Monday, March 29, 2010

Continuing on my Spring Theme, A Spring Porch Makeover.

Well, I haven't done it yet. (Ahem. Obvious to anyone who has been to my house in the past two weeks. My front porch is definitely still in Winter Mode.)

But I was reading about doing a Porch Makeover (from The Inspired Room) and here are the steps she took when she re-did her porch.

Step One: Clean. I took everything off the porch and threw almost everything away. I hosed the porch and all the chairs down. I washed the cushions and swept the floor.

O.K. This definitely needs to be done here. On the plus side in terms of cleaning, the porch is small. However, I do wish that it was bigger.

Step Two: Make a Plan. I knew I wanted a comfy place to sit together…play games…talk…eat ice cream cones. I knew I couldn’t spend much money. I knew I already had lots of things here that I could use in a different way. I wanted a living room….but outside. I had mostly blues and greens already so I chose that palette to make it easier and less costly.

I'll need to think about this a little bit more. I've got plenty of outdoor furniture, but I need to place it in a way that looks more "room" like and less like I just set it there. I also need to use more accessories. I also need to call and find out how much it would cost to pour some cement to extend the back patio. And figure out how make the south part of the yard seem more like a private, adult space . . . But I digress.

Step Three: Accumulate. I gathered all my furniture I thought would work from the basement and other rooms in the house. At World Market I found the sisal rugs on clearance (you buy them by the 1′x9′ strip as wide as you want) and a cushion in my colors. It was the last cushion in that print and it had a small hole. I asked for a discount and they gave it to me for 50% off!We got a few things at Target and spray paint at Walmart. (Blue Ocean Breeze and Ivy Leaf…Krylon)

I'll have to look around. I'm thinking I don't have much. And I really don't have a much money to spend, and I sort of hate to shop.

Step Four: Work. I spray painted an old rocker we had from an auction, a metal table from a garage sale, an oak bench from our previous dining room set and a kids’ chair. I covered the top of the bench with oil cloth fabric that I already had…stapled it right on the back. I made three new pillows with scraps I had and a vintage tablecloth I have had for a long time. I strung big glass Christmas lights on one side of the porch. For the sitting area I took the electrical parts out of a big iron chandelier my friend gave me and wrapped it with white Christmas lights. They both turn on with a Christmas tree timer.

She has some creative ideas on lighting. This gives me a couple ideas . . . I don't have as much furniture as she had laying around, but I do have a couple resin chairs and table for the front porch, and for the back, a 4 chair/umbrella/table set as well as two other outdoor chairs, footstools and small table. I just need to find a way to make it look so predictable. I can definitely sew up a few cushions . . .

Step Five: Decorate. Pull it all together and here we are…an outdoor space that is happy to be in! I spent about $100 on the whole thing. A suitcase is filled with games, art supplies, a snack and magazines. We have a bucket full of outdoor play essentials.

I had a tub of outdoor things last year, and that was helpful. A bucket might be a bit more attractive, but not great if I left it out in the rain, and I've learned that I generally don't go out and bring them in the garage, etc. when it rains. Maybe some sort of outdoor storage bench??? Plus the bench would have to be on the back patio. Not sure how much I want to spend on storage . . . The suitcase thing could work though for art supplies. I would just bring it in and out. I think I would be willing to do that. Probably.

Well, I'll take pictures of it when I finish. Hopefully before Summer . . .

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