8 Popular Front Porch Decorating Ideas


Front porch decorating ideas abound, but before you dive in, you need to consider the following: What is your front porch saying about you? If you’re like a lot of people, it’s probably not saying a whole lot. All too many homeowners slap down a welcome mat and call it a day, neglecting to give the front porch the design consideration given to the rest of their home.

But here’s the deal: Your front porch is one of the key elements that contribute to the curb appeal of your home and give people a first impression, whether they’re driving by or walking up to ring your bell. Plus, when the weather is just right, it can be a great place to hang. So why not pep it up a bit?

Front porch decorating ideas

“The closer people come to your home, the more they should get a sense of your taste and lifestyle,” says Donna Garlough, style director for Wayfair and Joss & Main. “A great porch will set the tone for what guests will encounter when they get inside—playful or formal, grand or family-friendly.”

Here are some smart ideas to help you maximize this outdoor space and enhance your curb appeal.

1. Pile on the plants

“Every porch needs greenery,” says Lisa Melone Cloughen of Melone Cloughen Interiors, in Morristown, NJ. She suggests mixing a variety of urns, planters, and containers planted with different colors, textures, and dimensions. And if your patio is nearby, continue the same theme with planters and flowerpots there as well.

“Consider mixing taller plants with ivy and moss spilling over the sides,” she says. “Bold color combinations such as orange and purple look really great, too. Perch a mix of succulents in planters or baskets on a table or chair to add to the visual interest of the space.”
Photo by Glenna Partridge Garden Design – Plants placed at different heights will add dimension to your porch.

2. Shut the front door

Love color, but don’t want to go crazy on the interior? Your front door is a great place for some paint ideas.

Christopher Grubbpresident of Arch Interiors, in Beverly Hills, CA, says while black and red are always good go-to hues, other unexpected colors are more than acceptable.

“Why not express yourself with a navy, deep burgundy, or a bold green? It immediately makes a statement,” Grubb adds.

Leigh Meadows-McAlpina designer with Dwelling Interiors and Design, in Charleston, SC, says that beyond color, you should also make sure the front door style is consistent with the architectural style of your home, and in good condition.

“Make certain that the paint or finish is not peeling or chipping. Check the hardware (knobs, knocker, mail slot, hinges) to see that it all coordinates and is properly polished,” she says. “Great door hardware can really make a grand statement, for not a lot of money.”


Photo by Moderna Homes, Inc. – Fancy the idea of ​​a bold color in your house but don’t have the guts to paint an entire wall? Try it on your front door!

3. Rugs, rugs, and more rugs

Many of the designers we spoke to suggested rugs as a way to brighten up a front porch.

“We can’t overemphasize how much of a difference a rug can make on a porch,” says Deborah Holt of Sunnyland Patio Furniture in Dallas. “It complements patio furniture, it feels great on bare feet, [it] lets your guests know you’ve got it more than pulled together, and it’s a great way to hide any scuffs or scratches your porch might have.”


Photo by Bountiful – Be sure you purchase an outdoor rug made of materials that can stand up to the elements.

Don’t forget that welcome mat, either.

“A clean, well-kept mat makes the porch feel like part of the residence rather than the outdoors,” Garlough says. “I like a classic, monogrammed mat made of coir (coconut fiber). Not only does it look crisp, it helps to brush dirt from your shoes as you step into the house.”

4. Light it up

Beyond its utility, lighting ideas for your front porch are also a design element that’ll show off your home’s aesthetic.

“Options include gas lanterns flanking your front door, copper pendant lights hanging from the porch ceiling, or architectural stair lighting,” Meadows-McAlpin says. “These all add a warm, welcoming glow to your front porch façade.”


Photo by Atlantic Archives, Inc. – While we can guarantee the appeal of porch lights, we can’t say they’ll make finding your keys in your bag easier.

5. Take a seat

Make the front porch a place to linger by adding a comfortable place to sit and enjoy the conversation. Depending on how much room you have, porch ideas may include a small bench or two, rocking chairs, or a porch swing.

“Be sure to add a couple of side tables or garden stools for a place to put your favorite book or a glass of lemonade,” Meadows-McAlpin says.


Photo by Historical Concepts – Weatherproof pillows will make your swing comfortable enough to lie in all day.

6. By the numbers

When it comes to porch ideas, the thing people seldom think about changing are the actual numbers on their house—most still display the original ones the builder installed! But new numbers can contribute a lot of personality to your front porch with minimal effort.

“I like to pick styles that reflect the age and style of the home, such as crisp sans-serif numerals on a midcentury house, or a traditional post-mounted mailbox in front of a Colonial home,” Garlough says. “I live in an 1860s Victorian row house, so we went with gold house numbers on the windows and an ornate iron mailbox that gives the front stoop a very vintage feel.”


Photo by Tongue & Groove – Don’t underestimate the power of bold house numbers.

7. Wreaths aren’t just for Christmas

Wreaths with mixed foliage—from faux boxwood and magnolia to twigs and cotton bolls—can be kept on your door year-round.

“Of course, it’s nice to change your wreath out once or twice a year for variety, or you can just add a few seasonal garnishes like faux flowers in the spring or shiny ball ornaments come winter,” Garlough says. Other cool ideas for this outdoor space include a spray of dried flowers or faux flowers in a basket.


Photo by Jeffrey Dungan Architects – A rustic wreath—sans holly—is an ideal year-round adornment for your front door.

8. Keep the front porch neat

Once you decorate your porch, make sure you don’t forget about it, and regularly clean the furniture and items that are left out to endure rain, wind, and other rough weather.

Christina Kretschmer of K+V Homestacking puts it simply: “Dirty furniture is not inviting.”

And as with most things in life, moderation is key.

“Keep the focus on the entry, and avoid overwhelming your porch with too many miscellaneous accessories,” says Meadows-McAlpin.

Your long-neglected porch might just become one of your new favorite spaces.

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