Looking to turn your dated exterior into a modern white farmhouse? Here’s a fantastic before and after farmhouse makeover from my own neigbourhood. It often takes more than paint colour to achieve this look. Keep reading to find out why.
Photography by Maria Killam
When Adrienne (above) and her family moved into this rusty red and charcoal house (below) in our neighbourhood, we all happily watched the gradual transformation of the exterior.
One day, I knocked on the door and she gave me a tour of the inside.
I asked if I could post the exterior on the blog since it was such a radical transformation from the previous colour scheme.
So last weekend, I dropped by with my camera and here are the photos.
Here’s the before:
And here’s the after decorated for the holidays:
A modern white farmhouse exterior makeover.
Adrienne knew she wanted modern farmhouse. She has a background in interior design, so many sketches later, this is the final transformation.
It’s incredible how she pulled this off. I think she did a great job tackling all the right details to make this house look so fresh and current.
Modern Farmhouse Details
It’s common to see white paint slapped on an older house like this in an attempt to create the popular white farmhouse look, but in order to make it look right, it often needs more than just paint.
Paint only would have been an improvement because the old colour scheme was so bad, but it would still look like an older house with a new paint job without the tweaks Adrienne made.
The new black windows made a huge difference. She also added more windows on the right side of the second floor that define the dining area.
Black windows are a huge trend. They are more striking and custom looking than standard white and provide the necessary contrast for the white and light exteriors everyone is doing now. Find out what else I have to say about black windows here.
I think black windows can be a classic choice for exteriors (when they are chosen well and create crisp contrast with the body colour), but they are definitely more bossy and challenging in an interior (if you can, keep them white inside).
Related post: Are Black Windows the Best Choice for your New Build
Updating the Roof
The upper roof line was already good, but the porch running across most of the upper story really had no purpose and looked dated.
These were so popular a few decades ago, decks that ran the length or all the way around houses like this. But really, they are impossible to furnish well, and when they are furnished and used, they often just look messy and cluttered.
They removed it and added a black metal roof instead to define the two levels and create some interest. This allowed for a pretty new portico to frame the front entrance. In the before, the main door is barely distinguished from the rest of the windows and doors.
A proper portico is so inviting and really elevates the look of the house.
The stained wood columns repeated in the soffits add warmth to the black and white colour scheme.
Adrienne added simple greenery around the front entrance for the holidays.
And she radically transformed the back shed (kinda like I did with my studio) into a workshop for her flower business:
Here is her studio all set up for a flower arranging workshop during the holidays (above). Doesn’t this look like fun?
Here’s the before and after again:
After (update taken in August)
I can’t believe Christmas is almost here! It’s my favourite time of the year, hope you are having a lovely holiday season!
What do you like best about the new farmhouse exterior?
If you’d like your exterior colours to fill you with happiness when you get home, I can help in our eDesign department here.
If you would like to learn how to choose the right white for your exterior, my exterior webinar will teach you how. (and makes a great gift for the colour obsessed)
If you are building a new house, we can help with our new build package here.