Rustic Done Right: A Look Inside The Harbinger Cafe


While rustic farmhouse design isn’t my personal decor style, I certainly have a great appreciation for it and can definitely understand why it has become so popular lately.  You can’t help but feel relaxed when you’re in a cozy rustic environment, which is why it is perfect for coffee shop decor.  The new kid on the block, The Harbinger Cafe, executed this style impeccably in order to make people feel at home at their King Street location.  If you’re looking to freshen up your own space, here are some tips to help you incorporate this design style into your own abode.

Photos courtesy of Abby Murphy Photo

Use a Parisian Palette

There is something about timeless cobalt blue and white that can simultaneously transport you to the French countryside and grandmother’s kitchen table. In addition to lots of fresh white chairs and walls, Harbinger incorporated blue and white china, vases and table linens to create a sense of homeyness without sacrificing style. These pieces also mix well with other colors for an easy change of scenery at your own table.  You could easily add bright yellow flowers to a blue and white vase or incorporate orange coffee mugs to spice up a weekend brunch.  Don’t forget to add plenty of plants; don’t you just love how they pop against all the white?


Repurpose With a Purpose

Think outside the box when it comes to DIY projects. Pinterest’s plethora of pallet projects are great and all, but there are tons of other materials you can bring back to life. The tin tiles that adorn the walls of The Harbinger were actually old roof shingles from a barn in Alabama. “They were very rusty but we loved the crest/shield shape so thought to soften them up with a little paint in Antique White that still allowed the texture of the rust to come through,” says owner Cameron Neal.

Shop Handmade

The owners did an impeccable job of curating pieces from incredible talents when it comes to decor. “I feel like when you team up with people who excel in their individual craft across the board, it’s bound to work out!  We just chose beautiful things and put them together — something that is so, so easy if you start with quality products,” says Cameron. Some of the makers involved are East Fork for the mugs, Landrum for the tables, BR Design for the macrame, a local lady who stitched up tote bags in antique ticking fabric, and a cool lighting store in Asheville for the “bloom” chandeliers.

Get Personal

The aluminum collection is courtesy of Cameron’s parents. “My mom passed away two years ago so I love having a piece of her with me. My Dad literally happens across a new item at his house each week that he drops off.” Mixing sentimental pieces with your store bought trinkets can really enhance shelf styling.

Have a look at some of my other coffee shop favorites that also offer a dose of ambiance to go along with your latte!


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About Liz Martin

Liz Martin began offering interior styling services in April 2015, then opened an online shop later that year. She offers products that help make every...

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