What is it about the standard white front doors that have become such a sign of boredom to society? Curb appeal brings up such a war of emotions for me but the truth is, I genuinely love a home that looks loved. I appreciate beautiful blooms in flower pots and landscaping that feels thoughtful and useful. I really love getting inspiration from books like this one that I just finished reading! I love driving down streets that have established landscaping and fun details that make each home say “I’m unique!” but I have a big confession folks… I have struggled to find my vision for the front of my home.
When you ask me about what I want in my garden, I know what my dream garden would look like with its’ abundance of honey bees, trellises filled with all manner of plants and rows of beautiful bounty every way you turn. And of course, the way in is a stone lined walk-way and gate! It might look something like this photo – a fence, a path, inviting me to go to the garden. If you asked me about my chicken coop plans or my concept for our greenhouse – I could go on and on in depth about elements of design that I want to see incorporated for function and personal appeal. I adore all things beautiful and purposeful. Either alone isn’t enough for this mama, I need the fanciful flare and the raw utility in my life. So what happens when you ask me what about the front yard? I flounder in my lack of solid vision.
I do know that my home has transformed over the years from our weird rental to our beloved family home – but the front is like a welcome and I just can’t seem to find what I want that welcome to look like! I know what I don’t want it to look like though and I’m starting from there… This month I’ve decided that I want my front to look as inviting as possible – a hard task when it’s in the middle of a long term remodel!
Mother’s Day brought me the beginning of finding my vision for my front invitation to the world. Two years ago, you all might remember the fun ‘mailbox project’. We transformed our mailbox from a small, very very dented and rusted tin can that leaked water onto the mail inside to a statement for our whole house! “We’re the white farm house with the bright yellow mailbox at the road”. It’s impossible to miss it!
Every day since updating our mailbox, I have enjoyed the happy color and thought of how else could my home be more of a treat that greets and less of a maze of curiosity! This year has been the first year my children and I starting some flowers from seed – and I fully intend to plant them outside at the front of my yard. Recently I decided that our front door had to change too. It was unpainted (just factory primed white) with sad, weathered and damaged trim surrounding it.
I started mothers day with my front door looking like this –
The brown trim around the door? It’s sat unpainted for at least the 5 years we’ve called this nest our home. First I thought it was just ugly but I never really paid a lot of attention to it. Last year though Damon blew my mind when he said “it’s unpainted” as we discussed the front porch issues (and subsequently removed the porch as it was damaging the house!)… but I was shocked! Who installs trim outside and leaves it unpainted to be ruined by the elements outside?
Have you been in an old building and wondered what ‘the story’ is behind it? Or an old home and you want to understand who lived there, what was their life like? I am continually curious about my home. As layers of remodeling continues and we find more bits of wall paper or an old mayo jars labeled for .39¢ – but then as it shifted from original owner to the next and to the next, where did it stop being loved and cared for? I just don’t know but I am always curious, especially when it’s a newer door (2005) but only half correct in it’s installation.
This was just another example of how my poor little house had fallen into decades of neglect and I wished to bring it back to a glorious family home that it might have been in the 1940s! What I ended the day with is the happiest transformation ever!
Not only is the door beautiful and the trim repaired, caulked and painted – but I think I have a vision for my greeting to the world and the beginning of hope to create an inviting opening that feels authentic to me. A bit of whimsy, a bit of utility, a whole lot of FUN. But I need your help – Can you share with me elements of a front porch that appeal to you most? Wreaths? Welcome mats? Potted flowers and hilarious little lawn gnomes? A porch swing? Help me out here!
And stay tuned, it’s going to be beautiful folks….