Most popular farmhouse style sinks and advice for selecting the best farmhouse sink for your kitchen
Farmhouse sinks are all the rage these days. And, they aren’t just for farmhouses…they seem to work for virtually all styles of decor. They’ve become mainstream as customers love their style and versatility as well as their ergonomic benefits.
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If you’re curious (or in a hurry)
It’s an excellent stainless steel farmhouse sink specifically designed to prevent scratches and chips. It’s light weight and easy to use, and you’ll also find that it’s also one of the most affordable farmhouse sinks you’ll find online.
If you can get it for under $250, grab it. That’s one heck of a deal on a GOOD farmhouse sink! (Most are priced at $500-$1000 or more). (check current price).
What are farmhouse style sinks?
Farmhouse sinks, sometimes called apron front sinks, are sinks that have deeper basins and the front of the sink is exposed for easier use. These sinks jut out a bit from the cabinets so that if water drips or splashes they don’t damage the cabinets.
This type of sink is usually quite large because it is designed to be used for multiple functions and cater to the needs of a large family.
Farmhouse sinks have become more popular due to their functionality, charm and elegance as well as their nostalgic tie to the past reminding us of simpler times. And, of course as farmhouse style decor has become chic and stylish, the farmhouse sink has seen a massive resurgence.
Note: Most of these pictures are clickable, if you’d like to find out more info about the product.
Origin of Farmhouse and apron sinks
Farmhouse style sinks originated in the late 1600s in Britain and Ireland at a time when there was no running water. They were a place to hold large amounts of water which was fetched from nearby wells and lakes.
Farmhouse sinks make it more comfortable to prepare food, wash dishes. In the past, they have even been used to wash clothes and as a place to bathe babies.
Advantages of Farmhouse sinks. Why are they so popular?
- Ergonomics – One of the biggest advantages of farmhouse or apron sinks is that they are closer to you vs traditional sinks. There are no countertop or cabinets in the way. This makes it easier on your back as you don’t need to lean over the additional 4 or 5″. It’s especially easier for those that are height challenged (as I am) and people with back problems. It avoids the slouching and straining from reaching in and over the counter.
- Deeper and larger sinks – An added feature of farmhouse sinks is their added depth, so it accomodates large pots and the ability to soak several pots at once. These sinks are also a bit wider, so they are flexible for multiple functions and are especially useful if you have large family or many social gatherings.
- Easier to clean – In the same way that undermount sinks are easier to clean and don’t leave a dirt residue along the sink lines on the counter top, farmhouse style sinks are undermount, so it’s easy to wipe the counter tops directly into the sink without a mess.
- Provides a feeling of nostalgia – Farmhouse sinks also arouse positive nostalgic feelings. They can give a kitchen old world charm or even an industrial look. These feelings can be enhanced further with a country style or rustic style faucet (see below for where to find some) as well as farmhouse style cabinets, flooring or other decor..
- Variety of colors and finishes – You have the choice of white (fireclay or porcelain), stainless steel, copper, cast iron, concrete, soap stone. Due to the variety of colors and finishes, farmhouse sinks work well with a variety of kitchen styles and color schemes.
Types of surfaces for Farmhouse sinks
White Farmhouse sinks are the most popular and these are made of fireclay and porcelain
These are made of clay and are fired to an extreme high temperature. This makes the sink hard and incredibly durable. It also gives the sink its brilliant high shine. Fireclay sinks are resistant to scratches and chips. They are also easy to clean.
[Shop for fireclay sinks here]
Porcelain is very similar to fireclay. It’s a higher grade ceramic which is heated higher and longer (vs. a typical ceramic) making it denser and more durable than ceramic. But, it isn’t as durable as fireclay which is heated even higher. Porcelain sinks are more prone to discoloration as well as chipping.
[Shop for porcelain sinks here]
These sinks are affordable, durable and easy to clean. Stainless steel gives a more contemporary look to a kitchen and of course will match stainless steel appliances, so it creates a consistent color/surface for all of these items. Stainless steel doesn’t rust or chip and it’s non porous so it’s super easy to clean and it’s sanitary.
When you get a stainless steel sink, and I know this sounds counter-intuitive, you should get the lower gauge stainless steel (like 16) as they have higher corrosion resistance. The higher gauge ones (like 22 or higher) are thinner and dent more easily.
[Shop for stainless steel sinks here]
Copper sinks create an unexpected look in kitchens and work with some color schemes for a dramatic and striking look. The copper surface can be smooth or hammered. Over time, copper sinks develop a beautiful patina as it mixes and reacts with the elements. Some people love this; others feel it looks a bit dirty as it sometimes oxidizes a bit unevenly.
Soapstone farmhouse sinks are also available. And, if you are getting a soapstone counter top, you can have the sink match the counter top. These tend to be more expensive vs fireclay and stainless steel farmhouse sinks.
[Shop for soapstone sinks here]
Concrete apron sinks are rapidly becoming more popular for a more industrial look. Plus, gray is super hot in home decor now. Again, these can be matched with a concrete counter top or contrasted with a light quartz or granite counter.
[Shop for concrete sinks here]
Single vs double bowl Farmhouse sinks
Most people prefer single bowls rather than double bowl sinks because most don’t wash dishes and glasses that often, so one bowl is more practical for more practical than 2 as it can be used to clean big posts, baking sheets, large pans and even oven racks. Double bowls sometimes get in the way or make it challenging to fit these items in the sink.
As a side benefit, single bowls are easier to was a baby or small dog. And, single bowls are a bit less expensive.
Fluted Farmhouse sinks
You also have the option of getting a decorative front to your farmhouse sink. One way to do this is by choosing a fluted style that has some ridges.
[Shop for fluted farmhouse sinks here]
Considerations when choosing a Farmhouse style sink
- Sizing – Farmhouse sinks are usually both wider and deeper than a standard sink. Use a measuring tape to plot the size. And, don’t forget the depth. Most likely, your cabinets will need to be framed and adjusted underneath it. Be sure to do this BEFORE you order your cabinets. If you wait, you may find you have a mismatch and need to make some adjustments. Please note that if you have a very small kitchen (or a galley kitchen), there are smaller and deeper options available as well).
- Support – Most farmhouse sinks are heavy (and heavier vs a typical stainless steel sink). Make sure your cabinets have enough support.
- Try to avoid dark sinks with high gloss finishes – Like black cars, shiny black sinks show every bit of dust, water spots and scratches. They are very high maintenance. (Same goes with absolute black counter tops).
- Seal – The measurements of fireclay and porcelain farmhouse sinks can vary slightly (due to the kiln drying process), so the surfaces can be a bit uneven. These are natural characteristics of these sinks. But, it means that there may be slight gaps with the counter top where water can escape. After installation, it’s important that it’s correctly sealed around the edges and installed correctly. Choose someone with experience in this area.
Drawbacks of Farmhouse sinks
- Costs more – Farmhouse sinks tend to cost more than traditional sinks. The material is usually more expensive and the are usually some additional costs in installation, adjustments to the cabinet height (so that they fit properly) and sometimes some up-charges on cuts for the counter tops. Sometimes, the faucets cost a bit more (see below section on suggested faucet styles). You want to make sure you have an installer who is familiar with installing farmhouse sinks and getting the seal done correctly.
- Challenging to add farmhouse sinks to existing cabinetry – Often you need to replace the counter tops and reconfigure the cabinets in the sink area to accommodate a farmhouse sink (which is deeper). It’s much easier to install farmhouse sinks when you are starting fresh and redesigning the cabinets.
- They are a bit noisy – The hard surfaces of porcelain and fireclay sinks can be a bit noisy and far less forgiving than stainless steel sinks when you drop breakable items into them, so take special care when washing fine china and wine glasses.
- Can not be installed with laminate counter tops – This is probably obvious due to the edges (which won’t look right and won’t hold up). But, generally if you are installing a farmhouse sink, you would be replacing the counter top at the same time and would upgrade to a granite or quartz counter top.
The Top 5 Farmhouse sinks on Amazon
I have been amazed at how versatile Amazon has become, especially when it comes to home decor items. They generally have a wide variety of farmhouse sinks and tend to be less expensive than other stores. And, of course they have free shipping on virtually all items (including most farmhouse sinks.
So, I’ve gathered the top 5 most popular farmhouse sinks on Amazon. You can read the reviews there, too.
1. AKDY 33″ x 20″ x 9″ Single Bowls 18 Gauge Undermount Apron Handmade Stainless Steel Kitchen Sink. The finish on this is Brushed Stainless Steel and it’s just 30 pounds. It’s one of the less expensive and good value sinks out there.
2. Finefixtures Sutton 30″ Fireclay sink. This handcrafted fireclay sink is fired at 1600 degrees celsius for high durability. It’s 10 inches deep (so deeper than the sink above).
3. Zuhne 33 Inch Farmhouse Apron 60/40 Deep Double Bowl This sink is Stainless Steel 16 Gauge (so stronger it’s stronger than first one). This sink is available in both 33″ and 36″ widths. You can choose a straight apron or curved one. It’s a double bowl sink with 60% on the left side and 40% on the right. It’s also 10 inches deep.
This product is a great value as it’s super strong and also comes with a Zuhne exclusive lifetime warranty and comes with several FREE accessories including a 3 piece basket strainer scratch-prevention bottom grate, super absorbent towel, mounting hardware, template & manual to save you time & money looking for parts. It’s also extra quiet.
This product has over 90 customer reviews and is one of the highest rated farmhouse sinks on Amazon.
4. VIGO 30 inch Farmhouse Apron Sink
This Single Bowl Matte Stone Kitchen Sink is reversible, so you can choose if you want a flat front or a fluted/slotted front. It has curved corners for convenient cleaning. The depth is 9.625 inches.
It comes with a stainless steel strainer and cutting board.
5.. Antica 33 Farmhouse Apron Front Copper Kitchen Sink Single Bowl
This single bowl farmhouse sink is made of Copper with a hand-hammered finish. It’s a single bowl and is available in both 30 inch and 36 inch widths. The depth is 9.2 inches. It comes with noise and condensate controls as well as a lifetime warranty.
Farmhouse sink faucets
Be sure to buy a faucet that coordinates with a farmhouse sink. These are usually placed behind the sink and installed in the counter top. I will be adding some more info to this section soon. In the meantime, you use my suggestions below or you can search for farmhouse faucets here.
As you can see, there are many advantages to Farmhouse sinks, so it’s easy to see why they are rising in popularity. And, of course, as they grow, they are creating more and more varieties of sizes, shapes and styles for these apron sinks.
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Top Farmhouse sinks for kitchens | How to choose an apron sink
2 thoughts on “Top Farmhouse sinks for kitchens | How to choose an apron sink”
Hi Debbie: Great article, very well thought out and presented. You know, I bought a 60 / 40 stainless steel for my house and I love it. I chose a double sink because we often soak lettuce in one sink while using the other for rinsing stuff. The 60% side is plenty big enough for large pans. And I hear you on the gauge.
Elizabeth – That’s great to hear. Yes, you need to think things through on how a double sink works for you…for some, it’s absolutely perfect. Others sometimes realize after that this configuration doesn’t work work them. So glad you’re enjoying your farmhouse sink.