Did you know we have a sun porch?
No? I can’t imagine why I never mentioned it.
Really, really forgetful of me.
You may think to yourself, “when a person only has only 930 square feet, how does said person neglect to mention bonus footage??”
Because when that bonus footage is not connected to the house by heating, it is easy for that footage to become a junk room. Please tell me I am not the only one??
Anyway, I felt super bad that the screened porch became a junk room for our project remnants because it is also home to Peter’s bar. He was a bartender for a couple of summers in college, so for his birthday one year I (and some very, very kind friends) hauled a bar home for him that I found on Craigslist. It now lives on our sun porch. Somewhere. I think.
The bar didn’t travel 900 miles with us from Ohio to Massachusetts because we are particularly big drinkers, but more because Peter has an obsession with two things: hospitality, and mixing colorful liquids. Part Southerner, part mad scientist. So I decided that it was finally time to clean out the porch so he could actually entertain friends out there.
Walls: Completely composed of windows and crappy plywood
Floor: Sub-floor only
Lighting: One overhead porch light
Electrical: None. Actually, that’s not true. There are some scary wires in a box on the wall.
Unpacked Boxes: Four
Spiders: One Trillion
Budget: None. Not as in “unlimited,” but as in, “should not spend anything, especially on a three-season (ish) room).
Alright. Challenge accepted. This turned out to be a four-day project. On Day 1 I primed the wood paneling with some leftover primer. It took two coats, and the wood still stained through. Day 2 I painted two coats of white paint that I had leftover from god-knows-what.
Day 3 I painted the ceiling blue in order to highlight the only architectural feature that the room had- two strips of molding on the ceiling. The blue paint was leftover from our bathroom.
This is also the only day I went over my budget of “you don’t have a budget.” I was going to put an indoor/outdoor carpet down to cover the sub-floor, but after looking around I couldn’t find anything in my budget. I was also hesitant to put any sort of fabric in a non-sealed, slightly damp room. I decided on vinyl peel-and-stick tiles from Home Depot. I tried to take a picture of them for you, but it came out blurry. They look AMAZING. You cannot even tell that they are square tiles unless you look closely, and they are textured so well that they look like real wood.
Day 4 I moved everything back into place, and bought some accessories using gift cards. The lantern was a clearance find at T.J Maxx because it was missing a pane of glass. It has an electric candle, so no worries about fire (or the missing pane), or not having an outlet in the room for plugging in the lighting. The tablecloth was $7 at Homegoods.
Flowers and lemonade were just worked into the shopping budget at Trader Joe’s.
I already owned the pillows (I guess we like blue?)
The sign was a gift from Peter’s Dad, and the buoy was a find of ours from Sagamore Beach, on the Cape.
The bar also cleaned up nicely. I spray painted the legs of the bar stools (free from a going-out-of-business sale in NH) to break up the wood. Seat cushions from a Pier 1 gift card.
See, there’s that scary wire box I was talking about… Below it is some shelving that used to be on the Tiny Desk in the family room, but had been moved to the garage after the kitchen renovation. The counter top was from Peter’s Uncle Bob- he helped us get the original kitchen in working shape!
Not a bad view!
The chair was a roadside find (Hobo Martha Stewart FTW), and it was a multicolored monstrosity when we picked it up. I spray painted it glossy black so it would look more like a traditional New England Windsor chair. Actually, I had bought that paint for our lamppost, and just now remembered. Haha, whoops. I was wondering why I had all that black spray paint sitting around…
The wall basket from a trip to Amish Country in Ohio. The flowers are from our yard.
Our grass is not really that color. I swear.
Check out the floor!
Oh, and I hung the lantern using a plant arm from Home Depot.
Best of all, I no longer have to use the Roman “Shame Shade” to hide the porch. We never, ever kept the shade up because it was a) embarrassing b) stressful c) gross.
It turned out to be well worth the four coats of paint- and I hate having to paint more than once. I’m still iffy on how the bar stools turned out, so I’ll have to think about those. Otherwise, very pleased!