Tuesday, May 29, 2012

A Photo Journal Of My Porch and Deck Projects

If you’ve known me long, you know that when we added the two porches to our sunroom, it was a hurried thing.  After a hail storm damaged our roof, the insurance company agreed to replace it and we had a limited time to get the work done. We had always wanted to add a porch and felt it made sense to go ahead and do it before the roof was replaced.  That way, everything would match.   

It wasn’t an expenditure we had planned on.  It just felt like it was now or never

So we built just what had to be done to get it under roof.  We left many of the finishing details, like wiring, steps, lights, etc. undone.  Which is fine.  We’re still kind of thinking about what we want to do.

That said, we have been doing little things to both maintain our investment, and make it more enjoyable while we think.

Back Deck

deck staining_thumb[1]Last week I finally got around to staining the decks.  I’m not real happy with the color.  But at least the wood is protected.   I can always go darker next time.  From a distance, though, it looks ok.  :)

back deck_thumb[1]

We looked at several options for a deck skirt.  In the end, I went with something unconventional and really pretty inexpensive. 

I bought several screen-replacement rolls from Wal-Mart.  After I unrolled each screen, I cut them in half long-wise.  Then I stapled one side of each strip to the bottom edge of the face boards, and tucked the other side under the mulch.  Does that make sense?

screen deck skirt

I like that it inconspicuously keeps out leaves and critters and takes NO upkeep.

As for steps, we set a few 2x6’s on cinder blocks. messy steps

I know, it’s kind of hokey, and I just noticed they aren’t even level, lol!  But, remember, it’s a temporary fix while we think.

When I stained the deck, I added a light coat to the steps—which helped.  A little.

stain and plantings

A few more hosta plants, too.  :)

As for the very back side of the deck, what a mess!  I wasn’t at all sure what to do with it.  But it felt like we needed some sort of steps on that side, too.  Last year, we used a giant log among other things as a stepping off point.  However, it stuck out too far for me to get between it and a nearby tree with my mower.  needy spaceSo I set out to change it around this spring.

My teenage sons and I moved the giant log to the back of the deck--closer to the house--and added a few more cinderblock steps in a gentle curve. 

 Cheap extra stepsquick tidy steps

Then, in place of that big log we had up front, I arranged a tidy and more compact set of three cinder blocks.  Finally, we added some plantings along the edge of the deck, and I stained everything that showed, lol! 

It will do for now!  I know steps wouldn’t cost that much to build.  It’s just that we aren’t sure yet where we want to put them, yet.  We are hoping that having various places to go up and down will help us decide where we would use steps the most. 

Side Porch

I also stained the side porch, along with the old set of green stairs we are making do with.mismatched steps

I guess it helped to tie things together.  Remember, it’s all just to make it look as nice as we can until we decide how we want to finish things out. :)

side porch stairsI still need to add the screen deck skirt to the bottom of this porch.  Until I do, I’m using the white gate and a couple ratty boards to keep the puppy from dragging everything we own underneath it. 

Ask me how I know she would do that.  (I’ll be getting another roll of screen very soon!)


The last “deck” job I tackled over the last few weeks involved my 17 year old chair cushions.  I hated to pitch them because they are larger, more comfortable and much more durable than the expensive replacements you get these days.  The cushions are covered with a vinyl-like mesh that is easy to rinse clean.  However, the colors just weren’t working for me.chair cushions

So a few cans of spray paint later, my chairs have a whole new look!  I really like how they came out! cushion makeover And something I learned in the process?  The can of paint that costs more but says it will paint twice as much as the cheap-o cans?  

In a scientific experiment my husband would be proud of, I determined that it took two full cheap-o cans to adequately cover one cushion.  While the more expensive can literally covered four cushions beautifully!  From now on, I will be buying the better paint!

Well, that about covers my little deck projects.

Tomorrow, I’ll tell you about a whole ‘nother job that was both sad and gross--all at the same time. 


Mari said...

It looks really nice! And you can never have too many hosta. :)
The cushions look great too!

Penny said...

So what brand of stain did you use, and more importantly, is it flammable? :) I plan on takeing on "project deck" once school is out.

Penny said...

So what brand of stain did you use, and more importantly, is it flammable? :) I plan on takeing on "project deck" once school is out.

in the coop said...

You have been busy! The screen skirt was a great idea, and you can't go wrong with hostas. It all looks quite inviting.

Christina said...

I am always in awe of your garden/yard and home improvement skills!