Old Kentucky Barns Are Being Raided To Continue ‘Farmhouse Chic’ Trend

Kentucky police are warning the public that a disturbing trend is taking hold in their state in which wood is being stolen from older barns so that they can be used for farmhouse-inspired home design and décor projects.

Police say that the increase in theft of weathered barn wood has gotten so bad that buyers are asking wood sellers to document their assets in a W-9 form, to ensure that they are not purchasing stolen timber. While this is an issue in many states like Illinois, Indiana, Ohio and Tennessee, it is particularly bad in Kentucky because the state has “more old barns per square mile than any other state.”

Experts say that these thefts are likely to get worse because modern farmhouse-chic is only getting more popular.

“It’s here and it’s popular. Especially in Kentucky,” said Leslie Lewis Sheets, owner of LL&A Interior Design. “If it’s weathered, it takes on the brown tones, the grays, some washed paint that may have been applied. The texture. It’s welcoming. It’s warm.”

Police say that it is very difficult to catch or track down those who are behind stealing the wood.

“The thing is trying to prove it, because you don’t know when it was taken,” Cumberland County Sheriff Scot Daniels Daniels said.

Social media users have been quick to condemn the people responsible for these thefts.

“How big a jerk do you have to be to steal people’s barn wood to decorate your house instead of, you know, paying for it?” one social media user said, with another adding, “That is a shame. It is easy to treat new (cheap) wood to look vintage/’distressed’ with finish, no need to steal.”

“This is sad!” a third user added. “Stop stealing people’s barnwood!”


COMMENT POLICY: We have no tolerance for comments containing violence, racism, vulgarity, profanity, all caps, or discourteous behavior. Thank you for partnering with us to maintain a courteous and useful public environment!