Exploring our roots, down on the farm.

Ever since we developed our first Belfast sink all those years ago, any farmhouse or country cottage worth its salt had to have a Shaws sink.  These days our sinks can be found featured in all sorts of architectural and interior design projects from Park Lane penthouses and Brooklyn brownstones to Bondi Beach beach houses. We love this diversity and encourage you to share the creative ways you use our products with us. However, in this Journal entry, we would like to go back to our roots and take a look at the resurgence and evolution of the farmhouse kitchen.

The evolution of the farmhouse kitchen.

Whilst trying to retain the design principles and practical benefits of a farmhouse kitchen, its design has been refined by those who have taken the look beyond the five-barred gate, down the lane, and into the mainstream.

Craftsmanship, durability, natural materials, and functionality are still highly valued by a new wave of design-savvy, eco-centric homeowners who are turning back to traditional values, blending them seamlessly with modern living and contemporary design. The result is a lighter, brighter kitchen, filled with the same practicality and sensibilities as before, but more eclectic and considered, in terms of design. This latest interpretation is now as popular in New York as it is in Yorkshire.

So, how can you apply the latest interpretation of the farmhouse kitchen style to your own home?

Value the art of Craft.
Choose well-constructed products made with traditional techniques for genuine authenticity. These will reward you with a lifetime of service, only looking better as they age into their surroundings.
Embrace the principles, not the look.

Embrace the principles and values that underpin the style, without being  a purist. Don’t be afraid to ‘contemporise’ and personalise the look by adding your own twist. Choose things you like that are well made and handcrafted using traditional techniques, but are not necessarily traditional in appearance.

Blocks of colour.

Just like the countryside around it, the modern farmhouse kitchen embraces colour. Surfaces and walls can be painted to match colourful cabinets to create monotone spaces. Colourfully flecked Terrazzo Marble can be used as a contemporary alternative to the wooden butcher’s block work surfaces.

Farmhouse design classics…

There are iconic pieces that many people would say you must have to achieve the farmhouse look. A range cooker (to some, that can only mean an  Aga) is lovely only if you have the room and are prepared to adapt the way you cook. No compromises are required, however, for a Shaws Belfast sink. This design classic looks stunning in any kitchen and was traditionally the place to stand and chat in the kitchen, earning it the nickname, the ‘Jawbox’. It’s the original, and we would say, still the finest in the world after 125 years. Alternatively, you can mix it up with a Ribchester with its fluted front, or a classic Double Bowl, which offers even greater practicality.