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A Sun-Soaked California Farmhouse

A Sun-Soaked California Farmhouse

Farmhouse dining room with gallery wall and farmhouse details.
Written by Elizabeth Falkenberg
Photography by Bret Gum
Styling by Victoria Van Vlear

When your home doesn’t have farmhouse architecture, it’s up to interior design to fill in the details. Homeowner Samantha Young is a California native, but she prefers farmhouse design over the modern style popular in her home state.

So, Samantha and her husband, John, have creatively transformed their traditionally built house into a California farmhouse that embraces rustic style. It’s become the perfect haven in which to raise their two young sons.

Small living room with gray couch, throw pillows, patterned rug, and farmhouse details.
Samantha’s husband, John, designed and built the perfect coffee table for their living room space. Samantha and John are able to customize their home by using their talents for DIY projects like this.

Flexibility in Farmhouse Details

One of Samantha’s favorite elements of farmhouse style is the possibility for variation. Not only has she found she can modify the farmhouse décor in her home from season to season, but the style as a whole has also been a platform for her to personalize.

Samantha’s mother, who introduced her to interior design at a young age, is also a fan of farmhouse style. Samantha has added her own rustic twist to the look that finds the sweet spot between coziness and openness in her California farmhouse.

Above the mantel is a statement clock. Large and eye-catching pieces like this add character to spaces with more neutral colors.

As the Instagrammer behind Rustic Home Momma, Samantha shares her enthusiasm for home décor with an enthusiastic online community. When she first joined with the online community Instagram, she “never knew it had this amazing home décor community” and was amazed to find it. Her Instagram account has been a gratifying creative outlet for her, and she loves sharing her philosophy of home décor with others.

Styling Small Spaces in the California Farmhouse

The size of the home, at 1,575 square feet, initially posed challenges for the family of four. Wanting to make the most of their living space, they created a plan to make their home look and feel spacious and inviting.

Kitchen sink below a window surrounded by a custom sign, greenery, and farmhouse details.
Samantha’s friend made the custom “Groceries & Dry Goods” sign for the kitchen, and Samantha adds interest to her kitchen by incorporating fresh greenery.

The most important part of the plan was keeping the design palette “light and bright,” so as not enclose any of the rooms further. Without farmhouse elements built into the architecture of the house itself, Samantha has incorporated California farmhouse flair through small décor pieces and furniture details.

In their master bedroom, Samantha and John blend creams and whites for a neutral look. Samantha chooses throw pillows with writing on them, much like the signs throughout her home

But she’s also conscious of striking a balance between charming ornamentation and functional simplicity to keep her smaller house clean and uncluttered.

Guest bathroom with pedestal sink, open shelves, and farmhouse details.
Samantha’s bathroom is filled with open shelves and cozy details to create a cohesive farmhouse look.

One way Samantha ensures this balance is through open shelving. It allows her to show off her décor in an organized fashion and also keeps these items out of reach of her small children.

Be Bright, Be Bold

The light whites and creams Samantha uses throughout her home allow her statement pieces to truly stand out. She is selective about her use of color, so details like her bright turquoise door and cushions attract the right amount of attention.

Bathtub with subway tile, shelf, and farmhouse details.
Filled with a neutral subway tile and a fun custom sign, this bathtub is the perfect amount of relaxing and exciting.

Her most-used statement items are her wooden wall signs. Employed in most of her rooms, sign art adds a consistent, homey touch. Outside her laundry room, for example, Samantha hangs a sign she designed and made herself.

Samantha’s home has a low profile in her neighborhood, but the inside of her home is something special.

For Samantha, the process of making décor and changing up her spaces is just as enjoyable as seeing the end results of her creative labor.

See Also
mid century modern farmhouse hutch fall themed

Dining room with farmhouse table, kitchen opening, and farmhouse details.
Samantha has kept things simple in their dining room and let the signs do the talking. She adds some additional color with green chairs at the ends of the table and keeps the middle chairs a neutral cream.

Porch Decor Tips & Tricks

Samantha’s porch has received countless compliments from neighbors and guests. Here are three tips for making yours the most popular in the neighborhood.

Front porch with bench, throw pillows, plants, and farmhouse details.
Samantha commissioned a custom “Porch” sign from her friend Margaret, who owns NELsRusticDesigns Etsy shop. Personalized details like these have a big impact on the design of outdoor spaces as visible as your front porch.

1. DOOR COLOR. While Samantha is a self-described lover of the classic red front door, she wanted to be more adventurous and go with a color that would be more distinctive. She settled on turquoise, which complements the yellow of the rest of her home’s exterior.

2. RESILIENT PLANTS. When life gets busy, the last thing you want to be thinking about is keeping your front porch plants alive. Samantha advises adding easy-to-care-for greenery, such as ferns, which do well in the shade and don’t require too much work.

3. SEASONAL DÉCOR. Southern California life means Samantha and her family enjoy warm weather nearly year-round. Nevertheless, she loves to change up her front porch to match the seasons. She recommends varying key decorative pieces but maintaining a consistent color palette. For example, she uses turquoise as a staple color because of her front door, and the color works surprisingly well with red for Christmas, orange for Halloween and pastels for spring.


Are you ready to give your porch a makeover yet? Get some more outdoor decorating tips here! And of course, don’t forget to follow us on InstagramFacebook and Pinterest to get your daily dose of farmhouse inspiration! 

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