Rustic kitchens have a cosy warmth that their modern hi-gloss and minimalist equivalents can only dream of. If you are planning your own rustic or country-style kitchen, think about the must-have ingredients first and the rest should follow.
Every classic rustic kitchen will have a range cooker, a butler-style white ceramic sink, wooden kitchen units (in a plain or painted finish) including country staples such as dressers and larders, a no-nonesense honest beast of a farmhouse table with a good set of sturdy chairs to match – or mix and match. Be open to kitchen island ideas too.
Alongside these main ‘ingredients’ think about just how traditional you want your kitchen to look: will it be full-on scrubbed rustic with no feature finishes and maybe a few vintage kitchen ideas, or might you prefer a more modern country approach with painted Shaker-style details and floral, striped fabrics or even bold kitchen tiles in navy or red to warm up proceedings a little.
A more modern approach might be to take the raw materials of the rustic kitchen (with its stripped timber, stone, brickwork and metal) and give them an industrial feel. Pendant lighting, bar stools and a hint of copper and leather can all bring a fresh new feel to a rustic kitchen.
While traditional rustic kitchens were practical affairs, they were also designed to make the most of the heat from the range, with chairs and table brought into close proximity. Mirror this cosy, sociable side of the rustic kitchen by making your space feel friendly and welcoming. Introduce tactile linens, crockery and enamelware and look out for good kitchen storage ideas, while keeping pans and utensils within easy reach to emphasise the working nature of your space.
Space a bit snug in your kitchen? Take a look at these small kitchen ideas for inspiration.
If you are lucky enough to have beams in your kitchen – this one is in a stunning barn conversion – then don’t be afraid to make the most of them. Let oak A-frames shine with a complementary stripped floor and a simple scheme of white painted walls. Steer clear of wall units and confine base cabinets to a single run along one wall, leaving other areas free for a dining table and chairs, kitchen island and painted dresser. Drop in a striped rug or two to break up the expanse of wood a little.
Simplicity is often the key to a rustic kitchen. Team dark stained timber and neutral painted wood in equal measure for a balanced, no-nonsense scheme. Here the wooden worktop is a perfect partner to the open wooden shelving units, kitchen door and wooden beams. Neutral walls match painted units with a traditional double-bowled ceramic sink ticking another country box. The under-sink skirt is a wonderfully simple retro touch.
Hen & Hammock
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Woodbridge Kitchen Company
Even if your kitchen isn’t full-on rustic, it’s possible to introduce a country feel with a central island and pan rack. In this black-and-white kitchen a chunky island unit with a distressed purple painted finish and a wooden worktop makes a stunning focal point that instantly turns the space into a country kitchen. The rustic pan rack is made from rough-hewn dovetail-jointed timbers and features iron rails and black chains.
Enjoy the freedom of a mismatching approach to kitchen design. In this homely space, it is only the colour scheme that is a constant throughout. The units are freestanding and a mix of homespun designs, while the table and high chair have been given distressed – and contrasting – paint finishes. Storage isn’t confined to cupboards or to one area, but distributed across open shelves and beams, where nails are pressed into service as hooks for pans, aprons and kitchen linens.
Not on the High Street
This impressive kitchen owes its rustic credentials to three ingredients: the wooden beams, a blue Aga and the flagstone floor. So core are these three elements that it allows units, appliances and furntiure with a modern edge to be introduced without affecting the core rustic nature of the design. The hi-gloss island-cum-table is a lovely piece of dual-function furniture.
Take the practical elements of the rustic kitchen and give them a modern spin. Here wood, stone and metal – in the form of open shelves, marble worktops, stone floor tiles and metal bar stools and shelf brackets – bring a hard-working utilitarian feel to this kitchen space. Retro-style, black-grouted white metro tiles introduce a retro touch, too.
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Rustic kitchens don’t have to lack colour. Introduce warmth and pattern to yours with bright linens, tableware and glassware in a heady mix of orange, green and purple. Bring in preloved chairs with mismatching paint finishes and co-ordinate them with scatter cushions in bold, fun florals. A rise-and-fall copper pendant light makes a warming finish touch, hung low over the table.
Glasses and jug
If you don’t fancy a whole room full of rustic character, why not limit it to just one area of your kitchen? This range cooker has been fitted into an exposed brick chimney breast for a marvellously country-style centrepiece. Copper pans, a ceiling height wine rack, basketry and plaited garlic all press the style home.
Go white for a rustic kitchen with a beach-house vibe. In this charming space, freestanding storage and dresser units – all timeworn and well loved – rub shoulders with a range cooker and low-hung pendant lights, all in fabulous white. A wooden worktop complements the stripped table and bench, made comfortable with smart linen cushions.
Use a country kitchen dresser to introduce colour and pattern. Here, blue-and-white storage jars, pots and plates bring florals and fun to a rustic kitchen corner. The blue complements the smart navy Aga and is picked up, too, by the cotton throw. The terracotta tiled floor and painted stone walls are classic rustic touches.
Well-loved shaker-style units with beech worktops allow an exposed brick chimney nook to take centre stage in this rustic country kitchen. Coloured splash-back tiles and coordinating accessories compliment the post-box red aga, while floral blinds add a decorative touch.
Rustic shades of earthy brown are utilised to give this bijoux country kitchen a cosy lived-in feel. Cream-painted kitchen units and wall tiles keep the room feeling light; teamed with warm wooden worktops and aged vintage handles. Pretty potted plants bring the outside in, neatly lined up on the windowsill.
Farrow & Ball
Rustic kitchens are known for warmth, cosiness and character, so live up to the stereotype with a charming sit spot next to a warm aga perfect for whiling away chilly days. A colourful vintage quilt and pretty embroidered cushion are soft and tactile, great for taking the edge off rough brickwork.
Accessories are a quick and affordable way of achieving a rustic look in any kitchen traditional or contemporary. When choosing, opt for organic shapes, raw materials and natural shades of green; arrange on worktops or open shelving for a display thats both stylish and practical, too.
This modest French farmhouse scheme is brought to life by sturdy unbleached furniture, ticking fabrics and no-nonsense enamelware,combining shades reminiscent of rustic sacking with on-trend pops of blue. The painted crates provide easy-on-the eye storage and a well-placed curtain hides away pots and pans.
The more timeworn pieces of furniture you incorporate into your scheme the better when it comes to creating a rustic feel particularly if your appliances are contemporary in looks. This spacious kitchen diner successfully combines old and new, ticking the boxes with an oversized butchers block made from reclaimed wood, a scrubbed-back farmhouse table and a distressed kitchen dresser.
Oak cabinets contrast beautifully with glazed marble surfaces in this country kitchen. A Tudor-inspired mosaic mural behind the range cooker is an eye-catching feature as well as a great talking point. Its framed with an ornate mantel painted to look like stone for a quirky homespun twist on rustic style.
A rustic look isnt always country-inspired this back-to-basics kitchen space has a minimal, industrial feel with its salvaged butlers sink and base units made from recycled fruit boxes. Antique stools picked up at flea markets and second-hand furniture shops create an informal and relaxed dining area.
This full-of-fun kitchen is reminiscent of a farmersmarket with its fresh seasonal colours and fruit-and-veg themed motifs. Whitewalls and simple oak furniture are key to achieving a wholesome scheme the perfect backdrop for vivid red and green accents.