Illustrious: glorious, brilliant, remarkable, bright. We’ve always had something of a love affair with words. We’re attracted to them, and easily distracted by them. The same can be said for porches. Expansive, welcoming porches have been on our must-have list forever, and now that wish has come true.
A neglected porch is a little sad. It’s hard to enjoy a porch when you’re so busy thinking about everything it lacks. We tend to think of a neglected porch the way we think of a Charlie Brown Christmas tree: it could be really sweet with a little TLC. A well-decorated porch, on the other hand, is more than just eye candy. It pulls you in and offers the comfort and respite we all need in these harried, unpredictable times. A front porch need not be fancy or expensive. It simply needs to welcome you home.
Yes, porches keep the rain off your head, but in addition to practicality, they offer endless possibilities to improve your mood by creating atmosphere. You can decorate a porch for different seasons and different holidays. Think of your porch as an extension of your home and decorate it as you would decorate a room…more on this later.
HOW TO CREATE AN ILLUSTRIOUS CHRISTMAS PORCH
Step 1: Consider your style and establish your color scheme.
Do you like warm neutrals? Earthy taupes? Fresh greens? Cool blues?
Christmas colors don’t have to be just red and green! Again, treat your porch as an extension of your home, and consider taking your color cues from your interior. This will ensure a lovely transition from indoor to outdoor. Popular color combinations include: blue and white, creams and taupes with lots of natural and wood accents, pink and white, silver and white, silver and gold, and even jewel tones, to name a few.
This year we decided on soft pink and white with hits of silver and ice blue. More on that below. Other gorgeous color combinations to consider are deep purples with lavender and silver, black and gold with dark green, Tiffany Blue with silver or gold, rose gold with burgundy, and even hot pink and lime green!
Step 2: Decide on an area of focus
This could be the door, swing, steps, chair, etc. Once you determine that, make it your starting point. Don’t forget the details! Little details make all the difference.
Step 3: Gather all of your decor
Step 4: Craft any necessary items
If you can’t find it or can’t afford it, make it yourself! We purchased all of our front porch items from Michaels and made our own arrangements using tins, faux Christmas flowers, greenery, and artificial snow.
Step 5: Assemble and decorate
We spent an entire afternoon crafting, assembling the trees, and styling the porch together. Don’t forget to take photos so you can recreate your Christmas porch next year.
Step 6: Don’t forget the lights!
Adding soft white or colored Christmas lights is the perfect way to glow. Nothing says cozy like a softly lit porch on a cold winter’s night.
Be Consistent With Your Light Color
About those lights…be consistent. If you’re going white, go ALL white. If you’re doing colored lights, repeat. Yes, you can certainly mix other colors with white lights, but you should do it in a way that makes sense. For example, red and white repeated. Blue and white repeated. Green and white repeated. We do not recommend mixing multi-colored strands with white lights. It looks disconnected and off. The same holds true for warm and cool white lights. Do one or the other but not both. LED lights have come a long way. They are now available in warm white and not just the super cool blue-white lights that almost look periwinkle.
Step 7: Relax and Enjoy
Make yourself a nice cup of hot chocolate topped with whipped cream or marshmallows. We love 4 tablespoons of Nestle Nesquik with 8-10 oz. of steamed milk.
HOW DID WE CREATE OUR CHRISTMAS PORCH in 2020?
We’re glad you asked! It all started with our blue front door. Practicing what we preach, we chose our door because it reflects the tone of our interior colors. Since our farmhouse has a blue and white color palette with a silver galvanized roof and galvanized exterior light fixtures, an illustrious blue and white Christmas porch with touches of silver made perfect sense.
At Michaels, our flocked trees were our very first purchase. Back in the summer, we painted our flower boxes the same blue as our door (it’s important to repeat colors and elements to tie them together), and we knew that a pair of small flocked trees would look perfect (be careful to protect from rain and wind. We covered ours with a tarp when we had a storm.). We selected a tall thin tree to fill the corner by the porch swing. We then added a variety of miniature trees and a profusion of glitter-bombed white flowers in galvanized tins to tie into the roof and light fixtures. For symmetry, we placed pairs of matching arrangements on each step. Boo-boo alert: one mistake we made was forgetting to add weight to the containers. We learned that the hard way when we had to collect our arrangements and reassemble the next day. The wind knocked them right over. A few handfuls of gravel under the floral foam did the trick.
We already had coordinating blue pillows on our porch swing, rockers, and loveseat, so we simply added white Christmas pillows from Michaels. Finishing touches (remember, it’s all about the details) included: a tin “H” to top our tree, a white dove on a pedestal, faux snow in all flower boxes and tins, a galvanized tree collar for our fluffy tree, a furry white tree skirt for our skinny tree, and beautiful white wreaths, which we sprayed with white glitter for the double front doors.
Update: Our Christmas Porch 2021…Everything is Coming Up Roses!
While we kept some of last year’s porch decor, we changed it up quite a bit this year. What did we do? Why, we added some pink of course! This year’s inspiration started again with our beautiful Yarmouth Blue front door
Soft pink and white look dreamy with this shade of blue, so we went all-out with a magical door garland that we made ourselves. Brittany, Cheyenne, and I spent the afternoon emptying Hobby Lobby’s well-stocked shelves. First we purchased three flocked 6-ft garlands; these garlands were already heavily frosted–just perfect. Although flocking does make a mess, it is definitely worth it. “Snow”-covered greens are softer and more realistic looking than plain artificial greens. Perusing the florals, I suddenly had visions of pink frosted roses dancing in my head. My eyes, how they twinkled, my dimples, how merry! My cheeks were those roses, and Brittany’s nose was the cherry. Cheyenne’s droll little mouth was turned up like a bow, and thank goodness the hair on my head is NOT white like the snow! No beard either – whew, but I digress.
What to Add to Christmas Garland
Brittany found the most beautiful large silver butterflies that easily clipped onto the garland. Pink roses and butterflies sound like spring, but you be the judge. Paired with sparkling white poinsettias and the glistening silver stars that Cheyenne found, this garland is stunning! White spray snow added the perfect frosty touch to the pink roses.
I assembled the garland by hooking it end to end and securing with floral wire. I placed all of the flowers and other ornaments on the garland to make sure everything was evenly spaced and looked good before hot gluing it all in place. Some 3-M hooks on the door frame, and voila! Our garland was assembled and hung in no time.
Taking my cue from the garland, I then crafted two matching pre-lit wreaths for the front doors, adding some icy blue and clear iridescent Christmas balls to coordinate with the Yarmouth Blue paint. Since repetition is the key to pulling everything together, I repeated the whites in my planters by the front door and reused my white poinsettia arrangements from last year, along with my flocked Christmas trees for the porch and Christmas pillows for the swing and rockers. As much as I loved last year’s Christmas porch, I have to admit that I love this one more. The frosted pink roses look so pretty on the garland and wreaths that I also used them indoors on the garland around the mantle…and frosted lavender roses on the tree!
We said it last year and we’ll say it again this year: a home without glitter is like a cupcake without frosting.