood, because it was readily available to them. Designs were simple and minimalistic; function was the main focus. True rustic furniture has a rougher look, and may appear almost unfinished. It tends to be constructed from “knotty” woods like pine, alder, or hickory – or from reclaimed wood. The wood may be distressed, and there are often pitting or marks visible. The cuts are thicker, and joints and tendons are usually exposed. If the wood is finished, the colors tend to strong and earthy.
Modern farmhouse style furniture is similar in that it tends to use natural wood and an overall simplistic style. However, there is an increasing complexity in design, and pieces may include industrial touches and glossy accents. While the finish is still designed to highlight the natural wood grain, the colors chosen tend to be lighter than in traditional rustic. The end result is an overall look that is more finished and sophisticated.
While the lines between the two styles can get a bit blurry, hopefully that helps you understand the basic concepts. Want some more inspiration? Check out our farmhouse and rustic boards on our Pinterest page!