Porches were once gathering spaces where people kept tabs on the neighborhood. However, sitting out on an open porch can leave you feeling exposed. Indeed, you are exposed — not only to the people passing by but also to the elements.
If you hate feeling this way, then you should consider upgrading your open porch to a screened porch. A screened porch provides extra living space along with the comfort of protection from the weather and prying eyes.
1. Look into Screen Sizes
With a screened porch, you’ll be able to enjoy the outdoors without insects and other nuisances bothering you. Part of this enjoyment comes from your views while on the porch; this one reason you need to consider the size of your screen, after all the size of the frame impacts your view.
Large screen panels provide the most unobstructed views. However, the mesh can sag over time — so you might want to choose a heavier grade of mesh.
Small screen panels may obstruct the views somewhat. However, smaller panels are easier to maintain and repair.
2. Install a Fan
The roof of your porch will protect you from direct sunlight, but it may not be enough to keep you cool on hot days. A ceiling fan is a good addition because it will circulate the air in your porch, keeping it feeling fresh. You can even choose a fan with attached lights. Look for a ceiling fan that complements the style of your porch and house's façade in both material and style.
3. Consider a Unique Flooring Option
As Bob Vila points out, wood is the most common material for a porch. This popularity makes sense. Open porches are usually constructed with wooden floors. Another common material is concrete.
That said, the site also recommends considering ceramic tiles as an alternative flooring option. Besides keeping cool underfoot, ceramic tiles provide a unique and stylish welcome to visitors. You have many design options with tile flooring. Just make sure the tiles you choose match or complement the exterior color of the house for cohesion.
4. Add Trim
Your porch will create the first impression for visitors, and you want it to be a good one. As such, don't leave the walls and frames unadorned. Consider adding trim for visual interest. Use the trim around your entryway and windows for inspiration to draw out to the frames. Likewise, consider adding ceiling trim, such as box beams, to create an attractive interplay of light and shadow.
5. Choose your Screen Door
Naturally, you'll need an entrance to your porch, and that will probably be a screen door. A classic screen door typically features a large top panel with a mesh panel. The lower panels usually feature wooden panes. Of course, if you’d rather have a screen door mad of only mess, that is an option.
In fact, you can customize your screen door. You can choose creative varieties with decorative trim, more woodwork, or carved panels. Look at the shapes in the façade of your house to drive your choice for any trim shapes in your screen door.
6. Promote a Porch Style
Similar to most home upgrades, the style of your house will dictate the style of your porch. However, you have some leeway in your design. For example, a porch with a traditional, cottage, or even rustic design style can complement a Victorian house. Use whichever design style you choose to drive your choices in materials, hardware, and fixtures.
Transform the front of your house into a personal getaway by either screening in an existing porch or having one built as an addition. Our expert team at The Screen Shop Inc can help you with all your porch needs and even designing your screen door.