Written by Hugh Metcalf

How to give your kitchen a rustic twist

From beautiful timber to reclaimed materials with natural patina, these seven real kitchens are packed with plenty of ideas for homespun charm…

If your current kitchen lacks character, there’s probably nothing you want more than an atmospheric space to spend time in, and these rustic-style kitchens deliver this by the bucket-load.

Intriguing timber textures; warm and cosy colours; and lots of rich and interesting decoration, you really can’t beat this look for creating a homely charm.

Good Homes has picked seven of the best real spaces and examined at what they’ve done to achieve the look.

1. Wood cladding 

It may be a more unusual wall covering than paint or wallpaper, but wooden cladding can be super effective in helping create a warm, country-style atmosphere. You could look for reclaimed wood from local reclamation yards, or buy from a reputable retailer – many reclaimed flooring companies have branched out into cladding as it becomes a more popular style.

If you do buy new, look for wood with sustainable credentials. We love how this kitchen design from the Main Company unashamedly mixes different wood styles to create a rustic and eclectic look.

main company wood and concrete rustic kitchen with timber cladding

Photo: Main Company

2. Distressed textures 

Lisa Valencia was keen to ensure her modern kitchen cabinetry didn’t make the space feel too stark or clinical, so sourced reclaimed pieces that showcases wear and tear to balance out its modern nature.

‘Originally an old work bench from a Spitfire aeroplane factory, I bought it for £600 from Kempton antiques fair – even though we weren’t ready to renovate at that point,’ she explains.

Valencia kitchen with copper industrial tap and reclaimed island

Photo: John Rowley

3. Beautiful brickwork

Sharon Hornsby’s kitchen uses a matt finish Shaker style cabinetry and reclaimed wood cladding on the island to give her new space a rustic twist that ties in with the original exposed brickwork and beam in her home.

While it’s always best to play up your home’s natural charms, if you’re super keen on this look, you can buy brick slips – tile-like brick slices – in varying degrees of authentic crumbliness.

hornsby rustic brick and timber kitchen - goodhomesmagazine.com

Photo: Colin Poole

4. Raw wood cabinetry

If not wood on your walls, how about for your cabinetry? This Blakes London kitchen uses a beautifully textured wood with a striking grain, left exposed to bring an industrial twist to the room.

Green panelled kitchen wall with wood island - blakes london - goodhomesmagazine.com

Photo: Blakes London

5. Rustic styling

While the style of Bert & May‘s Library kitchen may be on the modern side, a distressed brass island helps to ground the cabinetry in the brand’s rustic showroom. They’ve styled up the space with equally rough and ready pieces, creating a really interesting contrast between old and new.

Bespoke teal kitchen with brass island and rustic furniture - bert and may - goodhomesmagazine.com

Photo: Bert & May

6. Reclaimed materials

The owner of this kitchen found some of her kitchen cupboard doors in a reclamation yard for just £40 – after all, you can’t beat a natural patina to texture to a design.

rustic country style cabin kitchen house tour - goodhomesmagazine.com

Photo: Colin Poole

7. Homely combinations

This designer collaboration kitchen by Sebastian Cox for deVOL marries a raw timber look and concrete work surfaces with a natural country stone. Where concrete could feel too harsh, and this rural stone too homely, they strike a balance with each other that works to elevate this kitchen design.

rustic sebastian cox kitchen from devol with timber cladding and stone effect walls

Photo: deVOL

Want to recreate the rustic look for yourself? Tweet us @goodhomesmag or post a comment on our Facebook page. Or, tag us in your own kitchen photos on Instagram, using the hashtag #ThisGoodHome