6 Creative Ways to Freshen Up Your Front Porch (On a Budget!)
Get that dreamy curb appeal without dropping an entire paycheck.
When it comes to transforming any space, the little things can go a long way. It’s no different for your front porch. There are plenty of ways to liven up your home’s exterior without breaking the bank. Here are seven creative ways to jazz up your front porch so when you come home after a long day of work, you’re excited to walk through that front door.
1. Paint the Door
Let's start with the front door: it's typically the first thing the eye is drawn to when looking at a home's front exterior. That's why painting it is an easy and affordable way to instantly add some character. Go for a bold color, or give it a fresh coat of paint. Get tips and tricks on painting a front door here.
Inspired by an antique cabinet she saw, Beyond the Screen Door blogger and designer Sonya Hamilton painted her own front door a brilliant blue-green and applied a glaze to mute the effect. The color is Sherwin-Williams Nifty Turquoise.
Burst of Sunshine
You just can’t sustain a bad mood in the presence of a bright yellow door. This one, which belongs to blogger Erin Loechner, is set off by charcoal-gray shake siding and a decal applied to the glass sidelight that says sweetly, “Hello.”
"The strong ocean blue and bright red shown here hold their own against the color of the exterior stone,” Erika says. This color combo is bold but still classic — it complements the historic feel of this home without imparting an ounce of stuffiness. Image courtesy of Behr Paints
A Victorian home is a license to indulge in brilliant paint and trim choices. "This style of architecture has so much detail that it takes a dark or bold color to draw your attention to the front door as a focal point," says Jackie Jordan, director of color marketing for Sherwin-Williams. This shade, Sherwin-Williams Indigo, harmonizes with the copper trim above and the brass hardware and kick plate below.
A Slice of Lime
It's hard to resist painting a contemporary door an acidic shade, like this delicious Overt Green by Sherwin-Williams. "The simplicity of the door — which isn't interrupted with panels, windows or other details — acts as a great blank canvas to apply bold color," Jackie says.
Powder Blue Meets Stripes
Blogger Ellen Mallernee Barnes (blackandwhiteandlovedallover.com) got so inspired while she was painting her front door blue — that’s Benjamin Moore’s Wythe Blue — that she decided to go all out with porch stripes. Those colors are from Sherwin-Williams: Perfect Greige and Antique Ivory. “It turned out so fun and bright,” Barnes says. “I love pulling into my driveway now.”
The color orange is associated with vibrant energy, according to award-winning designer Lori Dennis, ASID. For that reason, orange can be hard to pull off — but pairing it with a cool gray exterior as Lori did here keeps the mood balanced and bright.
There's just something about a glossy black door — it's elegant, bold and impossible to ignore. But it makes an even bigger statement with the right trim. Here, the black entrance door of this historic home is enhanced with accents of olive green, cream and red. Image courtesy of Behr Paints
This confection of a front door was snapped by DIY blogger Brittany Bailey (prettyhandygirl.com) on a neighborhood stroll. The pale Jordan-almond color is a close match, she suggests, for the Sherwin-Williams shade Aqua Tint.
"Nontraditional colors can trigger an emotional response," Erika says. "This can be used to your advantage in making your home feel more approachable." This purple door adds just enough whimsy to put visitors at ease. Image courtesy of Behr Paints
Got a stodgy brick façade on your hands? An electric blue front door will certainly breathe some life into the picture—and knock your neighbors’ socks off. DIY blogger Brittany Bailey (prettyhandygirl.com) spotted this one on vacation in the United Kingdom.
“M” Is for “Marvelous”
If you’re going to paint your front door, why not go all out? Lifestyle blogger Jill McKee, who dishes on DIY home decor at meandjilly.blogspot.com, gave her door a much-needed makeover with a strip of crown molding and a can of Benjamin Moore paint (color: Iron Mountain). Then she took it up a notch by painting a houndstooth pattern on a papier-mache “M” from a craft store in a lighter shade of gray, distressing it with sandpaper and attaching it to the door to achieve the final look.
Cass, blogger from That Old House, describes the hue of her front door as "summer squash yellow." It's actually Benjamin Moore Imperial Yellow, which pops out like a happy surprise from behind the charcoal-colored screen door frame and trim.
White is a versatile choice for a front door, says Erika Woelfel, director of color for Behr Paints. A bright white can add pop to a blah exterior, while a softer white such as Behr's Cotton Fluff can bring things into balance, as it does for this cottage’s welcoming entrance.
A red front door may seem awfully dramatic when you're looking at paint swatches, but don't fear it. Red is such a popular way to add interest to a neutral exterior that it's now considered a classic choice. This shade, Behr Licorice Stick, is a source of energy and an instant cure for "the taupes."
In the Navy
This deep, rich blue shows off seasonal décor to great advantage (lush spring ferns also look fantastic against it). The door belongs to blogger Ann Drake (onsuttonplace.com), who likes to change up her color and accessories to keep her look fresh. The color shown is Sherwin-Williams Naval Blue.
Everybody knows and loves the classic red front door—but the shade people usually pick is cranberry, which has blue undertones. To turn the temperature up a notch, push your red towards orange instead. As shown here, it makes a totally unexpected but satisfying pairing with weathered brick.
DIY blogger Brittany Bailey (prettyhandygirl.com) knows a thing or two about home improvement, but for this project she didn’t have to lift a finger. She inherited this purple front door from the previous owners of her home and decided to keep it as is. The color, unique to Bailey’s neighborhood, pops against white trim and also picks up the color in the mosaic tile on the brick porch.
One of a Kind
Interior designer Lucy Williams (lucywilliamsinteriordesign.blogspot.com) helped pair one of her clients with a local custom millwork company to create this fabulous wood door. The intense turquoise color makes a strong statement against soft yellow brick, especially flanked by mirror-backed lanterns on either side.
Spicing Things Up
A photo in a magazine inspired crafts and décor blogger Korrie Bastian (redhenhome.blogspot.com) to paint her front door a warm orange. The tasty pumpkin-pie color is Behr’s Maple Leaf.
Put It in Neutral
If your house is a neutral color but you’re squeamish about bright hues — not everyone can handle a candy-apple red or a neon green front door — try a paint color that is also neutral but has the opposite “temperature.” That is, choose a warm door to go with a cool house, or vice versa. Here, taupe siding with warm yellow undertones is nicely complemented by a charcoal gray with a cool bluish vibe.
Look To Fashion
You might think coral pink would be a tough color to pull off, but it looks right at home paired with a pale cream brick. A pinkish-orange is a good companion for any neutral siding color — witness the recent fall fashion trend of salmon paired with olive green. (If it looks good on you, chances are it’ll look good on your house!)
According to Feng Shui principles, you can’t go wrong with green, the color of balance and renewal. Don’t worry that it will blend in with your landscaping—using green can actually draw out the different shades that are found naturally in your yard. The saturated hue shown is Behr’s Precious Emerald.
2. Add Porch Drapes
I love the instant change a set of outdoor curtains can make to a porch. It's a great way to add visual interest and in this case, a lot of color. If your porch allows for a seating area, curtains can offer privacy and shade for the days when you want to curl up with a good book.
Flynnside Out Productions
3. Update Your House Numbers
Here's a cheap, easy and fun way too add a little spunk to your home's front porch. Freshen up the exterior with new house numbers. Explore all the options and pick or mix-and-match a set of exciting numbers. Don't feel confined to placing them on your wall or mailbox! Hang them on a planter box and add plants for a fresh look.
Modern Seattle Courtyard with Metal Planter and Concrete Wall
A metal planter displays the house number just outside this modern courtyard. Drought-resistant plants fill the rustic container, which accents the contemporary concrete wall that separates the patio from the street.
Coreen Schmidt Photography
4. Flourish With Flora
Get creative with your plants and flowers. While the flower pot route is a great one, and I highly recommend adding them around the porch, get creative with your flower containers. Use pitchers, wheelbarrows, old cans and sprinkle them throughout the exterior. It is an easy way to bring life and color to the front of your home. Check out fresh and fun DIY planter ideas here.
Interior designers arrange objects with a range of heights and widths to keep the overall look balanced. To add height to potted evergreens or planted winter floral, try placing vessels on top of vintage stands, chairs or stools.
Flynnside Out Productions
5. Create a Seating Space
If your front porch has the space for one, consider adding a small seating area outside for entertaining. Patio furniture can get a little pricey, but there are some great steals at estate sales that would be perfect DIY projects. Add benches, chairs, tables and an outdoor rug to cozy up the space.
6. Install a Porch Swing
It's the classic front porch element and you should definitely have one if you have the place for it! This is on the higher end of the budget but it can make a big difference with a few pillows and a cushion, so it's worth considering. Learn how to install a porch swing here.
Vibrant Color and Pattern Enliven Classic Porch
Bold patterns and vivid colors bring life and personality to this charming front porch. A white swing is adorned with pillows for ultimate comfort, and yellow ottomans serve multiple functions as foot rests, coffee tables or extra seating.