• Default design philosophy

Category Design Principles

Core Designing Principles

This project was definitely an inspiration for me to start recording all of our home renovation projects. I’m a little late in posting this (been too busy with other projects – stay tuned), but I am really excited to share.

With our last few moves, there have been certain “must have” features that we have looked for in the home:  Features like a wood burning fireplace, two car garage, and mature trees.  With this last move, we added a screened in porch to our wish list (be on the look out for starving mosquitoes).


We were lucky enough to find a home with everything we were looking for, except the screened in porch – Nothing a little construction couldn’t fix.  99% of the time I am totally a “I can do that myself” kind of girl, but this required a bit more brawn.  So, after the laborious process of obtaining five different estimates, we finally had a signed contract – Woo hoo!  Not so fast…the start date got pushed back several times, and what I thought was going to be a Memorial Day unveiling didn’t happen.

This several week delay had me in a funk (not the smell…the state of mind).  What I needed was some motivation to keep me excited.   My first purchase – Pillows!

I found these at Homegoods.  Fell in love with them as soon as I saw them…the perfect shade of yellow.  They make me very happy.

But let’s see where we started.  Can you say Ugggly! 

Finally – groundbreaking day – very exciting.  This is Lou and his concrete crew.  He had the brawn and the equipment needed to get this project started.  Hey Lou, strike a pose for the crowd. Then only you can find basic design principles.

Eeeek!…no turning back now.
The demolition process took a few days, and of course we had pouring rain immediately after the huge hole was dug.  I know it doesn’t look like much, but it was very exciting to finally see a shape emerge.

We thought we were finally on a roll, but unfortunately we failed the first inspection – the footers needed to be adjusted – more digging.  This again set us back several more days. In an effort to feel like we were making some progress, Shawn and I rented a uhaul and made rounds to pick up all the goodies that were going to go on the porch.  At this point, I had the garage filled with furniture and other item.…

Basic design philosophy


With the foundation finally complete, the framing took almost no time at all to go up.  Other than one of the framers falling through the garage ceiling (What?!), that pretty much went off without a hitch.

After several more inspections, we were finally down to only needing siding, roofing, and screens – oh my.  Check out that stamped concrete.  Lou did a fantastic job (www.cipollonibrothers.com).  The pattern is Ashler Slate.  The base color (desert tan) is embedded into the concrete and then a darker color (nutmeg) is used for antiquing.


Design Process

Between inspections and other delays (like the wrong shingles being delivered – ugh!), we were now into July.  To say it was a painful process would be an understatement.  We were both anxious for it to be over, to move the furniture into the porch, and to reclaim the garage for the purpose of parking our cars in it.

Finally – Move in Day. Yay.  Drum roll please…

We had vinyl bead-board installed on the walls and the ceiling, but decided to keep the brick exposed just because it looked fantastic.  Since the porch is on the Northwest side of the house, the skylights let in some great afternoon light.

And a view from the other side:

I was definitely on a budget, and most of these items I got on sale.
Shopping List:
-Outdoor arm chairs, dining chairs, and bench from Pier 1 Imports
-Hutch, dining table, coffee table (spray painted with ORB), and Hovas sofa from Ikea – A super  comfortable sofa was a must.  This sofa is not an outdoor sofa, but because it is under shelter I thought I would try it.  It has a removable and washable cover that I sprayed with Scotchguard fabric protector, and so far it has worked out great.
-End table from Target (spray painted with ORB and Valspar in Eden)
-Ceiling fan from Lowes
-Other throw pillows from Pottery Barn
-And, of course, my fabulous Homegoods pillows.

The canvas art above the sofa is from my photo collection – visit the Art Store
Some of the oars I have had for years and others came from Pottery Barn Kids.  I painted them to complement all the other bright colors in the room. You can improve your print by mixing some colors.
The fish flags are a tribute to Shawn’s love of fishing.  We hung them on dock rope from a boat cleat.  The colors work nicely with the rest of the room and add a bit of man friendliness.
Why not a bright yellow door?  The yellow  matches my fav pillows perfectly – Valspar in Gold Abundance.

This studio print sums up the attitude of our porch – Monorail Studio

Let’s take another look:

We absolutely Love It!  It has definitely become one of our favorite rooms in the house.  This wasn’t exactly a DIY project, but we definitely had fun with helping in the design process and adding all those special little touches that make it feel like “us.”

Thanks for reading.  I hope you will check back to see all the other great projects we have been working on.…