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Front Porch Decorating: the Good, the Bad & the What Were We Thinking?!

We’ve been doing some work around the outside of our house the last few weeks. I think the appearance of the outside of a home really sets a tone for visitors, and I want ours to be warm and pretty and welcoming, but still simple and uncluttered. We have this great front porch area that we weren’t using at all, and I loved the idea of putting rocking chairs out there. I didn’t have a huge budget for this project, though, and rocking chairs can be expensive. I searched Pinterest for ideas and ran across several photos of front porches adorned with mismatched rocking chairs that were painted to match. I LOVED the look! With that idea in mind, I set out on a hunt at our local thrift shops and on Craigslist for well-priced wood rocking chairs that I could paint to match.Rocking chair #1 is a Craigslist find. It was listed at $25, but I only had two $20 bills and the owner had no change, so it went home with me for $20! Score! I found rocking chair #2 in one of my favorite thrift shops, but it was priced at $75 . . . definitely more than I was willing to spend. As I was walking out of the store, though, I noticed that the day’s sales included a 50% discount on all furniture making this chair only $37.50. Woo-hoo!Both chairs had a similar wood stain, but I thought it looked dated, and since they’ll be outside, they needed some protection from the elements. This Rust-Oleum enamel spray paint looked like a good choice since it’s designed for use on wood or metal and for indoor or outdoor use. It was a bit windy the day that I set aside to do this project, so we pulled the van out of the garage, and my husband set up a tarp for me just inside. Things seemed to be going well until I realized that the bottoms of my bare feet were starting to stick to the tarp. Then I stepped off of the tarp and left a lovely black footprint on the garage floor! Eeek! I called for help and someone brought me an old pair of socks so that I could walk through the house to the kitchen sink. When none of my attempts to wash off the paint worked, my wonderful husband Googled a solution for me, but not until after he grabbed my phone and snapped a few pictures of me sitting on the kitchen counter with my black feet in the sink.Sweet, huh? In case you’re wondering, olive oil is what did the trick. Even better than my temporarily painted feet, though, is my permanently painted garage floor. This definitely falls in the “What were we thinking?!” category. The over-spray from the spray paint coupled with the breeze coming in through the garage door sent a fine mist of paint through the entire garage. The only space that isn’t slightly gray now is the area where I had the tarp. Feel free to learn from my mistakes.I did eventually end up with two beautifully updated black rocking chairs for my front porch! (I’m thinking, though, that my plan to add a few more may not ever happen!)We added a few potted plants for a nice finishing touch, and our simply decorated porch is ready to welcome all of our guests. What do you think? Are you working on any outdoor projects this summer?

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5 Responses to Front Porch Decorating: the Good, the Bad & the What Were We Thinking?!

  • Tammy says:

    Beautiful chairs, Beautiful porch. Lovely black feet….lol….Been their done that. But my concrete was blue vs black….Afterwards I sprayed in the middle fo the back yard on cardboard. And wore cheap cheap flip flops to toss afterwards. Although I did have to redo my toe polish and scrubs the tops of my feet really really good. WD 40 spray in the can helped me…

  • what was your spray paint solution? When I thank-you-lovely-wind-burst-for-that spray painted my calves and flip flops (over my brand spanking new Shellac PEDICURE to the tune of $45 thank-you-very-much) we found that wd-40 applied and then rubbed in good with a wet soapy washcloth got the paint off of me and my pedicure if not my rubber flops…

    Oh well. The lanterns look amazing which was my goal anyway…

    your porch looks great. we’ve been doing similar type things… prettying up and cleaning up. we’ve got an 1890s old rambly farmhouse with a cement porch and front steps. I’d LOVE LOVE LOVE to paint the cement something not cement colored… should probably start working on hubbs for that THIS summer so that by next summer he’s caved… hehe

    I have white wooden adirondacks that i’m still planning to paint black. :)

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