I recently spent a fall weekend in Philadelphia. The weather was crisp and cool, and the air smelled of apples and pumpkins. All over the city, in restaurants, shops, and hotels, were signs of the hottest trend in decorating right now: Industrial Farmhouse.
The hallmark of Industrial Farmhouse — and yes, it’s a comical name — is the reuse of antique woods that have either been refurbished or are left in their weathered state. I learned that one company has even bought old water-towers and such just to sell the antique wood.
But you don’t need to buy a water-tower or tear down a barn to make Industrial Farmhouse part of your decor. Any re-purposed wood is a great place to start. For example, I visited Pumpkin, a restaurant, market, and café that incorporates antique, distressed window panes to their modern, minimalist decor. (If you visit Philadelphia, Pumpkin is a must-visit with only seasonal, local ingredients on their menu.)
A place that I had hoped to go visit but ran out of time to see was Terrain. I have been looking at their website religiously — not only because as a web master I hope to get some ideas, but because I want almost everything in their store. They seem to have mastered the industrial farmhouse trend effortlessly. Check them out.
French Market is also popular again (which makes me especially happy, considering I adore all things French), and we are starting to see it combined with elements of Industrial Farmhouse such as antique wood. The two work well together, and one sign of a successful trend is when people begin to incorporate elements of it into existing styles. Alternatively, to make your Industrial Farmhouse look a little fancier, you can juxtapose the repurposed wood with the opulence of velvet (again a hot item), or add sparkle by wary of mercury or chandelier glass, as described in my last blog entry.
Returning to the shop after my weekend away, I realized that we have been using the Industrial Farmhouse technique for over 30 years — we are in an old tobacco warehouse, after all. It’s always amusing when you discover that you are on the cutting edge of a trend, when you haven’t made any changes. As we all know in the decorating game, everything old ends up new again at some point, which should reassure all of us that the best approach is to take what we like of the latest trends and make it part of our own personal style. Industrial farmhouse or pastoral penthouse, what matters it that it’s comfortably your house.