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Posted 05/27/2024 in Outdoor Living

10 Front Porch Decorating Ideas For Old Houses

10 Front Porch Decorating Ideas For Old Houses

Your front porch is the heart and soul of your Old House. It is the first part of your house that greets you and your guests on a daily basis, so make sure that it reflects your style and enhances your home's curb appeal. Here are some front porch decorating ideas to help get you started and that will give you an amazing space to unwind in at the end of the day.

Table of Contents

  • Overview - Create an Outdoor Living Room
  • Have a Plan - Don't Work Against Your Home
  • Make Sure to Incorporate Your Taste
  • Try to Avoid Clutter
  • Install a Hanging Porch Swing
  • Add a Colorful Rug
  • Add Cozy Rocking Chairs
  • Add Some String Lighting
  • Hang Outdoor Buniting or Curtains
  • Define Space With Plants in Beautiful Pots and Baskets

01: Overview - Create an Outdoor Living Room

front porch decor ideas outdoor livingFront Porch Decor: Outdoor Living

  • The goal is to extend your living space from inside your house to your porch by adding comfortable outdoor furniture like sofas, rocking chairs, or a nice porch swing.
  • Ground the furniture with a colorful outdoor rug and functional coffee table.
  • Tie it all together by adding décor elements such as accent lighting, throw pillows, and colorful plants to create an inviting outdoor living atmosphere.

02: Have a Plan - Don't Work Against Your Home

front porch decorating idead design elementsPorch Decor: Design Elements

  • Have a plan and work with the elements and space that you have. 
  • Bring back any original architectural elements, trim, etc, to add a historical or timeless look that is true to your house's original design.
  • Create a porch design that complements the existing architecture of your Old House. This will enhance your curb appeal. 
  • Strive for a seamless transition between the house and the porch.
  • Avoid jarring contrasts in style and aesthetics.
  • Make a list of priorities, a final project plan, and a list of materials, decor, furniture, and plants that will transform the space. It's all about the transformation! 
  • NOTE: for an idea of the porch architectural elements that were restored or retained here - door hardware, vintage mailbox, beadboard ceiling, crown moulding, and porch columns. Remember, small details add up to have a BIG impact!

03: Make Sure to Incorporate Your Taste

front porch decorating ideas personal touchPorch Decor: Personal Touch

  • It's your home, so design a space that makes YOU happy! Personalize your porch decor from top to bottom that will reflect your unique style, preferences, and priorities.
  • DOn't feel like you have to "reinvent the wheel"! Maintain the home's primary design while incorporating elements from other styles through minor details like furniture choices or fabric patterns,lighting, and plants. These elements are easily changed as your taste changes over time. 

04: Avoid Clutter

front porch decorating ideas porch clutterPorch Decor: Porch Clutter

  • Keep your porch organized and avoid overcrowding it with too much furniture or decor.
  • Strike a balance between functionality and aesthetics. Look at your proposed list of porch decor items and ask yourself - where will everything go, where will it live, where will I store it. Have a place for everything and everything in its place.  
  • As you make a plan to transform your porch, ensure that you have enough space for movement and relaxation. This is key so it doesnt feel too "cramped". More is not better in this case. 

05: Install a Hanging Porch Swing

wooden front porch swing Porch Decor: Wooden Front Porch Swing

  • A Porch Swing adds a charming and functional seating option to your porch.
  • It can create a cozy and inviting atmosphere, perfect for relaxation.
  • Choose a swing style and size that accomodates the size of your porch and that complements the style of your old house.
  • Add some outdoor throw pillows and cushions for added comfort. 
  • Need help with a new porch swing? Do you know what a porch swing "comfort kit" is? Find out  here - Porch Swing Selection and Installation Tips

06: Add a Colorful Rug

red outdoor porch rugPorch Decor: Outdoor Rug

  • Replace a standard welcome mat with a colorful, patterned Outdoor Rug.
  • A rug will instantly add personality and vibrancy to your front porch.
  • Choose a rug that complements the color scheme of your house and furniture.
  • Make sure that it is easy to clean and is weather resistant for long life. 

07: Add Cozy Rocking Chairs

front porch wood rocking chairPorch Decor: Wood Rocking Chair

  • Rocking Chairs are a classic addition to any porch, especially for older homes.
  • They offer a comfortable and nostalgic seating option. We've all tried them out at Cracker Barrel, am I right! 
  • Whether stained or painted, choose rocking chairs that match the style and color scheme of your porch and decor.
  • Add a matching throw pillow and seat cushion for added comfort.

08: Add Some String Lighting

front porch string lightsPorch Decor: String Lights

  • Outdoor String Lights create a warm and inviting ambiance, perfect for evening gatherings or late nights relaxing on the weekend.
  • They can be easily installed and are relatively inexpensive. See the tips below.
  • Consider using LED lights for energy efficiency.
  • MOUNTING NOTE: The install here uses an interior String Light Suspension Cable Kit to easily hang any decor around the entire porch - lights, hanging baskets, buntings, curtains, flags, etc. 
  • TIP: Larger bulb string lights can be very bright! Not all sets are "dimmable". Dont worry! To set a comfortable brightness level based on your preferrences, consider a "plugin" Dimmer Switch as a "must have" so you don't have to wear sunglasses at night. You'll be glad you did! 
  • DIMMER NOTE: Some LED string lights are nor dimmable and are not compatible with dimmer switches. Make sure your String Lights are - DIMMABLE.    

09: Hang Outdoor Buntings or Curtains

front porch buntings and curtainsPorch Decor: Buntings and Curtains

  • Buntings and curtains add a touch of whimsy and charm to your porch.
  • You can also incorporate flags or banners into your design for a patriotic feel and theme for the seasonal holidays or during football season. Go Blue! Roll Tide
  • They can also provide  a little extra shade and privacy for your front porch.
  • Choose fabrics that are weather-resistant and complement the style of your home without clashing.

10: Define the Space With Plants in Beautiful Pots and Baskets

front porch decor potted plantsPorch Decor: Potted Plants

  • Incorporate greenery into your porch design using a variety of pots and baskets.
  • Choose plants that thrive in your climate and light conditions.
  • Layer tall and short plants, and mix different textures and colors for visual interest.
  • Utilize a mix of outdoor poles for hanging baskets and a trellis for climbing plants, such as climbing roses. 


Revitalizing your Old House's front porch is a rewarding way to enhance its charm and create a welcoming space for both you and your guests. By thoughtfully blending traditional elements with your personal touch, you can design a porch that complements your home's architecture while reflecting your unique style. Remember, it's not just about aesthetics; it's about creating an inviting outdoor haven where you can relax, connect with nature, and enjoy the company of loved ones. So go ahead and experiment with these ideas, and don't be afraid to let your creativity shine through. After all, your porch is an extension of your home, and it should be a place where you love to spend time.


More Porch Decorating Resources

More Outdoor Living ResourcesDoor and Hardware ResourcesMillwork and Crown Moulding ResourcesPorch Swing Selection and Installation TipsRed Outdoor RugStained Rocking ChairOutdoor LED String LightsString Light Suspension Cable KitString Light Dimmer SwitchTea-Stained Vintage American Flag BuntingsTea-Stained Vintage American Flag12 Front Porch Decorating Ideas - Martha Stewart35 Front Porch Decorating Ideas - The SpruceDecorating Mistakes That Make Your Porch Look Unfinished - Southern Living

Best of luck, and keep on Fixing!   

Christopher Hewett My Old House Fix

For more info visit:  www.myoldhousefix.com

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