Unpretentious, welcoming and very livable, farmhouse style is an alluring way to decorate your home with antiques that have history, stories and meaning.

Gaining momentum as a favorite design style, the farmhouse aesthetic is a charming mix of rustic, country, and traditional, and proves that simple style can be quite sophisticated.

With a nod to country farms and houses of the past, this style of decorating encompasses antiques that have been used in country homes for generations.

While inherently beautiful, so much so that some can be displayed as sculptural art, these simple pieces should be functional and practical.

Farmhouse antiques are hard working pieces, and have all the aging, chips and wear to show for it.  Antique objects with such great patina bring character to any room, helping to create the illusion of an interior that has been accumulated over time.

Even just a few farm style pieces will add a lived-in aesthetic to your home.


1. Baskets.  Simple baskets are not only practical, they are strikingly decorative, and capture the farmhouse style. Look for quality of workmanship, paying special attention to the detail and the weave. An older basket will bear witness to its age and have the rich color of patina and normal wear in the expected places. Antique baskets will often be heavier than their newer counterparts, and have wood handles. Avoid brittle baskets, and check for repairs, the best investments are baskets in original condition.

2. Natural Textiles. Spun from linen and flax, simple linen tablecloths, napkins, grain sacks and sheets made up every farmer’s wife household linens.  With an appealing texture, history and hand made quality, original antique linens are highly collectable. Look for pieces that have a smooth, soft feel that only decades of washing can attain. Search out unstained, nearly pristine pieces, although a few small spots are to be expected. As history is part of the appeal of antique textiles, mends and patches are considered appealing, they tell the story that someone long ago loved and used the linens with love and pride.

3. Ironstone. The simplicity and utilitarian quality of gleaming white ironstone makes it a favorite for adding the farmhouse aesthetic to an interior. Thick and heavy, ironstone is not only decorative to display, they are the workhorses of any farm style table setting. Look for pieces without too much damage, especially chips around the rims. Ironstone pieces are survivors, their resilience tells their story, so minor discoloration is acceptable, adding patina to their beauty. Most true antique ironstone will be marked on the bottom.

4. Enamelware. Sturdy enamelware, sometimes called graniteware, was a staple in every farmhouse a century ago. Humble coffeepots, canister sets, kettles and pitchers in soothing neutral colors are predominant in farmhouse style kitchens. Look for heavy and substantial pieces that have a thick and glossy finish. Most antique pieces will have tiny hairlines called craquelure in the finish. Missing pieces of enamel are expected on knobs and handles, but avoid pieces with huge chunks missing, and a lot of rust.

Farmhouse style combines beautifully with most other decor styles.

Collections of baskets, ironstone, quilts, enamelware, wood bowls and antique silver are all accessories that help your home embrace the country charm of farmhouse style, without having to move to a barn.

The soothing colors, honest natural materials and age-worn finishes of farm antiques will orchestrate this rustic lived in look in your home.

I have to admit, I am not the “farming” type. The closest I come to being casual is probably jeans with pearls, and a little glitz thrown in!

This photograph was taken a few years ago by my friend Christine Rose Elle, and I always laugh thinking this was the “casual” outfit I brought with me for the photo shoot.

{that, and the fact that I was wearing huge false eye lashes Christine insisted I try, which I thought felt like caterpillars on my eyes- I was not a fan}

Having said that, I do LOVE farm style antiques, especially the French antique pieces we import from the French countryside.  They mix happily in our home with some of our “elegant” pieces, it makes for a happy mix. A mix that expresses my personality precisely!  And a mix that many of you LOVE, too!


I am unpacking our latest French Country Farmstyle antiques this week for the shop. And secretly fall in love with each piece I bought for us you. GO HERE TO SHOP FRENCH COUNTRY KITCHEN and FARMHOUSE ANTIQUES.

This article will appear in the September issue of Romantic Homes Magazine, out soon! Please be sure to get a copy, Romantic Homes is undergoing a make-over, and it’s going to be GORGEOUS!

Are you a farm style lover at heart? HOW DO YOU BRING FARMHOUSE PIECES INTO YOUR HOME?

20 Responses to FARMHOUSE STYLE ANTIQUES TO COLLECT| with Romantic Homes Magazine

  1. This is a beautifully written post! The authentic farmhouse pieces appeal to me so much more than the current reproductions.

  2. Jill,
    Me too! I love the old, antique pieces that are not quite perfect. Rather one of those than ten of the “made today” ones-
    there is no character or life in those. I love knowing someone else used, loved and added their life stories to the antiques I sell at FrenchGardenHouse.

  3. I’ll take every one of these pieces, they are all gorgeous and all just right for farmhouse style anywhere. The photo is fabulous of you, I am quite the opposite, I love casual far more than dressy! Xx

  4. How wonderful these things have been rescued for another generation to enjoy. Looking forward to your article in the upcoming Romantic Homes.

  5. I agree, Carol! Thank you for looking forward to the Collecting article!

  6. Lidy,
    I enjoy reading your blog so much. My question for you is about hanging plates. Do you have a recommendation
    for good hangers that won’t damage the plates? Thank you.


  7. Gorgeous photo of you Lidy! Thanks for another beautiful post. I love it all!!

  8. Thank you Ginger. I am never a big fan of me in photos {like all of us probably}
    but this one, after being “fixed” by the photographer, no doubt, is ok.

    I am so thankful that you always take the time to leave a comment, friend.

  9. I love all these pieces. This has been my “style” for quite a long time and I have you to thank for a lot of it. I discovered your shop several years ago and I just instantly fell in love with your style and the French items themselves. You look terrific in that photo-blue is definitely a good color on you. Diana

  10. Thank you Diana! I can only imagine I would love the home you created for you and those you love. Kindred spirits, you and I. {and thank you for the compliment, at my age, photoshop is my friend! 😉 }

  11. What beautiful farmhouse antiques…I love that the farmhouse antiques are so universal…those seen here are seen in Europe…I guess it is because we began with the wonderful European influence…your collections are always exquisite. Now I love the look of jeans and pearls! I often wear my Mikimotos with jeans..You look way too adorable!….

  12. Shirley, you are such a sweet friend! We are even kindred spirits with jeans and pearls…love it!

  13. Is Romantic Homes magazine associated with Victoria magazine? I have been a fan of Victoria for many years. I even purchased old issues on Ebay when they were on a hiatus from publishing. I do wish (or would enjoy) that they focus on Italy as well as France and England.

  14. Lisa, Victoria magazine is published by Hoffman Media, Romantic Homes is published by Engaged Media. Romantic Homes magazine does have a sister publication that is called Victorian Homes Magazine. And- this will make you happy{!}- the latest Victoria Magazine had a feature about the city of Parma, and the Mercantefiera antiques show there! {I’m going to that in October, can’t wait}

  15. I love everything you feature! I told my children if I ever died on a trip to France ….please bury me there !!!!!

  16. Bonnie, you are so funny! Hope there are lots of trips to France in your future…but no burying!

  17. Hi, Lidy,
    Well first of all a great photo of you, very pretty lady and love your hair, not many gal’s can wear it and it looks super on you, also enjoyed all of above. My friend’s just moved to France from England and love it she also collect’s
    and I would like to give her your e-mail for here, she would really enjoy, you 2 may even meet one day, they moved to Clarete, they travel a lot so she will really enjoy all your goodies. Have a great weekend~~~~~~~~~~~~

  18. Thank you Jean! Photo editing works wonders on wrinkles and such. 😉

    What a lucky friend, hopefully you will be able to visit her one day there!

    Wishing you a beautiful weekend, too!

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