Rocking chairs and blooming hydrangeas and icy blue shutters and roman columns and reclaimed pavers and cottage lanterns and terra-cotta topiaries. All happy, beautiful things! These are our porch dreams and pictured above is one of our inspiration boards for this upcoming season’s renovation project. Creating board has gotten me so excited for the spring equinox which thankfully, is right around the corner.
Upon moving into this home we immediately took to our open and airy screened in porch off the side of the house. It serves as a natural extension of our living room with two sets of doors off the main room, opening things up to nature’s breezy beauty in an effortless way. It’s a place we spend a lot of time in from spring throughout autumn, and is a cozy part of our home that we all tend to gravitate towards when the weather is nice. The kids love playing out there and we have fun hosting dinner parties out there with sparkly stung lights overhead in late summer and the sun has gone down.
When talking about redoing all the landscaping out front of our home this year, like pulling all the overgrown and less than attractive privacy plants, we found ourselves going down the rabbit hole (you know…) of creating a space we would be able to use just as much as our beloved screened in porch. Months of planning and dreaming (and saving, of course) has brought us to this spring where we’ll be able start this exciting project: a wrap around front porch!
Andrew and I been having so much fun pouring over Pinterest late at night after the kids have gone to bed, putting ideas together for this new addition to our home. When we moved into this old 1920’s colonial we immediately fell in love with the hand-crafted charm and southern features sprinkled throughout, but we found ourselves adding other design elements and decor touches that make us happy too. We also adore cottage style design reflective of European country homes we have seen throughout our travels, and are also fond of simple farmhouse design that tie us to the Midwest. I suppose our personal style is a bit of hodgepodge of all things we love, resulting in look all our own of what I can best describe as a combination of the following three. Here are a few ways we plan on incorporating these styles into our new project:
- Simple Classic Colonial – round roman columns + detailed railing + big pops of white + open air concept
- Charming European Cottage – lantern light fixtures + reclaimed brick pavers blue shutters + front door + topiary decor
- Cozy Southern Farmhouse – rocking chairs + hydrangeas + flower boxes
When creating the inspiration boards for the contractors it was important for us to capture the overall feel of what we want this space to be for our family. Sure there are specific details we indeed have to cover like any ol’ renovation requires, but seeing the above put together gives us a solid vision for what this porch will serve us five as our family grows and roots here dig deeper. Ultimately, we are wanting a warm and welcoming space as we enter our home, one that invites us to slow down before entering, but also gives us another nature-filled room that connects to our existing porch. We are going to connect old brick pavers to our current screened in porch while keeping part of the front porch open air, as to not take away sunlight from inside our home. That was an important part of designing this project for us given that many front porches make homes darker inside. Andrew and I also love the communal aspect the front porch invites into our lives. Our neighborhood is one where people walk around morning through night with their dogs and babes and sometimes, glasses of wine or cigars, just enjoying their day. Front porch living gives us a connection to community and a first hand window into this friendly Midwest culture.
So here is our first inspiration board and I love it so. I’ll be sharing bits and pieces of this project with you as we move along. Wish us luck, this is our first big reno! You experts out there, what tips or helpful ideas do you have for this novice?
*All images found via Pinterest.
Brandi - Loving the blue accent color. Very European. Brick pavers are beautiful and I love recycling old brick if it’s available. Can’t wait to see what you come up with. I’m sure it’ll be as gorgeous as the rest of your home. Happy Spring!!
Jessica Large - I have always dreamed of living in a home with a big front porch. I will have to live vicariously through you for now. Good luck with everything!
Jasmine Eclipse - I am so in love with old colonial style buildings, especially nestled beneath trees! This is a lovely post, and inspired me so much. Thanks for sharing!
Kizzy - What a lovely project. I’d love to live in a house with a porch, we have a small one on the front which we could utilise but as its not our house, we’re limited as to what we can do. Good luck with your project.
Jessie - So dreamy, mama friend. All of it! I’M getting giddy over here FOR you! 🙂 I cannot wait for those days to come for us…to be in the home we know we’ll be in for a long time and slowly make it more and more our own. Such comfort in that. So inspired by your style and feel like have a similar vision/feel for what “home” is, in many aspects, not only when it comes to style, but in the ways of life and motherhood, etc. Such a joy and a gift to find a kindred spirit like that in the world…even if it’s only on the internets 🙂 We’re still in the “in-between” stages over here, renting a little apartment steps from the beach in my hometown (San Clemente), while we rent OUT our little downtown apartment in Uppsala, Sweden (Fred’s hometown). We’re actually going back this summer to sell it because Sweden has rules about how long you rent out property, though we haven’t yet decided where we’ll put those pennies. We will have been here for 3 years this July and still feel unsure about where to settle. There’s so much we both miss about our life in Sweden and while San Clemente/California is home to me in many ways, most of my family and friends have moved away from here which makes imagining a long-term life here challenging at times…and life in Sweden very appealing to go back to. It was so fun to learn that you were in Kansas City when I started following you on Instagram because that is one place both Fred and I have always chatted about lightly as a place to live. He was an exchange student for a year in high school at Shawnee Mission East and has such fond memories of living in KC, and a good handful of friends still living there. He went on to play basketball for OSU in OK (not somewhere I have any intention of moving to, haha), though the people and neighborhoods of KC are something he always said were so charming 😉 We were there to visit his host family together before we were married and I definitely could see why he missed living there. Those big trees lining the neighborhood streets! And such beautiful homes with such history and character. You don’t get much of that here in California, nor do you get the full 4 seasons, which I miss after experiencing that life in Sweden for almost 7 years. I’m longing to settle down in a home where I know we’ll be for a long while…to plant our roots somewhere. That’s been a dream of mine since I was a little girl…having a home, filling it with babies and love and joy. That’s as good as it gets 🙂 But as with all beautiful things in life, they are worth waiting for. Dating/marrying a professional basketball player and country hopping with him for the first few years of our life together taught me a bit about patience and also the importance of making even those in-between homes HOME to us in small ways. So that is what I will continue to do until we know what step is next 🙂 Watching you a few steps ahead, smack dab in the heart of that phase of life is just SO fun to do and keeps me dreamin’ for those days myself, so keep these updates comin 🙂 There is such beauty in watching dreams unfold, even if they are someone else’s <3 Big hug to you, friend and wishes for a cozy weekend with your people. xx