Transform a plain porch into a party-ready oasis with these easy, colorful decorating ideas.  Paint and a new floor played their part in refreshing this outdoor room. Now see what new furnishings can do.


Exterior of 3 season porch

A screened-in porch is on everyone’s dream list at the height of summer. This one was nicely proportioned, too, at 200 square feet.


Porch makeover before

Inside, though, it left a lot to be desired. Moisture-stained walls and uninspired furniture make an uninviting impression.


Porch color scheme

Need inspiration for a color scheme? Look at things you love. We pulled muted hues from a favorite set of vintage seaside postcards to choose an area rug, and fabrics for furniture and throw pillows for our makeover. First we painted walls in creamy white and installed a new hardwood tile floor that added instant warmth. See how we did it here.


Old porch furniture

Serviceable seating did its job but offered little in the way of comfort or style. The outdoor carpeting captured and held moisture every spring.


Gray patio furniture

Since we planned to infuse the space with color, pattern, and texture, keeping the furniture neutral lets the accessories pop. A comfortable new love seat and chairs invite lingering over sangria and snacks as the sun goes down. The furniture’s gray upholstery welcomes multicolor furnishings, such as the oversize paisley rug that extends the room’s color scheme underfoot. Unite different patterns by making sure they have one or more colors in common. We used both soft green and ocean blue to create continuity.


Porch living room

Now the living room end of the porch is set for socializing with comfortable new patio furniture, a rustic chicken-crate coffee table, and a hooked area rug perfect for cushioning bare feet.


Chicken crate coffee table

We teamed up the metal-framed gray patio furniture with a chicken crate-turned-coffee table to provide an eclectic place to kick back and relax.

It’s easier than you may think to create a repurposed coffee table. Look for a chicken crate on Craigslist, at farm sales, or in junk shops. Clean the crate completely with hot, soapy water and bleach, then rinse and let it dry. Stain if desired, then seal with Thompson’s Water Seal if you plan to leave the coffee table outside. Attach heavy-duty swivel casters with double-lock brakes beneath the corners of the coffee table (pre-drill the holes, making sure you hit solid wood). You may need to add wood between the crate and the casters to raise the coffee table to a comfortable height of 16 to 18 inches. Top with a piece of glass or an acrylic sheet cut to size if you would prefer a smoother surface.


Cozy porch living room

This 40-year-old porch has a new lease on life as both a gathering spot for entertaining and a quiet hideaway for reading or napping. Vibrant floral prints give pillows a perky presence.


Flowers and plants

Bright flowers echo the chosen color palette. Take greenery up high with a vintage egg basket as a fun plant hanger.


Kantha quilts in box

Keep guests warm on chilly evenings by storing throws or blankets within a vintage-look box. These soft Indian Kantha quilt throws add intriguing colors and patterns to the mix.

Wheeled storage boxes easily move where they’re needed.


Boston fern in plant stand

Silhouetted against gray hardboard siding, a graceful Boston fern fills a bare corner of the room. The curvy vintage plant stand beneath it complements the room’s retro vibe.


Painted pallet

Don’t forget to add weather-resistant art to those porch walls. Paint a retro scene on a recycled wood shipping pallet.


Vintage birdhouse

Perched atop an antiqued table with a scalloped apron and turned legs, a weathered birdhouse brings the outdoors in.


Painted sofa table

We found this table at a streetside tag sale. Although it was painted glossy black, there was no hiding it’s beautiful lines. A little elbow grease and a few coats of paint and it’s a knockout. Here’s how we did it.

Gather Your Materials

Use fine-grit sandpaper to sand all surfaces of the table and wipe thoroughly with a tack cloth.

Spray one coat of X-I-M primer on the table. Let dry.

Spray on one or two coats of Ivory Bisque. Let dry.

Use medium-grit sandpaper to sand all areas where distressed look is desired. Wipe thoroughly with the tack cloth.

If desired, antique with Early American gel stain. Let dry.

Spray on one or two coats of finish sealer letting dry between coats.


© Caruth Studio

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