A Bermudian friend once called his beautiful Bermuda porch a “real rum sipper,” meaning it is so comfortable you want to do nothing more than sit and sip your drink!
If you plan on spending time on your porch this summer, whether entertaining or just cooling out, here are some great ideas from interior designer Nancy DeSouza at Terceira Quarterly to jazz up your porch and take it from blah to beautiful.
The introduction of a curtain or shade on your porch can help filter the daytime sunlight and give you a more comfortable environment when the sun is strongest. Roller shades are available in many different finishes from vinyl to wood, and some manufacturers provide wind cords to keep them from flapping on breezy Bermuda days. A curtain can also create a more romantic environment. Using fabrics for exterior use is essential.
Swing the day away
For relaxing in cool Bermuda breezes, a swing or hammock is an ideal solution. Always make sure the walls, roof or posts on your porch are sturdy enough to handle the weight, and follow the manufacturer’s specific guidelines for installation. Hammocks or swings with their own stands are an alternative when your porch is not structurally sound enough to take the extra weight.
Plants help create walls to offer privacy and intimacy. Flowers add pops of colour that bring more interest to your porch; pick a colour palette that works with your house, and mix plants and flowers with different characteristics. The right containers are essential in any design. Talk to your garden centre for tips on what plants would work best; knowing your flowers’ and plants’ growth habits is essential for maintenance.
Set the mood
Create a mood for your porch-based activity whether it is reading, dining, playing a board game or just relaxing. Romantic outdoor candles that hang from a porch ceiling or spread out over a table can create soft light. Jam jars used as candleholders can create a lovely glow. String lights also introduce soft lighting to a porch area. Using soft lights with your main fixtures can create a different atmosphere for whatever activity you may be enjoying.
Define the space
Make your outdoor porch an extension of your interior living space by adding rugs to the seating area. They will define specific spaces as desired. Water resistant and lightweight, they can take inclement weather conditions and are moved easily when the weather takes a serious turn for the worse. Look for material such as olefin or UV-treated polypropylene, which are both fade- and mold-resistant. Cleaning is simple, as you only need to hose and air dry. If left uncovered, you can expect them to last approximately two seasons, which is why they should be used on a porch where the rug is protected for most of the day.