Looking to renovate your old farmhouse? If yes, then why not make it look new by adding modern elements?

Black, for example, is a popular choice for contemporary farmhouse exteriors as it lends a modern touch to this classic style of home. It is why, if you noticed, a lot of designs today are painted with black or dark hues.

But farmhouses come in all shapes and sizes, and they can be painted any color you can imagine. And should not be limited with the color black only

That said, if you are planning to make your farmhouse look modern without painting it all black, below are a few sample designs that you can take inspiration for.

1. Black Minimalist Farmhouse with Glass Windows

Source: unsplash.com

Board and batten exteriors are standard in traditional farmhouses. To make it look “modern,” designers highly recommend black as the exterior paint. Nothing makes a structure look modern than painting it black. Aside from being simple and minimalist, it grabs people’s attention from the fact that the exterior is made of board and batten, which are typical features of a traditional farmhouse.

In the photo above, the designer painted both walls, window trims, and roof black. It added glass windows too—instead of traditional window styles—to make it look more contemporary.

2. Traditional Black Cottage


As mentioned, nothing makes a house or a building look modern than having black exterior. As such, if you still prefer a traditional look for your farmhouse yet also want to add a touch of contemporary features, then painting the walls black should help.

3. Black Meets White


Modern designs today are all about minimalism. Whether it is the features or the color’s theme, it is best to keep everything below three or two features and color.

4. Wood Log Cabin Exterior in Dark Brown


While wood logs are typically seen as the exterior in cabins and cottages, it makes a great exterior for farmhouses too. You can either use its natural color which is light brown, or you can cover it using paint with a darker tone. As shown in the sample above, the exterior is pained in dark brown and has white trims and roofing.  

5. A-frame Black Rustic Cottage


A-frame exterior is a popular and modern design commonly used in cabins and cottages. It is a tall structure with extremely steep roofing which makes it look like the letter “A.” The style alone is already contemporary. But if you want to add more modern features, painting the roof black and adding glass doors and windows with white trim—just like the photo above—would be perfect.

6. Simple Black Farmhouse with Red Roofing


Combining two strong colors such as bright red and black can make a great color combination. Black, just like white, is very versatile and can be mixed with almost all shades in the color wheel. It makes a great color to partner with deep, brick-red too. The combination exudes a dramatic and moody vibe.

7. Board and Batten with Cobblestone Exterior


Combining board and batten with cobblestone is also a great exterior design to experiment with your farmhouse. Both elements may exude traditional vibes. But then, again, using black paint for the walls would change it.

8. New Meets Old


Using contrasting colors for the house’s exterior also gives off a modern vibe. As the photo above shows, you can make a bungalow-type farmhouse look modern by painting the walls in deep or charcoal black while the wood-clad windows (and the door’s trim) are painted in white. 

Painting the roof red would make the exterior color pop even more too.

9. Board and Batten Siding with Yellow Trim


Board and batten siding has been one of the key elements in building a farmhouse. And while people often associate it with the “classic look,” its rustic and chic aesthetic gives a contemporary vibe as well. It is particularly noticeable if painted with a minimalist color like black.

In the sample photo above, the designer used a bright yellow for the windows’ trim to make the color exterior stand out more.

10. Blue-gray Siding


Black may be a great minimalist and modern color, but deep and darker tones can help you make your farmhouse look modern too. Using blue-gray sidings, for example, gives a mellow and calming look. Add a darker shade of blue as an accent. 

In the photo, the designer painted the window trims dark blue. The gable for the mini front porch is ornamented with washed bricks too rather than wood panels, which creates a beautiful contrast against the siding’s deep coastal blue.  

11. Wood Panels in Dark Brown


Brown in a slightly lighter hue is great to blend with pale green as well. The sleek yet elegant color combination is quite unique and often seen in houses with large gardens or greeneries. Both colors have a soft and warm tone and are generally not overwhelming for the eyes to look at.

12. Light and Dark Brown Exterior


Combining different shades of brown goes well as a house color exterior too. Light brown’s cool yet soft tone is easy on the eyes. It is simple and sleek as well. Best for houses with modern elements. 

13. Wood and Stone Exterior 


Mixing classic and contemporary elements is what designers often do to create a modern look for farmhouses. Notice the features in the sample design shown above.

As you can see, the designer combined cobblestones with board and batten as the outer wall. The roofing is not built entirely using metal or asphalt shingles too—but both. It comes with large wood-clad glass windows too which is a primary element in contemporary house designs.

Most importantly, the designer used two modern and contrasting colors which are gray and white. The sliding barn-style window, moreover, is painted in muted yellow.

14. Two-tone Farmhouse


The features in the sample design lean more towards contemporary style rather than the classic styles of countryside farmhouses. As you can see, the designer used cedar posts built on cobblestones for the front porch. The large wood-clad windows and asphalt shingles roofing offset the traditional aesthetic of board and batten used for the sidings and gables too.

Most importantly, the designer applied a minimalist color theme for using one color only.

15. Woody Farmhouse Exterior


Metal roofing is a common element in traditional barns and farmhouses. To balance the exterior design without completely taking off these elements, experiment with painting it with colors that have deep tones. In the sample photo above, the designer painted it deep gray. Experiment with building a front porch with exposed wood beams too. It serves as an accent and adds a modern flair. 

You can also further add modern elements such as wood-clad windows painted in charcoal black. In the sample photo above, the board and batten sidings are painted in bright gray which creates a beautiful contrast with the windows’ black trim.

16. Classic Modern Exterior


This almost one tone house exterior design is an excellent design for homeowners who want a completely modern aesthetic for their farmhouses. Large glass windows, metal roofing, and a mini front porch are common contemporary features. 

17. Board and Batten Siding with Wood Accents


From the windows to the front porch, the designer took advantage of wood’s natural stain and used it as the accents. In the sample photo above. The combination of traditional and modern elements made the farmhouse look stylish as well. The designer also used two modern and contrasting colors which are gray and brown.

18. Rustic Barnhouse


Who says you cannot make a barn house look “modern” without adding contemporary elements? Rustic house designs are the new trends. In the sample photo, the barn house has gabled roofing. Its outer wall, on the other hand, is covered with faded wood panels, which immensely gives a rustic farmhouse design. You can add large windows too, which is commonly seen in modern farmhouses.

19. Three-tone Wooden Exterior


Playing with colors is one key to making farmhouses look chic and modern. The sample design above, for example, is a mix of dark brown, white, and muted coastal blue. White paint is a typical feature in contemporary house designs. The same goes with muted tones.

Essentially, painting the board and batten siding with modern shades can effectively offset its traditional look.

20. Dark Brown Exterior


For a minimalist yet recognizable house exterior paint, using one tone rather than two is a great idea. And deep chocolate brown would be an excellent choice. In the photo shown above, you can see that both sidings and trims are painted with the same color. 

21. Brick, Wood, and Stucco Exterior


This farmhouse is built by combining traditional materials like bricks, hardwood, and stucco.

22. Mysterious Black Farmhouse


Nothing makes a house look modern than having an exterior painted in black. As such, if you still prefer a traditional look for your farmhouse yet also want to add a touch of contemporary features, then painting the walls black would help. 

23. Wood Exterior in Strong Colors


Want to have a simple yet bold farmhouse exterior? Then experiment by combining two bold colors such as red and black. In the sample above, black was used as the backdrop while red was used the accent. The color schemes are both great for structures with traditional- and contemporary-leaning elements. 

24. Deep Black


If you prefer a classic look for your farmhouse but also want to add a touch of contemporary features, then start by painting the walls black.

25. Black, White and Red Exterior


Make your house standout strongly by combining two strong colors such as dark red and black. Black is a flexible and blends well with any color, including all shades of red. In the sample above, deep red was used as the backdrop while black was used the accent. The color schemes are both great for structures with traditional- and contemporary-leaning elements. 

26. Modern Country Farmhouse


While some folks prefer to keep the classic look of country farmhouses, some want to completely turn it into a contemporary country farmhouse—just like the two-story, five-tone house shown above!

The designer used board and batten for the sidings (classic), while the roofing is a mix of metal and asphalt shingles (modern and classic). And to offset the fact it used classic farmhouse materials, the designer mixed five contemporary colors that are commonly in houses modern houses today namely white, black, gray, beige, and brown.  The white sidings and black windows, for instance, create a beautiful contrast.

To complete its countryside aesthetic, the designer added a wide front porch built on a stone foundation.

27. Two-tone Farmhouse


Minimalism is a common theme in contemporary house exteriors—just like the photo above! The designer did not integrate more than three elements but rather stayed true to the farmhouses’ classic look. Using two colors (white and purple-brown) also attributed to its minimalistic, modern look. The soft yet bright tone of the white paint created a beautiful contrast against the purple-brown siding too.

28. Country Living in the Suburbs


The key to creating a classic yet modern exterior design is balance. As you can notice, the elements in the sample farmhouse design are a combination of classic and contemporary. The roofing, for example, is built using metal and asphalt shingles. The outer wall is a mix of concrete and board and batten siding too. And to complete its country-living aesthetic, the designer added a wraparound porch—take note of the exposed wood beams too—built on a stone foundation. 

29. Simple Gray-Blue Bungalow


Contemporary design today is all about minimalism. Just like the sample house exterior above, keep the features neat. Used a two to three elements only. In terms of color, two contrasting or complementing tones will work well. 

30. Modern Chocolate Farmhouse


In this design, the exterior’s color theme greatly influenced the farmhouse’s overall modern look. It used chocolate brown for the roofing, windows, and doors. On the other hand, the siding is painted in what seems like washed chocolate brown. It used glass windows too which is common in modern house exteriors.

31. Farmhouse with a Modern Twist


Unlike the previous exterior designs, this one gives off a classic farmhouse and a couple of modern flairs. The two cupolas on the top of the metal roof create a distinct style seen in countryside houses only. Large, wood-cased glass windows, on the other hand, exude a modern aesthetic. The deep brown paint used in both roofing and wall gave a modern twist as well.

32. Modern Coastal Cottage


Wood panels as siding is a classic farmhouse exterior. To make it look modern, paint it in muted blue with a hint of white. Not only does it give a contemporary vibe, but it also gives a coastal cottage aesthetic.

33. Wood and Cobblestone Exterior


Wood panels and cobblestones make a great combination for a modern house exterior too. Adding large, symmetrical glass windows further gives that contemporary aesthetic too.

34. Contemporary Two-tone Farmhouse


While black is a great color to make a classic farmhouse look modern, painting your house gray in deep tones can do the trick too. Although keep in mind that paint color alone is not enough to create a contemporary design for farmhouses.

Notice the elements incorporated in the sample design above. The designer used metal and asphalt shingles for the roof—although the latter was used more. It added a small front porch too with brown cedar posts built on cobblestone, serving as an accent. Lastly, it incorporated large wood-clad glass windows which are commonly seen in contemporary house exterior designs.

35. Wood-Clad Windows Against Fading Wood Siding


Fading in wood panels is inevitable. And while it is best to replace it, there is still a way to renovate an old farmhouse without replacing them. Just like the photo above, the designer added wood-clad windows painted in white. The color makes a perfect contrast against the natural color of the fading wood siding. It used black metal roofing with a modern pattern imprinted on it too.

Editorial Contributors
Elisabeth Beauchamp

Elisabeth Beauchamp

Senior Staff Writer

Elisabeth Beauchamp is a content producer for Today’s Homeowner’s Lawn and Windows categories. She graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with degrees in Journalism and Linguistics. When Elisabeth isn’t writing about flowers, foliage, and fertilizer, she’s researching landscaping trends and current events in the agricultural space. Elisabeth aims to educate and equip readers with the tools they need to create a home they love.

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Lora Novak

Senior Editor

Lora Novak meticulously proofreads and edits all commercial content for Today’s Homeowner to guarantee that it contains the most up-to-date information. Lora brings over 12 years of writing, editing, and digital marketing expertise. She’s worked on thousands of articles related to heating, air conditioning, ventilation, roofing, plumbing, lawn/garden, pest control, insurance, and other general homeownership topics.

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