They say home is where the heart is, so what does that make the front porch? While you ponder that, we encourage you to get inspired and make your porch or back patio your new favorite living space. Check out these outdoor decorating ideas that epitomize the perfect functional exterior escape, especially in the warmer months. Plus, get our favorite ways to decorate your backyard on the cheap and fresh ideas for landscaping your yard.
Ikaroo regular Nancy Fishelson, pictured here, has a longstanding affinity for whites and neutrals. But, to offset her upstate New York front porch, the renovation extraordinaire gives guests a warm welcome with vibrant hydrangeas and matching topiaries.
There's no rule against showing off your favorite antique pieces from the safety of the porch rather than inside the house—they are the first things guests will see, after all. Make a worn table your new outdoor serving station.
It doesn't get much cozier than this Colorado farmhouse, where lanterns, plenty of seating, symmetrical plants, and seasonal wreaths all contribute to an overall homey vibe.
One dinner-party-obsessed California couple translated their love of entertaining onto their vineyard retreat's patio. A long dining table and string-light-adorned pergola make this the ultimate hosting hotspot.
This homeowner and mother of three wanted to call it quits on city life, and thus moved to the English countryside. With a patio this exquisite—decked out in a rose arch, box balls, and benches—the pastoral shift makes perfect sense.
An old-meets-new Idaho farmhouse boasts one particularly classic design—awnings. Porch covers popped up in the 1800s to give farmers a shady spot to unwind.
Who said anything about porches being confined to the ground level? If you're constructing your own from scratch, consider the setup of this incredible garage-turned-weekend-home, which boasts a wraparound porch atop two sets of breezy swing doors.
The best way to subtly contrast a white palette? Grey and black undertones, which this Orchard Park, New York patio implemented through seating and stone tiling.
Mossy window and door frames, along with an assortment of florals, give this cozy Washington cabin extra curb appeal in the porch department.
If your patio backs up to your potting shed (or she shed!), complement the outdoor nook with an assortment of galvanized pots and old French beach chairs. This California-based family also laid Calstone pavers to match the plant storage and amp up the style.
Take a page from Diane Keaton's book—the star's Pinterest-worthy residence is an exposed brick-lover's dream come true. While the outdoor area is rooted in rustic allure, black French shower doors (even on the fire pit, mind you) give this space a refreshingly contemporary nod.
This Texas facade, created by two antique dealers, is about as rustic as it gets. The homeowners pulled repurposed materials, like the metal sliding and iron trim, from barn roofs and a Victorian-era farmhouse in Iowa.
City slickers, know that you can still seamlessly meld cozy and metropolitan, no matter how cramped your outdoor space is. These New Yorkers used climbing greenery, terra cotta pots, and matching rockers to turn their terrace into the ultimate cozy outdoor oasis.
The sky's the limit when it comes to porch seating, as evidenced by this church pew installation. We're also loving how the statement piece ties into this monochromatic scheme.
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For longer porches, designate one corner as a spacious seating area. Cool-colored chairs and decor will make the section feel inviting year-round.
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Get your porch ready for summer parties, last-minute get-togethers, or casual hangouts with , ample storage, and a long table to display food and small bites. Then, set the scene by adding and comfy . Be sure to have a cooler ready to go (a wheel barrow also works!) and your favorite sangria recipe on hand.
A metal porch glider, a pair of retro chairs, and a table that doubles as a two-seater bench easily accommodate a half-dozen guests on the porch of this backyard cottage.
Round zinc baskets from are lined with sheet moss, then filled with soil and dried angel vine, which, like a flower frog, helps hold things in place. From there, anything goes on this Connecticut home's porch.
In the far corner of this porch, battered windows portion off a seating area and provide respite from the lakeside wind.
With ceiling fans, rocking chairs, symmetrical planters, and a loyal dog, this Texas home's porch couldn't be prettier.
This Tennessee home's porch draws you in the moment you drive up.
Add some punch to your porch by painting the exterior and ceiling contrasting colors and adding a bold striped rug.
Hinged together, salvaged French doors add decorative oomph to the outdoor seating area outside this gorgeous garden house.
All this renovated New York home's expansive porch needed to take it from scary to airy was new flooring and a fresh coat of paint. Inspired by a superstition that a light blue ceiling would repel bees, the owner painted it a soft blue-green shade.
The screened-porch at this Alabama home embodies modern country charm with its practical galvanized roof, concrete floors, and cinderblock fireplace covered in a sand wash. Huge concrete boxes let the owners store firewood year-round, and cushioned wicker chairs make this room even more cozy.
An antique porch swing turns this front porch into a cozy outdoor sitting room.
In the Gullah culture of South Carolina, a watery-green shade of paint was said to keep evil spirits, known as haints, from invading the home. These days, "haint blue" ceilings can be found in and beyond the Lowcountry, but you can try your luck with smaller doses of the shade. Here, the ceiling is painted Yarmouth Blue by Benjamin Moore.
Meet the hardest working porch in Georgia: It's a sitting room, a mudroom, a potting station, and a breakfast nook rolled into one—the perfect way to take advantage of a yearly average temperature of 62 degrees.
A vine-wrapped pergola and boxy gray wicker seating offers contrasting shape, color, and texture in this backyard of this California bungalow. Glazed pots filled with low-maintenance succulents create a layered look that mimics the home's interior.