We are slowly making progress on our old farmhouse this year. While it’s not the large renovation we were hoping for we are grateful to be checking things off the list. We had a gentleman do a lot of work around The Found Cottage last year and he’s been helping around our farm with projects that Joe and I need professional help with. He did such a great job on our farmhouse front porch remodel that we are meeting with him this week to discuss the larger renovations for next spring.
Finding a good builder is hard, especially with all of the challenges the world is facing now. We’ve been disappointed with the process and are finally starting to see a glimmer of hope with the house moving forward. It is incredible how good it feels to have not only a project done, but done beautifully. We couldn’t be more thrilled with how this front porch turned out.
Wood Vs. Composite Decking
We really examined our options with replacing the deck with wood vs. composite decking and at the end of the day the composite just did not fall in line with what we wanted for our old house. We really wanted to keep the old house look and the composite decking options just had too wide of planks. When the former owners of the home told us that they last replaced the deck in 1992, we had our answer. If we can use the wood product and have it last another twenty plus years, then that is what we were going to do.
We decided to go with tongue and groove Southern Yellow Pine in a four inch plank. We were lucky because the foundation was still in good shape as was the supports. Rather than replace the railing we were able to fix the rotted pieces and add new supporting trim around the bottom to reinforce the railing.
Our builder also added some white aluminum fascia trim around the outer edge of the deck to help keep the water away from the wood. The way he explained it is typically when decks begin to deteriorate from water damage it starts at the edge and moves quickly into the center of the deck. This will add just another layer of protection to the deck.
Scroll for paint colors.
We have been fortunate enough to travel to some incredibly beautiful places in the United States over the past few years and some of my favorite homes in Alabama, Charleston and New Orleans all had lovely beautiful blue ceilings on their porches.
I did a bit of research as to why they’re painted blue and I found a few different reasons.
The blue ceilings are called haint blue and it’s tied to spirits in and around the home. Some sources I read said that porches, doors and window shutters were painted blue as a means of protection from spirits of the dead or “haints” entering their homes, hence the name haint blue. Other sources said that the ceilings were painted haint blue so that spirits would pass through rather than protect from.
Non spirit reasons include that bugs, spiders and swallows will stay away from building nests and webs in the blue color. Time will tell.
There does not seem to be one specific shade of haint blue there are a bunch of different kinds. My friend Liz suggested Grand Hotel Mackinac Blue by Valspar (color 5007-9A). I really loved that idea because I was pleasantly surprised how much our family enjoyed our time at The Grand Hotel a few years back. The color is a soft blue and in the light of day is the perfect breezy shade for the porch ceiling.
The floor color was a bit tricker. I almost went with a light gray but after walking on the primer a few time and seeing how much dirt showed up I knew we had to go darker.
I went to Repcolite in Jension, Michigan which is now my go to paint stop. The staff there is incredibly helpful and friendly and if you’re not following them on Instagram you need to. They showcase the most stunning Benjamin Moore paint colors and have such great inspiration on their page.
After talking to Mac at the Jenison store I decided we needed to go bold and we needed to go red. Not cherry red, a rusty red like the stain that was previously on the front porch. Benjamin Moore Spanish Red, Color 1301
I took a chip of paint the size of my thumbnail into the store with me to pick up the porch paint to color match the house and railings and Benjamin Moore Cloud White, Color OC-130 was a perfect match. I think we might be painting our doors that color as well.
I was really nervous that the porch was going to look way too patriotic with the red white and blue, but I’m thrilled with the contrasting tones and how nostalgic it feels.
By the time we replaced this deck there were dangerous rotted out holes all over the outer edges. It’s funny having it fixed now we still walk close to the house when using the front. It’s truly the best spot to sit on a hot summer day because the breeze always comes from the west into the house and you can sit and watch the sun sink into the corn fields each night.
I’m going to wait until next year to order porch furniture but I’m thinking just some simple black rocking chairs.
It feels so good to get these projects tackled! Next up is painting the garden shed!