If you’ve been considering building a barndo or rehabbing a space you already own into one, there is much to think about. This guide will cover the basics of a barndo and its benefits before getting into some barndo ideas that can make your space shine!
What’s a Barndominium Interior?
A barndo interior is the inside of a barndominium, which is a barn converted to living space. Barndo interior can reference the décor, layout, and features of the space that contribute to its overall design. Just as any home can have a design trend, barndos can follow specific sets of design features.
It’s important to consider your barndo’s interior early on in the process as it will contribute greatly to the overall livability of the space. Because barndos are usually open spaces, a chaotic or mismatched barndo interior will be easily identifiable and hard to face day-to-day.
Common Barndo Interior Styles
Because of a barndo’s origins, there are usually a few interior styles people tend to follow. One of the most common barndo styles includes rustic features, such as exposed wood and unpolished fixtures.
Another popular barndo interior style is a mixture of rustic and updated, such as a modern farmhouse scheme. Features of modern farmhouse include neutral colors, stainless steel appliances, and fun, modern lighting.
Aside from a foundation interior design style, another major component of barndo interiors is the accent and art pieces. For example, many barndos will choose to have pieces that represent country living, as this is where most barns are located.
Barndominium Interior Ideas
Below are a few ideas for how to make your barndo space special! Regardless of your personal stylistic choice or necessities for quality of life, we’ve rounded up the best barndo ideas.
1. Adding a Loft
If your barndo is a blank space, consider building in a loft or upstairs living as well. Not only will it drastically improve the space available for your family, but it can be a sly way of introducing stunning architecture that wows.
Whether it be a grand staircase or rich wood beams supporting the floor and accenting the main living space.
2. Cathedral Ceilings
Emphasizing your barndo’s cathedral ceiling is a great way to follow the natural beauty and uniqueness of a barn’s structure. You can choose to panel the entire ceiling with wood, or simply add beams and accents to highlight it.
Some barndo owners will choose to ignore the natural slope of the ceiling, simply leaving it as attic space or not using it at all in favor of a second story. But we recommend making it the forefront of your design plan!
3. Industrialize Décor
You might expect a warm and stripped-down barndo that matches simple country living.
However, barndos can be customized to individual tastes just as much as any space.
Industrial decor works quite well in these spaces because it is both unexpected and compliments the bare bones of a country landscaped barndo.
4. Muted Wood Flooring
While you can choose a loud print for the floor that garners attention, nothing makes a statement quite like muted flooring.
Recommendations include a wood, or mock wood with grey hues, or tans and warm colors that compliment the space rather than work against it.
If you want a pop of color on your floors, consider saving extravagant tile patterns for the kitchen or bathrooms. You might also consider rugs to help break up any monotonous spots.
5. Peel and Stick Accent Walls
You may not want to make any permanent changes to your barndo’s walls, and luckily, you don’t need to. Whether you’re looking to add variety without breaking the bank, or for another choice, temporary solutions work best.
Peel and stick backsplashes, shiplap, wallpaper and similar materials offer a new design minus the cost and permanency.
6. A Master Retreat
When planning your barndo, don’t neglect the master getaway. Consider adding an extravagant soaking tub to the bathroom or a fireplace in the bedroom to keep you warm and double as charming decor.
With such an open space, it’s important to localize and make each portion of the barndo feel warm and cozy. Spending some extra time on your master area is perfect.
7. Forgo Wood as a Forefront
You’ll often find barndos, and even farmhouse-style homes, to have wood structures as one of the home’s focal decor options. While beautiful, highlighting wood pieces may not be your style and for that, it is recommended that you design the space as you would any other style.
Allow the wood to act as it was intended, for support, and instead, cover wooden features that distract from your design vision. For example, the above photos is a barndo, yet it is extremely modern and avoids the typical farmhouse wood-centered design.
8. Game Room or Movie Space
If you can, try to squeeze in some space for entertainment. Lofts make a great area to do this, but the possibilities are endless. Mixing living space with fun is a great way to maximize your barndo.
Consider adding a foosball or air hockey table, or even add a projector screen on the wall to project movies. You’ll need to work with your barndo’s layout, but, you may be able to place the screen so that it is easily viewed from around the entire barndo.
9. Choose a Theme
All of the best themes lean into the barndo’s environment. Whether country, industrial, or even nature-driven, it’s recommended that you choose a theme to work with before diving into the decor.
An epic theme can tie together a place that otherwise might be scattered, especially when how open it is makes everything easy to be seen at once! In the above picture, the barndo has a country cabin theme – perfect for a Texas barndo.
10. Statement Pieces in the Main Living Areas
Most barndos are open spaces that can be monotonous to look at upon entering. With single-layered designs as far as the eye can reach, it might get repetitive and boring.
A focal or statement piece might be the perfect way to break up your barndo and add a wow factor. Options include a floor-to-ceiling fireplace (particularly a beautiful stone), a massive chandelier, or even an epic kitchen island that signifies the transition into a new room.
11. Garage Door-Lined Wall
Though teetering on the edge of interior and exterior, you might consider your barndo with major accent walls. Garage doors, specifically glass doors can be opened in the summer, provide endless sunshine, and epic views, even when shut.
This option will most likely complement modern and traditional barndo design plans, but it can be adjusted to work with any space. In the photo above, it’s being used as an exercise space, perfect for staying entertained.
12. Windows, Windows, Windows
Where you can, add as many windows as possible to help shed some light on your space. Most barns that are pre-built come with little windows and thus can be dark and dim. Even if you add a few windows up top in a loft-styled barndo, light will be cast throughout the entire space.
Adding windows allows the natural flow of sun rising and sunsetting throughout the day can lead to reduced energy bills. Of course, windows brightening a space leads to comfort too!
13. Hidden Storage
There is no better way to maximize on space than by utilizing dead space. Under the stairs are often neglected, but they offer a ton of benefits for extra storage, or an extra place to display décor that makes your barndo shine.
You can choose to add discrete drawers, such as pictured above, which can be used for shoes in an entry space or extra blankets in the living room. The possibilities are endless!
14. Epic Staircases
If your space is fairly muted without much of a design lead, there are still ways to introduce character and style. One fun way is to install a fun staircase that catches people’s eyes for one reason or another.
In the photo above you’ll find an iron staircase that twirls beyond what a typical staircase would. As such, it can provide an optical illusion and a bit of fun.
15. Interior Dutch Doors
Using Dutch doors inside the home creates a sometimes-necessary barrier, but also keeps things open. Making sure not to seal things off in a sometimes-cramped space is the best tool to avoid making the overall feel be cramped.
The photo above shows a space focused on light and modernity. By putting up a divider like a full door, you may detract from the overall design and dim the space. Another option to help transition between rooms is glass doors or French doors.
16. Sunroom Expansion
Whether you’re remodeling a structure or building yours from the ground up, a sunroom is a great addition. And it doesn’t need to be massive to reap the benefits. This is the perfect retreat at the end of a long day and is beneficial for many reasons. It’s also a great opportunity to introduce more light into the structure as barndos often have few windows, unless manually added.
Be sure to plan for some large windows that allow gorgeous views in all directions. And if you can help it, model your sunroom to be on the most favorable side of the house, especially if building from scratch, so that you can catch sunsets, sunrises, or both!
17. Built-in Organization
Not all barndos are created with the exclusive purpose of living in them like a normal home. Sometimes, people want a barndo for work and play. To keep things organized, be sure to implement a great tool/storage center.
The picture above shows a structure that allows tools to hang on the wall, which is a great space saver. Why have tool chests and storage bins lying around when you can combine décor and practicality in a way like this? The best part is, it’s not difficult to purchase or build one of these hanging structures yourself.