The Transition of Traditions

Cape Cod Home  /  Winter 2022 /

Writer: Susanna Graham-Pye / Photographer: Amber Jane Barricman 

We wanted something modern that would fit in today’s world. Not an old-school, antique farmhouse. Cape Cod Modern Farmhouse Captures The Past & The Future with Elegance As the name implies, the farmhouse has its roots in the practical needs of those living an agrarian life—function over frills, where the needs of body and soul are fed—a warm kitchen and a place to lay your head. Today’s modern farmhouse style taps into those elements of home as places that feed the heart, all the while giving a nod to nostalgic design elements that are pleasing and functional. Early modern farmhouses found their way out of farm country into America’s subdivision landscapes thanks to the Modern Home Sears Roebuck & Co. sold through their catalog—a mail order that made the American dream come true for tens of thousands—some estimates say as many 70,000—American families. The Modern Farmhouse, available from Sears from around 1910 to 1930, featured many of the design elements associated with today’s modern farmhouse style, porches, front and back, a gabled facade.  Today’s modern farmhouse combines many older, familiar architectural elements, but there is also much that is a newer take on current lifestyles with clean, bright, open interiors, absent the chopped-up spaces popular in the latter part of the last century. In Brewster, the remodel and expansion that architect Erik Tolley designed for one family is a perfect example of the modern farmhouse of the twenty-first century. “We approached Erik about creating a home that had a farmhouse feel,” one of the homeowners explains, as he adds their family home was to be located on more than 10 acres of land. “With that kind of space, we wanted it to fit the area. You know a farmer’s porch, a country feel—we wanted that whole look, but also a…

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Susanna Graham-Pye