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How To Mix Primitive & Farmhouse Decor

How To Mix Primitive & Farmhouse Decor

Posted by Primitive Touch Decor on 25th Mar 2021

With so many great decorative styles to choose from, why go with just one for your home? Luckily, with the right set of rules in mind, it's possible to mix your favorites and still get a great result.

Primitive and farmhouse decor are both great design concepts to discuss for this idea. They're also an excellent jumping-off point for beginners, as they both already borrow styles from one another and share some overlapping elements. Picking your favorites from both categories is likely to create a harmonious look overall, so there's definitely room to experiment.

Interested in learning more about mixing primitive decor and farmhouse style? Keep reading to learn our top tips for incorporating both in your home.

What are the Key Differences Between Primitive and Farmhouse Decor?

Farmhouse style is based on the classic American farmhouse, with a light and airy feel as well as warm, homey accents that create a simplistic atmosphere. Just as the name suggests, this decorative style aims to recreate what you'd find if you walked into a farmhouse in the 1700s or 1800s.

Primitive decor is quite similar to farmhouse style, but with earthier colors and a darker overall aesthetic. Think rustic elements, antiques, dark wooden finishes, Americana, cast iron, and burnished metals.

Both primitive and farmhouse decor have the same underlying rustic appeal, making them wonderful candidates for mixing styles. Farmhouse tends to have a cleaner, more family-friendly look, whereas primitive decor focuses more on an antique feel throughout. Depending on your preferences, you can choose what you like best from both categories and it's likely to fit together harmoniously.

Overlapping Pieces in Primitive and Farmhouse Decor

Given the similarities, there is some overlap between these two decorative styles. This means that you can rely on a few staple items that can seamlessly fit into your style scheme, no matter which one you choose as your dominant element. Below are a few pieces that you can freely incorporate.


Quilts are a big part of both primitive and farmhouse decor. When accenting farmhouse decor, they give off that perfect "homey" look that suits the style so well. With primitive decor, they fit in perfectly with the antique look and feel of the room.

Braided Rugs

In a way that is similar to quilts, braided rugs bridge the gap between the classic country and antique style that dominates each category respectively.

Baskets and Other Woven Items

When mixing primitive and farmhouse decor, you can't go wrong with baskets. As an added bonus, these are a stylish way to store things and eliminate clutter in your house.

Industrial Lighting

Edison bulbs, lanterns, and hanging lamps are all great choices for mixing primitive with farmhouse decor. They're simple yet industrial, so they should work well in any design scheme.

Mason Jars

Mason jars are simplistic yet rustic, making them perfect pieces for either style. Use these to store food and small items, or you could even put a tealight in them for ambiance.

Mixing Primitive and Farmhouse: Where to Start

Now that we've gone over some staple pieces to include in your decorating, it's time to pick which element you prefer. Do you want a warm, earthy, antique feel? Or are you going for something cleaner, lighter, and airier?

If you're repainting your walls, simple white looks great for farmhouse. Warm browns, goldenrods, burgundies, or beiges work best for a primitive look. Keep these in mind as your selecting pieces and colors for your home.

General Guidelines for Mixing Decorative Styles

You can mix primitive and farmhouse decor with relative ease, as the two are somewhat related, but you can actually mix just about any decorative style too. All you have to do is keep a few general rules in mind to help strike the perfect balance, no matter what styles you're working with.

Here are the top guidelines to follow for mixing decorative styles:

  1. Create balance within your two decorative styles. For example, if you're working with farmhouse decor, don't cluster all of your pieces in one part of the room. Instead, try to keep everything evenly distributed to create a sense of visual equilibrium within the space.
  2. Choose a dominant style. Pick either primitive decor or farmhouse decor and decorate the majority of the room with pieces that fit the style. Then, accent with smaller, more subtle pieces in the second style.
  3. Find a focal piece and coordinate colors around it. One of the quickest and simplest ways to create a coordinating decorative style is by starting with one key item. It could be a painting, an interesting piece of furniture, or any other decorative piece.
  4. Choose a warm, neutral, or cool color palette. Pick one and stick with it to create the vibes you're going for within the room. Mixing colors across these color families can throw the theme off-balance, so it's better to work with one per room.
  5. Travel outside your comfort zone. You'll never know what you can come up with if you play things safe, so don't be afraid to go bold! After all, you can always change anything you don't like. Why not experiment?

If you've ever experimented with "pattern play" or mixing patterns in your home and wardrobe, this concept is pretty similar to that one. Basically, you don't want to let the two styles clash, but rather treat one as an accent to the other. Take this with a grain of salt, of course, because the most important thing is finding what looks good to you.

Finding Your Personal Style

When you're decorating your home, different decorative styles can serve as inspiration. In the end, though, it's all about what you personally like best. Now that you know more about mixing primitive and farmhouse decor, you'll be able to find that balance that works best for you.

Check out our full line of home decor pieces to start perfecting your primitive farmhouse decor today!