Before air conditioning became popular, screened porches were a fixture of summer life in many homes. The warm temperatures inside the house drove family members to the screened porch for a respite from the heat. The porch was the perfect place for a mid-afternoon nap, visiting with neighbors, or relaxing with a glass of iced tea.
When air conditioning arrived on the scene, many homeowners viewed screened porches as outdated and enclosed them. However, screened porches are making a comeback, as people are longing for a simpler way of life.
Screened porch pros
A screened porch lets you experience the great outdoors while at the same time providing privacy and benefits similar to an indoor room. Simply lock the screen door if you want to nap on the porch while enjoying a summer breeze. Feel like staying in your night clothes all morning? No problem. A screened porch is more private than other outdoor spaces.
When you have a screened porch, rainy days won't keep you stuck inside. What could be more refreshing than listening to the sound of rain while relaxing with a good book or resting in a hammock?
Enjoy bug-free living without worrying about applying insect repellent. A screened porch makes it possible to enjoy sultry summer evenings outdoors without being eaten alive by mosquitoes and other unwanted insects.
Screened porch essentials
Install a ceiling fan or have portable fans available to use on days when the summer wind isn't blowing. Fans allow you to enjoy the fresh air and the smell of the great outdoors on days when mother nature fails to provide a breeze.
No old-fashioned porch would be complete without a porch swing. Don't oil the chain if it squeaks. Squeaky porch swings add nostalgia. The same holds true for the screen door on the porch.
A lounge chair or hammock is essential for relaxing or napping. Don't forget to add a rocking chair or two. Make sure to use indoor/outdoor cushions that will hold up well in moist and humid environments.
A table and chairs makes the screened porch the best place to enjoy any meal of the day outdoors without the need to swish the flies away. It's also a great place to enjoy your morning coffee, work on homework, or put a puzzle together.
Traditional furniture, such as wood, rattan, and wicker is best for your screened porch. No matching needed. Mix colors, textures, and style to achieve an old-time look.
Screened porch accessories
No screened porch is complete without a few plants. A metal plant stand is perfect for keeping plants organized and makes a practical addition to a screened porch. Boston ferns and orchids are good plant choices for screened porches, as they tend to thrive well with indirect lighting.
A metal plant stand is also useful for growing an herb garden if placed in a sunny area of the porch. It can also be used to hold books, magazines, games, or a radio. You may also want to use it for storing eating essentials, such as dinner plates, napkins, and silverware. Place the dinner items in a basket with a lid and the plant stand can be used as a makeshift cupboard.
Install shades if desired to control the sunlight on the porch. A few candle lanterns will provide soothing ambiance on summer evenings.
Creating your own screened porch can take you back to a time when life was less hectic, and summer living happened on the screened porch. A well-designed screened porch is inviting and enticing. You're likely to find it is your new favorite place to pause and rest during a busy and stressful day.