If you're not already thinking of your back porch as another room of your home, you're seriously missing out. That often-looked-over space is an extra area to entertain dinner parties, enjoy family nights, and catch up on some rest, not to mention soak up some vitamin D while you're at it. But we get it; taking on an outdoor overhaul can be daunting.
While some back-porch projects may opt for excavations, renovations, and fabrications, there are plenty of easy-breezy updates you can execute on your day off. Ahead are 20 ways to breathe new life into your back porch area without having to hire an expert.
Bring the Indoors Outdoors
Since you're ready to treat the back porch as an extension of your home, why not make it feel like a second living room? Make it look stylish, but most importantly, feel comfortable with textiles, like pillows, cushions, and a rug.
An added coffee table, books, and games will make it so you never want to go inside.
Make It Dinner-Party Friendly
If hosting is your thing, add a large table and plenty of seating to your back porch for dinner parties, brunch soirees, and weekend drinks. If hosting isn't your thing (yet), a grown-up picnic table, like this one, will make you the hostess with the mostest in no time.
Be Strategic With Seating
A simple furniture rearranging may be all that's in order for a little backyard cohesion. Placing single chairs in a formation that faces one another encourages conversation and is sure to be the setting for many a late-night talk.
Burn, Baby, Burn
If you love a backyard bonfire as much as we do, chances are you have plenty of firewood on hand. Rather than cluttering your back porch, install a railing solution to organize all that wood and double as a woodsy aesthetic.
If every time you step out onto your porch, you feel plagued by ugly floors, it's time to take some paint and a stencil to them. The transformation will be dramatic and the price tag won't be. We love this graphic black and white pattern in this minimal space.
Add Finishing Touches
Now that you've made the necessary steps to make your back porch feel more functional, some finishing décor touches will take your design to the next level. This space utilizes a starburst mirror and a tassel garland to draw your eye to the luxe outdoor fireplace, but the additions of pillows, lanterns, side tables, and potted plants make this entire porch feel truly special.
Hang Up a Hammock
Watch as a single piece completely transform your back porch into a relaxing oasis. The simple addition of a hammock will make even the smallest space your favorite place to nap, enjoy a book, or sip on a glass of wine after work. All it takes is installing a couple of anchor points to swing this porch upgrade.
Make It Viewing-Party Ready
Whether you need new scenery for football Sunday or a place to host summer movie nights, your back porch is just the place. Bring a TV outdoors (just be sure to place it in an electronic-safe area) and you'll see how much more fun it is to binge-watch from your backyard.
Try Your Hand at Building a Pergola
A day off and some time to run to the hardware store can result in a pergola, also known as an overhead structure with lattice panels. A design like this provides just the right amount of shade, without looking heavy or blocking out natural light.
It also has a way of making your existing décor look more expensive.
Pick a Pendant Lamp
Pendant lamps are most often used indoors, but bringing one outside will elevate the look of your space in a snap. Hang it from an overhead structure or even a tree to add some light and tons of texture to your porch.
Set the Table
If you're arranging a brunch or dinner party in your backyard, paper plates aren't exactly the picture of 'hostess with the mostest.' Swap your disposable dishes with an outdoor set of tableware, silverware, and glasses. And if you're feeling fancy, fresh centerpieces really help set the tone.
Take a Seat
Sometimes, all it takes is a couple of chairs and a table to set your morning coffee down to make your back porch feel complete. This setup is just what we need for slow Saturday sunsets and lazy Sunday sunrises.
Bring tn the Sand
Installing grass (real or faux) can be painstaking and expensive. Cover up unsightly floors or unsightly landscapes with sand for an affordable flooring alternative.
Reclaim Your Privacy
Retainer walls work wonders at separating your space from your neighbor's, but they're not always high enough to provide the privacy you want. If your existing wall is too short, add a few wooden slats to make your wall higher and up your privacy.
Cram in Some Color
If your back porch is missing a certain something, break our some bold pops of color via outdoor paint. This fairly neutral backyard area made good use of some colorful paint shades and added geometric shapes to make the deck decor pop.
Light It Up
Every outdoor space and back porch should have string lights twirling overhead. They're the go-to lighting option for most dwellers because it complements most design styles, it's easy to install, and is suitable for owners and renters alike.
Set Up a Fire Pit
Take it back to basics with a rustic (and affordable) setup like this backyard retreat. Set up some seating made of tree stumps—just like our ancestors did it—around a fire pit and keep plenty of cozy blankets on hand for evening hangs. And don't forget everything you need to cook the perfect s'more.
Stock a Bar Cart
You might have a selection of spirits in your kitchen or dining room, but nothing gets a backyard boogie going quite like a well-stocked bar cart. Some ice, sparkling water, and citrus garnishes will keep your guests hydrated—and it looks cute to boot.
Create a Cabana Feel
A quick installation of some outdoor curtains will give your backyard an upscale cabana feel, plus some added privacy for lounging, reading, or hanging by the pool. And the best part is they provide tons of shade on extra sunny days.
Warm Things Up
An impeccably decorated backyard will inevitably make your home the go-to for outdoor gatherings all season long. Invest in an outdoor heater to ensure you are prepared for chillier nights.