Modern farmhouse decor is still as popular as ever, with no seeming end to walls covered in shiplap, distressed coffee tables, barn doors, and beyond. But not every detail in this canon is a winner straight out of the gates—and some looks are actually full-on fails.
Witness the famed “Fixer Upper” duo Chip and Joanna Gaines, arguably the main source of all things modern farmhouse. Even these category leaders have made mistakes along the way. (Who could forget some of their stranger word art and those framed Mason jars?)
So if you’re worried your enthusiasm for this design trend may have gone off the rails, check out these modern farmhouse fails we’ve found that should never, ever end up in your own home.
1. Signage (and holiday) overload
Sure, we like a folksy sign or two, but not a half-dozen. And while Valentine’s decor in the home is fine here and there (think red pillows or a pink amaryllis), facing this saccharine theme at the coffee bar first thing in the morning is a no-go.
2. Throws and pillows gone overboard
Cozy is fine—and hygge is red-hot—so bring on the chunky knit blankets and soft pillows! But when you can’t find a place to sit on the swing or sofa, there’s a good likeliness that the styling has gotten out of hand. Two throws and four pillows on a small love seat for two means one of you is going to be squeezed out.
3. Too much cute farmhouse decor in a utilitarian space
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What do you think of this charming rustic laundry room? ❤️ We wouldn't mind folding clothes in here! 😂 TAG a friend who will love this room! 👇 (@delightedwiththedetails)⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ .⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ .⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ • follow us @farmhouse.charm ✔⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ .⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ .⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ #farmhouse #farmhousedecor #farmhouseinspired#farmhousekitchen #farmhousedesign #farmhouseliving#beautifuldecor #interiorstyling #interior2you#interior4inspo #interiordesigninspiration #fixerupper#shiplap #shiplapwalls #joannagaines #rusticdecor #rusticfarmhouse #modernfarmhouse #magnoliahome #magnoliamarket #magnoliatable
The laundry room is a utilitarian space for dirty socks and sheets—not pumpkins, dried flower arrangements, and a glass jar filled with who knows what. One swipe with your kid’s hand and that container is in smithereens—and then you’re sweeping up glass and folding boxer shorts!
4. A no-can pantry
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Two years ago today we moved into our home here at Simple Man Farm. For those of you that don’t know, we had a fire at the apartment we were living at on 1/1/17, while we were away on a cruise with our family. We lost everything except what we had in storage. So, we moved into our new home with 2 plastic Adirondack chairs, 2 stools, and a mattress. We have come a long way from that day, with more to come. One of the first things I did was organize our pantry, modeled after Sarah’s pantry @rockyhedgefarm. I had pinned the idea and couldn’t wait to do it! Someone told me that it wouldn’t stay that way. Ha! They didn’t know me! January is when most people organize, right? Happy new year! #farmhousepantry #ilovebeingorganized #simplefarmhousetouches #pantryorganization
Honestly, not even one single can of chicken broth or a box of cereal? These pretty jars with the vintage seals are lovely to behold, but few people will actually decant every edible item they want and then keep up the look week after week. Looking at this pantry actually promotes a dizzy feeling—and woe to the teen or spouse who misaligns these precious rows.
5. Crafts that are a bit too crafty
Farmhouse crafts are often charming, and some are ideal for holiday tabletops, but these pumpkins seem to be decked out in something that looks an awful lot like mold. Do you really want to look at white fuzzy gourds when you’re eating dinner?
6. Crafts you can’t even identify
What the heck is this travesty? A tower of pitchers and Mardi Gras beads? It’s busy, it’s baffling, and it has no place in the home. Or anywhere, really.
7. Gnomes are never a good idea
Football season is serious business for some, so we get that you want to show your team pride. But dressing up hairy, scary gnomes like this and then adding them to your “farmhouse” mantel is just creepy.
8. Pet beds à la farmhouse
No, your cat doesn’t want to perch in a silly carpeted nook surrounded by corner molding, dried flowers, and a piece of distressed window frame. Let your pet live its best life—which is under the bed or on top of the dryer.
9. Mason jars as bathroom storage
Really? Apparently, we can’t get away from Mason jars, even in the loo. Sure they’re handy as a vase stand-in and look cute if you’re serving cocktails at a picnic, but in this case, please put your cotton balls in the bathroom drawer like everybody else.
10. Chicken wire + pithy saying + wine
Is it me or is modern farmhouse overloaded with wine sayings? (“It’s wine-o-clock somewhere,” “All you need is love … and wine,” “Wine: because adulting is hard.”) And the grape focus is made even more cringey when it’s a combo platter of a chicken wire craft splashed with a lame phrase that’s supposed to store all the corks you’ve pulled. Just. No.
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