Low Budget Summer Porch Decor

frontporch3A friend of mine just sent me an amazing book by Myquillin Smith, aka TheNester! (Go here to order and get your own copy.) It is called The Nesting Place – It doesn’t have to be perfect to be beautiful! I have been so encouraged and spurred on in my quest to make our home… OUR home sweet home.
I mean, she’s right. It doesn’t have to be perfect to be beautiful! I have thought about this a bunch over the past week as I’ve been spring cleaning and re-decorating outside.


I’m not trying to put out the vibe that I’d rather have my own hand-made pallet furniture on my front porch than a bright new set from West Elm. But, it does make me happy when I can create something useful, pretty and cozy to make our home feel relaxed and inviting for only a few dollars!

– Pallet Benches: I purchased 6 pallets from a tractor supply place for $2 each last spring. After trying out my own design (which was a big fail), I followed this tutorial and made two benches for the corner of our porch.
– Quilted Seating: For the quilted seating I actually cut up an old quilt and sewed together these cases and stuffed them. To make sure the quilt pattern was enough for the project, I used a brown sheet as the underneath side of one and an airplane blanket for the underneath of the other. Luckily, I had enough to make two pillow cases as well!
– Side tables: Recently I moved my poppy red side table from the porch to another part of the house. I am in love with stumps as side tables (which The Nester uses in her book as well). Walking to camp everyday we pass a huge pile of tree stumps. So, I piled some in my truck and gave them a new home!
These sell between $159 and $199 on West Elm’s website, so… score!
– Christmas lights: I tied Christmas lights to the ceiling of our little corner to make it nice to visit once the little’s are in bed. It really is a cozy spot and I only spent about $15 total!
One last little tip I wanted to share had to do with my entry way to our home. Last summer a group came to pressure wash and re-stain our porch. One gal asked if I wanted to keep the 5 gallon buckets they used to do something artsy with them one day. As it turned out, she was brilliant. I chalk painted them white and used them as flower pots for these hostas! Grouped with some fire wood, poppy’s and a hand-made wreath… I’m happy I went with the blue door… maybe I’ll do the backdoor this summer!

There IS beauty in the imperfection. – Myquillin Smith

Myquillin’s perspective and insight on decorating our homes, is refreshing and enjoyable. I’m thankful for this reminder as my family opens our home for guests and visitors over the next 10 weeks.