Your front porch is what new visitors or passersby base their first impressions on.
So a unique front porch design is on the higher end of our list of musts for your home.
Whether you prefer large porches that provide ample entertainment space, or cozy front porches, there are multiple ways to make your outdoor areas unique.
10 Front Porch Ideas We Love
From the overall shape of the porch to the accents that make people look twice, a unique front porch design creates a lasting first impression.
Here are ten unique front porch design ideas to help you take your front porch to the next level.
1. Porch Swings
A brightly colored or dark-stained wooden swing on a neutral-colored porch can make a big statement.
It shows the occupants are creative and embracing a tradition that isn’t seen on as many porches today as they were years ago.
The lack of porch swings is interesting because it’s a fun spot for sweethearts to look at the stars together or parents to read a story with their kids on a cool summer night.
Just make sure to have your porch structure checked by a professional to ensure it can support the weight of a swing plus the weight of its occupants. If it can’t, porch swings can be purchased that support themselves on an attached frame.
2. Wrap Around Porch
Why stop at just the front porch?
There’s no law that says a front porch must only be in the front.
Wrap-around porches are a great option to extend the outdoor living space to the whole area around your home, giving children more room to play and more area to decorate for the holidays.
Choose one color scheme for the whole wrap-around porch or section the areas into complementary patterns to break it up.
Potted plants and decorative vases can be an inexpensive way to fill the larger spaces. This design will take more space, materials and cost more, but it can be a good substitute for a full deck.
3. No Railing
Opting out of choosing a railing may seem a bit unorthodox, but it can work in the right situation. This option works exceptionally well with wrap-around and L-shaped porches.
It gives the illusion of an even bigger space as, without a railing, there’s no formal stopping point. The eye extends the visual and working area even further from just the porch to include the surrounding lawn.
Of course, there is safety and security to be considered. Install railings where the ground doesn’t rise to meet the porch to avoid tumbles or where people are present that may be unsteady on their feet.
4. Country-Style Flooring
Reclaimed wood from barns and older homes or distressed and darkly stained planks have made great flooring options in the home, and they can also make a great flooring option for front porches.
Staining distressed wood is a fun way to recycle wood, and with a suitable color scheme, it can be a bold and attractive option that is just as durable as new wood.
For maximum effect, pair the darker flooring with a brightly colored door and light neutral colors for the walls and railing of the home. A more subtle effect can be had with a lighter stain on the wood while still giving a country feel.
5. Accent with Fabrics
If you live in a rental home or are happy with the color scheme on your front porch, you may feel limited by what you can do to improve the look.
However, as long as it’s covered or can be covered when not in use, you can further your front porch design by adding fabric to it rather than paint or installing new flooring.
The two main options that shouldn’t break your budget are area rugs instead of new flooring and pillows and throws for pops of color and comfort. Area rugs in fun designs and bright colors are available online and in many furniture stores.
They can provide comfort on the feet when placed under tables and help to prevent dents and scuffs to the flooring.
Match or contrast the rug and existing color scheme with lots of pillows for seating and even more comfort. Drape soft throws for later use on the backs of chairs for when the weather turns chilly.
6. Glass Railing
More homes are embracing attractive railing options outside of the typical spindle design, and glass railings are definitely eye-catching.
They offer an alternative to no barrier at all for elevated porches without obstructing the sight-line of those sitting on the porch.
However, glass porches can be pricey because of the materials used and will require additional upkeep to keep them clean and free from scratches. Homes with children might find little hands naturally gravitate to the panels and leave little fingerprints.
Lots of plants and fabrics can give a porch a cozy bohemian vibe, but the design doesn’t have to be cluttered if that’s not your style.
With the right amount of minimalism on a front porch, you can inspire a clean and welcoming space that will extend right into the home once the front door opens.
To achieve this, paint the walls a solid color and install a lighter-colored flooring that draws the eye up to the front porch. A light stain will also help emphasize what is there and may even make the porch look bigger.
Minimalism doesn’t mean no furniture at all. It just means picking a few higher-end or very meaningful items like designer seating, handcrafted table, or an heirloom rocking chair.
Any of these items can say more than a complete patio set. The key to this design is to choose items that speak to your style that you and your guests will appreciate and remember that less is more.
8. Paved Front Porch
Not every home has a formal built-up front porch, but that doesn’t mean the area outside the front door can’t be enjoyed and even used for small-scale entertaining.
Paving stones can replace traditional flooring; they just may need sweeping occasionally.
Instead of railings, you can plant large privacy bushes around the property to break up the space. Add flowers with a pleasant perfume or even herbs for cooking to add more ambiance.
Whether it’s a small area only big enough for a bench to sit and enjoy a morning coffee or a larger space that can house a table and chairs set, draw on nature for a color palette and stick to materials that you can easily clean. If rain or sun will be an issue, add a small awning or patio umbrella.
9. Bright Front Door
With the rise of the subdivision and large gated communities, a brightly colored front door on an otherwise cookie-cutter house can not only get your attention, but it can also give your guests an indication that they’re at the right place.
Brightly colored front doors may also be a good compromise if your homeowners’ association has front porch design regulations that prevent you from changing the design.
Front doors are available in many different materials with traditional knobs, hinges, and locks to further accent the bright color.
Maybe you don’t want to go as bright as this lime green door, but pink, orange, pastel, and even black are quickly becoming popular front door colors instead of the traditional steel or wooden door painted white.
10. Compliment Your House
A great front porch shouldn’t just draw your attention to its design; it should also complement the design of the house.
If the home has large windows or an exciting feature, the front door should emphasize it and not detract from the details.
Offset prominent features by adding smaller unassuming pieces like wicker furniture, crates, and special pillows and fabric accents. You can also place plants along naturally occurring lines to draw the eye in—just avoid brightly colored flowers.
Things to Consider
Designing a new porch or vamping up your existing space are great ways to give your home a unique curb appeal. Before moving forward with this process, there are many aspects to consider and even some things you want to avoid.
- Available Space. The space available to build your front porch or revamp your porch is an essential consideration. Ensure you have the square footage needed to make the necessary upgrades.
- Location. The location of your home is an indicator of the overall design you may be trying to accomplish. For instance, if you live in town, you may want to focus on colorful accents or bright flooring to make you stand out from other homes in the neighborhood. On the other side, if you live out in the woods, you may not be concerned with the overall draw to your porch but rather the use of glass railings, so you have a clearer view of the natural beauty around you.
- Budget. Budget is a vital piece of the puzzle when it comes to your front porch design. Ensure your desired porch design fits within your budget before deciding to move forward.
- Purpose of the Porch. Is your porch a hotspot for entertaining large groups or lounging around with the family? Understanding the function of your outdoor area will better equip you to make the right decision on the final design and layout.
- Time of Year the Porch Is Used. If you only use your porch in the summer months, you probably don’t want an outdoor fire pit. However, a screen may be an attractive feature to keep the summer bugs out. Similarly, if you use your front porch year-round, a firepit and a retractable bug net are necessary features.
What’s Your Favorite Front Porch Design?
Having a front porch design that fits your specific entertainment needs is essential to determining what unique features and designs to include in your front porch renovation.
Before making a final decision on your front porch design, consider the overall purpose of your porch and what features and designs will best fill those needs.