New England Farmhouse Kitchen

Filled with personality, this New England farmhouse kitchen is well planned—and has patina.

The form of this rural New England farmhouse is traditional, but otherwise it’s modern and high-tech: “a state-of-the-art vehicle disguised as an old pickup truck,” says architect D. Michael Collins. A cream-color AGA cooker and a green-grey soapstone double sink are the basis of the period-inspired kitchen. New work was cued by the salvaged fixtures and fittings found by the homeowners. Adding warmth and a farmhouse feel to a serene room with spare lines, the center worktable was built by Ohio-based craftsman David T. Smith. Crafted in curly maple, the 7’6″ x 4′ piece with deep drawers is reminiscent of an old farm table. Smith also built the lower cabinets, which have a custom finish in hand-rubbed milk paint, adding to the antique sensibility.

Continuous, wall-hung upper cabinets belong in post-1950 kitchens. (Photo: Eric Roth)

D. MICHAEL COLLINS, ARCHITECTS South Natick, Mass.: dmcarch.com

1. NO UPPER WALL CABINETS

Continuous, wall-hung upper cabinets belong in post-1950 kitchens. Forego them to create a historical feel, along with a sense of spaciousness and unimpeded light.

2. MIXED AND UNFITTED

Base cabinets are a matched set in design and height, but the rest of the room is pleasantly eclectic. Perimeter cabinets are painted while the table has a natural finish; unique cabinets hang on the walls.

Islands can do double or triple duty. (Photo: Eric Roth)

3. CENTER WORKTABLE

Islands can do double or triple duty, but sometimes a not-too-tall center table looks better and is more flexible: it moves, and can be used for food prep or in-kitchen family dining.

4. ALL TRIED AND TRUE

Using familiar, natural materials that acquire patina is crucial to the farmhouse aesthetic. This kitchen uses plenty of wood, and has a focal-point double sink made of natural soapstone.

Farmhouse kitchen inspiration

Union Pendant from Schoolhouse.

Find a pendant at Schoolhouse. Their solid-brass Union Pendant comes in four finishes including True Black. Choose from traditional schoolhouse, drum, striped or banded, and Deco shades.

Flooring from Carlisle Wide Plank Floors.

This floor of white oak from Carlisle Wide Plank Floors lends warmth to a cottagey kitchen in white. From rustic to elegant, custom floors are created in a range of species, grades, widths, and finishes.

Salcombe Blue AGA Classic 39″ Total Control range.

A basic cooker to which a module may be added, the AGA Classic 39″ Total Control range has European styling and heft, but all functions are independent and can be turned off. In 17 colors including Cream, Black, and Salcombe Blue.

Hand-forged hinges from Horton Brasses.

Iron H and HL hinges have been used since Colonial days. In sizes 3 to 7 inches, these from Horton Brasses are hand-forged and treated with linseed oil. Sold as a pair, two hinges plus pyramid-head screws.


Tags: farmhouse New England OHJ April 2021

By Patricia Poore

Patricia Poore is Editor-in-chief of Old-House Journal and Arts & Crafts Homes, as well as editorial director at Active Interest Media’s Home Group, overseeing New Old House, Traditional Building, and special-interest publications. 

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