RenovationsScreened Porch Exterior Details June 22, 2016 When inspiration first struck for this project, we had a barn-style exterior in mind. Our initial plan was to paint the exterior wood siding to match our dark green house and do white trim. As that got closer and closer, I started to get really sad about losing the weathered finish. While I love some modern, I’m a sucker for anything weathered or chippy. I guess growing up in the country will do that to a girl. I’ve tried and failed to get this finish on so many pieces of furniture that the idea of painting it to look shiny and new just made me sad. Chris and I both love old, weathered barns. You just know there’s a story there. So the idea of leaving this wood chippy and rustic as a nod to them pleased us both. While we really decided this because it’s the look we wanted, it didn’t hurt that was a lot easier to accomplish! Scraping all of this old paint enough to prime and re-paint it wouldn’t have been a pleasant task. Plus, if I’m ever considering leaving something natural, I say live with that awhile. You can always paint later, but once you paint, there’s no going back to this finish. Now that she’s all done, I couldn’t be happier with our choice! A lot of you have asked about how we did the screens and y’all, it was so easy. We started by cutting all of our desired windows and framing them out with headers and wood supports. You can read all of the details about that part of the project here. Once we had the windows cut and framed, it was time to add our much-awaited screens. This would really be a cool project to just leave it open air, but I swear, our yard has the worst case of mosquitoes in all of South Carolina. I know that’s exaggerating, but they are so bad. I can’t set foot outside during the summer months without getting eaten alive! In our last house, we finished this awesome outdoor patio space and hardly used it from May to October because the mosquitoes were unbearable. So screens were a necessity if we wanted to really enjoy this spot. We researched several ways to install the screens and ended up going with the easiest and most reasonable option. We started with a roll of this New York Wire 72-in x 25-ft. Charcoal Fiberglass Wire. It took us two rolls to screen in all of the windows and the entry. The key here is having several sets of hands. We stretched the wire over the window openings. I held the upper left corner and first, we maneuvered the wire to make sure it covered the top and bottom well. Once we had it in place, Chris then smoothed and attached the screen with a staple gun. He worked out from the corner where I was making sure to stretch it tight and keep it straight. Once the entire screen is attached, cut the screen from the roll. We wanted the windows to really feel like the whole height of the wall, so we did openings as large as they could be and this roll of screen still work to cover it. You’ll see that the top and bottom is pretty close, but the sides have excess. I would really suggest taking your time and going slow on this so that you get the screen pulled tight and straight. It’s really easy for it to slip. Once the screen was attached, we trimmed out simple boxes around each window. We really wanted to match the chippy finish and not use new wood to trim it out. You may remember that the “befores” of this place showed an old planked barn door. My ever-resourceful husband had the idea to take these doors apart and use the thinner, chippy boards for exterior trim. He attached the boards with finish nailer. Once they were in place, we trimmed any screen that stuck out past the trim using a razor knife. These boards are stable, but would be really easy to pop off and re-attach if a screen ever needs to be replaced. The entry took the most re-work. Remember, we started with those two huge barn doors. Then when they were removed, we went to just an open, wide hole. The brick foundation stopped where those side walls are, so the first thing that had to happen was to extend that frame in the door. We found this Screen Tight Creekside Natural Wood Hinged Screen Door at Lowe’s. It was the exact look we’d pictured here and we loved the $35 price tag. It was 36″ wide, so we used those dimensions to make our plans here. We decided to insert the door in the center and then do two long screened “windows” on either side to keep this area really open. We had a mason extend the brick foundation up to where the screen door would be inserted and underneath the door opening as you can see above. We framed out the door frame and window frames and headers using pressure treated 2 x 4’s. For more information on how we framed out the windows, check out that progress post here. We used the existing wood boards from the door to frame out this section just as we did the windows. We wired in this Galvanized Barn Light from Lowe’s over the entry door. We painted the screen door a gray/blue to match our existing doors in the house: Fresh Idea by HGTV for Sherwin Williams (at Lowe’s). We had to take off the screen to paint the door, but it wasn’t hard to re-attach. We used a screen spline tool to re-attach it after the paint dried. The stepping stones on this side also came from Lowe’s. We already had those pots and pink hydrangeas from our Better Homes and Gardens shoot last year. They both came from a local nursery. One of my favorite parts of this side bed is the huge fig tree that’s on the corner of this shed. It was here when we bought the house. To fill in this bed, we used a row of Hostas in the front. When we’re doing beds like this, we like putting some of the plants in pots because they give it some extra height and dimension. The two galvanized buckets I got at a yard sale and we planted a Nanho Purple Butterly Bush in each. I loved the spindly arms and the pop of purple. The potted flowering tree in the center is a Red Hibiscus Tree. The purple/pink leafy plants on either side of it are Hawaiian Ti’s. On the right, we did a Pink Hibiscus and an Arboricola on the corner. I love the leaves on that plant! All plants were purchased at Lowe’s. There you have it, friends! If I missed any exterior details that you have a question about, please ask in comments! For more information about this project, make sure you visit the related posts below: Shed Project Introduction Screened Porch Progress – Windows Screened Porch Progress – Paint Shed Turned Screened Porch Reveal Screened Porch Interior Details The final post in this little screened porch series will be the Budget Breakdown, coming tomorrow!