How to Achieve Farmhouse Style On A Budget
Our goal is to help you achieve farmhouse style on a budget so you have funds left over to enjoy the farmhouse lifestyle. We want our blog and store to be a place where you want to grab a cup of coffee and settle in somewhere comfy to read, browse and shop great finds you will love.
So pull up a chair and let’s get started!
What you will learn in this article:
• Why Farmhouse style is not just for the home but a LIFESTYLE
• How to change your current style without creating chaos and bleeding your wallet dry
• Key elements to achieving the farmhouse style on a budget
Why Farmhouse style is not just for the home but a LIFESTYLE
FARMHOUSE LIFESTYLE= Laid back life spent enjoying each moment, be it in the garden planting tomatoes, sipping sweet tea on the front porch, strolling the beach at sunset, enjoying an event like the Kentucky Derby or tailgating for college football, with a huge emphasis on quality and comfort while also oozing style. also see “Nothing Better”.
FARMHOUSE WARES=Anything that embodies a cozy, collected, carefree, rustic, vintage or casual vibe.
FARMGIRL=Convinced life runs better in jeans, a t-shirt, and boots but fancies the occasional opportunity to rock a dress like Holly Golightly. Leader, statement maker, lover of all things nature & good, she will hold fast to her laid back farm style roots long after “Fixer Upper” is off the top ten list (Blasphemy!).
***Those handy dandy definitions are official Nest originals but we feel sure Webster’s or at least Wikipedia should take note and adopt them soon.
Curveball. Just seeing if you were paying attention. Actually, this dapper boy deserves a frame.
And this guy?….He clearly knows there is nothing better than seeing a farm girl get gussied up for date night.
How to change your current style without creating chaos and bleeding your wallet dry
We live in a society where instant gratification is almost expected so this will likely be your battle when viewing gorgeous farmhouse style on Instagram and television. Do yourself a favor and quit comparing your home to those who excel at presenting photos of what appears to be a perfect life.
Instead, decide from the start that if you really love the farmhouse look you will be able to achieve your own stunning rustic farm style without breaking the bank with enough time and effort.
The great news is more than any other style, farmhouse style is easy to achieve on a budget.
Remember the definition above? Farmhouse style is an informal, casual, collected look and made that much more authentic and “real” by utilizing pieces you either inherit or can find second hand as opposed to buying everything expensive and new.
As a result, farmhouse style is NOT at all about going to a furniture store and buying an entire suite of ready-made matching furniture.
So, what do you do if you’ve done that in the past and have a room full of matching items?
Not to worry! That is also the charm of embracing farmhouse style. You can easily transform current pieces with chalk paint or upholstery to give them a completely different look and/or add additional items found at bargain pricing via Craigslist, etc… and attain the collected look easily.
*TIP: If you have a piece of furniture you are unsure about keeping, do some research on that particular item to see what others have done with it. You may fall back in love with an item you were thinking of giving away if you can transform it.
Find several inspiration photos and print them to use as your reference for each room.
Take inventory of what you currently own so you can assess what you should keep and what should go using these categories:
Keep I highly advise keeping armoires and dressers because they are easy to revamp with many gorgeous farmhouse looks and they offer storage. Also, think outside the box on how the items you own now can possibly suit other purposes.
Example: Armoires can be used for a small office, craft closet, or a liquor cabinet; a social favorite.
Refurbish Something new from something old is only a finish away (via paint/stain/reupholster, etc…).
Donate Clear up space for something new (to you) while saving your receipt for a tax write-off!
Sell While donating is a worthwhile endeavor, some items are just too valuable to give away (you may also want to explore a trade via online services because someone might love what you have and vice versa).
Make a bookmark on your computer for Craigslist and CHECK IT DAILY. You are competing with others who know a good thing when they see it, so you’ll need to be able to jump on pieces as soon as you see them.
Draw up a plan for the items you plan to refurb.
Hold a garage sale for items you are selling (or sell them online via Craigslist, etc…) and use the funds from the sale to invest in key farmhouse pieces that you need.
Unsure how to spend the funds if you are unsure what will have the most impact? That depends on what you are lacking or what you need, but you will do well adding in any of the key elements listed below.
Key Elements to Achieving Farmhouse Style On a Budget:
Galvanized metal: Inexpensive and easy to find at many stores, just think buckets, organizers, tiered trays, napkin rings, stocking holders and so on. We have hand selected some fantastic galvanized decor from Amazon for you like the following:
Burlap (no surprise here): Very economical and beloved by Farmhouse fans for the prized texture it gives. We adore burlap curtains, tablecloths, runners, placemats, and the like.
Word of caution: While die-hards consider it a fair price to pay for the look it gives in return, some burlap has an odor at first but this should go away after a few days. The shedding, however, can be indefinite.
Options for some fantastic burlap decor:
Unique vintage statement maker: This is where the magic happens in Fixer Upper. Joanna is hugely talented but the icing on her projects is almost always rare statement pieces added into a space that creates HUGE impact and brings instant character to even a new space. I advise allotting a portion of your budget and time to finding the right unique item (s) for your home. Typography and signs are HUGE in farmhouse style but authentic antiques and relics can be major budget busters.
The above giant antique sign would likely be a couple thousand dollars. OUCH!
Don’t despair, you can likely achieve the same impact by creating or purchasing an item that is new and made to look vintage. ETSY is a great source for handmade vintage looking signs. This is a fantastic option if you want a very large custom piece tailor-made to fit your space.
Here are some items to get in on the farmhouse sign trend that pack a ton of punch because of the large size:
Add Reclaimed or Aged Wood throughout your home for warmth and texture. There are tons of tutorials available for making furniture and decor out of pallets which can be found for free most of the time with enough search ingenuity.
One of our favorite ways to get a farmhouse look while using what we have is by taking a stain off of a well-designed piece of furniture. By scraping off the stain and getting down to the bare wood one is left with a piece that screams “Pinterest star” for almost free.
Fair warning: Stripping any furniture is a messy job you only want to attempt in a well-ventilated area while wearing industrial strength plastic gloves. Also, as my husband often laments, it is very difficult to sand wood that has a veneer.
If this is your goal, try to find solid wood (compare the grain on the underside to that of the surface to be sure).
Easy ready made items available to bring the warm cozy wood look to your home without the messy job:
Spread Cozy items liberally throughout your home. We are of the firm belief that this cannot be overdone so have at it.
After all, part of the reason why you likely fell in love with farmhouse style is how broken in and well-loved the look is, right? Look closely at photos that inspire you and you’ll likely spot an abundance of what we call the Cozy Factor.
Take advantage of this budget friendly element and purchase or put to use items like floor pillows, soft throws, vintage quilts, sheepskin pillows or rugs, washed linen bedding and the like. Bonus: You’ll love how much softer and more welcoming your environment will be as a result.
Some top cozy factor choices:
Fresh Perspective on Some Items you May Already Own
Finally, take a new look at the items you own or have access to via a family member that have history and are not being used.
An example: Take that box of vintage photos that is hiding in a drawer and get them out and on display in various ways (gallery walls, picture frames, etc..) PRONTO! Looking for something unique? How about that metal fan in your Aunt Mary’s garage collecting dust?
Remind her who her favorite niece/nephew is and
beg ask if you can show it some love by naming it Bernard and putting it on display at your house. The same goes for those vintage books you found at a garage sale but have in a box somewhere. Put those puppies out where they can be enjoyed and add instant charm to the room they are in. You might surprise yourself and rediscover the experience that only comes from thumbing through a vintage book with a good story to tell. Vintage coke crates you bought at a flea market? Use them for storage (matchbox cars, photos, greenery, etc…) Put them up on the wall or use them on a table for displaying those photos you hauled out earlier.
Charm, efficiency and the envy of your neighbors for your witty displays? Winning combo definitely.
Above all, the entire point of the Farmhouse lifestyle (at least here at the Nest where we have done some hard studying on the subject) is to ENJOY the journey. That means appreciating what you have NOW, in this moment, not wishing your house looked just like a blogger’s photos of her perfect home.
None of us know what her home looks like behind the scenes and if she is honest she’ll likely tell you like I will that nothing stays as perfect as it looks in the photo for long.
That’s because those very things are meant to be
abused enjoyed, lived in, tossed about in a pillow fight, spilled on the floor because you are forever a klutz (I speak with great experience here I assure you), covered in dog hair ten minutes after you’ve vacuumed DAILY, and so on and so on.
Remember, the goal is to achieve your own version of fabulous farmhouse style on a budget. Freedom to find humor in the process is a great bonus.
Make a plan, do what you can, and have a ball getting there. Alright, Nesters, peace out until next time. XOXOXO