Tag Archives: Porch

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Shelter from the swelter, it all started with a covered entry

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Shelter from the swelter, it all started with a covered entry

• Photograhy by Gillian Jackson

In ancient times, the Greeks adorned entrances to buildings with formal roof structures supported by tall columns. Called a portico, it was seen as a sign of authority and wealth. It also raised the home’s stature and offered much needed shelter from the heat.

This covered porch features a seating area complete with fireplace and television, and an outdoor dining area. Skylights, recessed lighting, and beautiful lighting fixtures complete the look.

Since then, the portico has shed its elitist signifier and has become a staple for homes the world over. A porch, loggia, veranda, or balcony offers us protection from the elements but more than that, it’s a place to catch a breeze and chill out.

Who can resist the charm of a wraparound porch?

We still romanticize the wraparound porch where you might find a southern gentleman sipping sweet tea and gossiping with a neighbour. But, with the rise in popularity of outdoor living, we’re seeing more covered structures that offer a variety of open-air options for relaxation and entertainment.

Moving the inside – out

We want our outdoor structures (or rooms), to be multi-functional. Not only are we moving our dining rooms from the inside – out, we’re also setting up living rooms, kitchens and bars so we can enjoy as much time outside as possible. By creating these outdoor rooms, we’re not just increasing the function of the home and how we use it, we are doing it in style. Our backyards and porches are an extension of our style from within the home.

A covered cabana is a great refreshment station, change room and servery, all in one. The covered fireplace is a great wood-burning option for cooking pizzas and large barbecues.

Increase your property’s value

But it’s not just an excuse to spend money. These structures also add value, especially as we see property values rise. We want to squeeze the most use out of our property, so permanent structures like cabanas, tiki bars, sheds and pergolas are not only a great way to enjoy the yard, they’re a good investment, too.

Newly built homes are incorporating outdoor seating areas with heaters built into the ceiling for added comfort and warmth.

Hello loggia!

Functional and desirable, the loggia or porch is enjoying a renaissance of sorts. Some newly built homes are featuring covered porches at the back of the home. Many clients are asking for high-quality installations such as built-in heaters radiating down from the ceiling. These three season “rooms” may also feature large stone fireplaces, TVs, wet bars, and dining and lounge areas — multiple uses in one space.

Luckily, the building and manufacturing industries are seeing this surge of interest in outdoor furnishings, accessories, fixtures and technology and are bringing new ideas and styles to the market.

Cope with a cabana

Is it a bar? A change room? Pool storage? It can be all of that and more. You don’t have to have a pool to create a unique, covered space for liquid refreshments. Electricity and plumbing added (safely, by professionals) can make even a tight space a fun, entertaining oasis.

A repurposed garden shed with a garden theme is a perfect summer getaway, right in your own backyard.

Once the sun goes down

Adding a firepit, pizza oven, or outdoor fireplace is a great idea if your municipality allows it. By adding an open-air pergola overhead and some comfy seating, you’ll have a perfect outdoor room to enjoy the evening stars by firelight, or cook that perfect pizza.

Is it a shed or a she-shed?

Wired with electricity for lighting and power, this cosy space is a perfect three-season room.

You almost have to look twice these days to see if a garden shed is being used for garden tools. Today, it’s quite on trend to convert an existing shed into a little garden retreat. In line with the small home movement, clever placement of furniture, storage solutions, and running electricity and water elevate any small space into a fully functional mini-home.

Whether it’s used as a studio, workshop, retreat or just a shed, upgrading an existing structure or building something new from scratch that will keep you outside longer is a good investment, both financially and for your health. So get outside and don’t come in until the street lights come on.

Designer, spokesperson, author and television personality, Jane Lockhart is one of Canada’s best-known experts in the world of design and colour. janelockhart.com

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Front porch makeover

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Front porch makeover

By Jaclyn Harper

Well friends, fall is officially here. Have you started your fall decorating yet? Personally, I think the best way to kick off the season is with an updated front porch or entry. With that said, today I’m giving you five tips to instantly transform your front porch.

Paint
This may seem daunting to a lot of you, but you’d be amazed at how much paint can transform your space. Last year, we painted the brick of our home. The transformation is honestly incredible. Our home went from old and dated to new and modern. Of course, getting your brick stained can be much more expensive than simply painting your front door. In fact, we did paint our front door and our garage, too.

When we purchased our home they were white and they looked dirty. We thought that this coffee brown colour looked amazing against our new grey brick and would hide the dirt as well. So why not give your front door a refresh? It’s simple, it’s inexpensive and it’s fun. Plus, it’s so simple to change the colour if you want to in the future.

If you pop into Lowe’s they have the new HGTV Home By Sherwin Williams line, which makes shopping for your paint colour really easy. I’m thinking I’m going to repaint our door a light blue to give it a burst of colour.

Texture
For fall you definitely want to incorporate different textures on your front porch to bring it to life. I’m talking about corn stalks, hay bales, birch logs, textured pillows and throw blankets. All of these things help to create a cozy and inviting entry to your home. These items are also a great way to play with different heights and will help add some dimension to your space.

Corn stalks can be really dramatic, which I love. Using hay bales to add height can be helpful, too. They make for great fall side tables, stools or pedestals for your fall accessories.

Accessories
Speaking of accessories, you can’t go wrong with pumpkins. But don’t go crazy — when you choose a lot of smaller accessories your space can look very cluttered very quickly. And make sure you’re choosing some larger elements so that people can see your items from the street. Stand on the sidewalk on the opposite side of the street to see how it’s all coming together.

These days a lot of people are actually purchasing their accessories online. So, if you’re shopping online already, go to airmilesshops.ca and get miles at the same time! They’ve added a bunch of new brands like Etsy, Wayfair and Ticketmaster, in addition to the 175 brands they already have. In fact, the pillows, the black lanterns and the magnolia wreath are all ordered from Wayfair. Everything else on my front porch was picked up at Lowe’s. We found a really fun blue and black doormat there this year

Colour
The easiest way to add some colour is with flowers. Mums are great for this time of year, but there really are so many options to choose from. I think it’s important to start by figuring out what your colour palette is going to be. You can look on Pinterest or head to Lowe’s Ideas and Tips section to get inspired. Once you’ve decided on your palette — stick with three colours — then it’s time to pick out your flowers. This year I’ve chosen to use navy, white and green. Of course, you can also add colour in your throw pillows, your throw blankets, your doormat and in your flower pots.

Lighting
It’s really easy to update the look of your home with some new lighting. Whether it’s a wall sconce, ceiling light, solar lighting along the walkway, or just adding some lanterns, it’s easy to update your home. If you look outside and notice that you’ve had the same wall sconce for about five years, it’s probably time for a change.

At Lowe’s there is such a variety of lights to choose from. That’s where we found ours and it was only $22 at the time. Total bargain right?

Well, I really hope you get to try out these tips for yourself. I’d love to share your front porch makeover on my Instagram page and all you have to do is use the hashtag #jhdfrontporch. I can’t wait to see what you guys come up with.

Jaclyn Harper is a TV host, interior stylist and busy mother. http://jaclynharperdesigns.com/

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