Great decorations don’t always have to be expensive. Sometimes, you just have to look through your old stuff and make the most of what you have. Think of it as double-purpose cleaning and decorating.
You can always go the shabby-chic route that emphasizes haphazard but fashionable choices that pull together the effortlessness of your taste.
Using cheap material doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll get bad design ideas. You can’t re-decorate your porch or patio in one go, after all, unless you really have the money for a complete makeover. You’ll find more pieces, better fabric or new paint soon enough. The key is to keep your style coherent and your outdoor living spaces looking as effortless as possible.
Here are some great DIY decorating tips for your porch and patio:
1. Paint the ceiling
A little color makeover for your ceiling can do the trick. Just pick a nice and balanced color combination for your porch. Let the ceiling make your porch cooler in the summer and cozy in the winter.
2. Paint the floor
Add some color to your floor. Consider a well-worn color that looks good with scuffs and marks. For some more patio ideas, here is the link.
3. Cover the floor with wood
If you don’t want paint jobs that can fade and chip off then you can cover your floor with finished wood to have a different look.
4. Lay down a rug
A rug will further enhance the concrete floor and will add some color and pattern to your patio design.
5. Overlay a walkway with grass
Buy some artificial green grass and set it in place for a quick pop of color. But if you want to start a garden, you may have to call in a contractor or a consultant.
6. Enhance your walkway
You can place some large stepping stones and create a charming walkway after you’ve laid out your grass.
7. Put some cute, self-made stones
If you want to turn your stepping-stones into something extraordinary, here is one creative way to do it. Adding glassy pebbles to the stones may be just the thing to create a unique vibe.
8. Cover a walkway with bricks
Bricks make a perfect walkway or flooring option. You can make your own patterns using aged bricks or brand new blocks.
9. Light up the walkway
This is a unique approach to developing front porch ideas--including lights. Set up a lighted rope of winking bulbs around the walkway to separate your walkway from your garden or lawn during the evenings.
10. Rearrange the furniture
This is a basic thing to do when you want to reinvent your porch. Here is a video on how to do that.
11. Refresh your furniture
If you don’t want to rearrange your furniture, you can just buy some paint and give your furniture a new look. You can also reupholster them to match your new paint.
12. Break out the pillows
Old and unused pillows inside the house will give more beauty and comfort to the furniture outside. Even if the pillows are quite lumpy, they can just be accents to the actual pillows you use to entertain.
13. Create an improvised pillow
Sew two placemats together then add soft filling material inside then you have yourself a pillow.
14. Add some seat cushions
To add more comfort to your furniture, add a seat cushion that perfectly complements the pillows. Learn to use pattern and color wisely.
15. Add a footstool or ottoman
For some additional comfort and relaxation, you can make your own footrest with a simple stool and pillow. Or you can get an actual ottoman that can double as a child’s chair.
16. Decorate with plants
Potted plants give a very relaxing atmosphere and are not unusual for your run-of-the-mill porch ideas. Just make sure they get enough water and sun.
17. Hang the plants
If you want to do more with your front porch designs, here’s how you can do that. Hanging plants along a pergola or steady beam on your porch may be enough to spruce up your space.
18. Build a cinder block planter
If you don’t want to hang the plants, this will do the trick. That looks very quaint and easy to make.
19. Make the plants stand
If you don’t want to hang your plants and still want to design them, place them on stands to create space. Take note that this is a rustic approach and can look messy with the wrong plants and lack of maintenance.
20. Make alternative rocks
If you’re not a plant person, you can just paint stones and put it in a pot and they can look like cacti or succulent plants.
21. Make the plants glow
You can also paint the planters, pots or other surfaces of your porch with glow-in-the-dark paint for a different effect in the evening.
22. Put in window boxes
To add color and beauty to your window, you can install a window box below and put some plants and flowers that spill over in a haphazard bid for beauty.
23. Flowers will also do the trick
Buy some flowers, put them in a vase and place them on a porch table to add some color to your porch decorations.
24. Put flowers on fences
Flower vines that grow through your fence are great ways to say that your home is one with nature.
25. Create a garden filled with butterflies
Buy some nectar-rich flowering plants so that butterflies will come to the garden your porch overlooks.
26. Reduce the amount of stinging insects
Using a big plastic bottle, put some sugar water or apple juice in it. This can trap and keep stinging insects inside. Add some coloring and glitter to the water so it looks like it’s a part of the design.
27. Get some twigs
Paint the twigs with different colors and put them in a tall bucket. Use this to create a rustic, New Age feel to your porch or patio. Great for people who love fantasy fiction. Here’s an example.
28. Do more decors with lattice panels
Build or install lattice panels and decorate them with grapevine and flowers.
29. Decorate your patio with all-around grapevine
For some more backyard patio ideas, adding some greenery to your ceiling. You can have it done or start it yourself!
30. Add Christmas lights
Go for steady, soft, warm LED lights to save on your light bill. This can create a dreamy atmosphere that has nothing to do with Christmas.
31. Or you can do globe lights
Together with the Christmas lights, you can do globe lights and wrap them around wood beams or ceiling.
32. Light up with a lamp
Old lamps can be used outside as small backyard ideas. You can use them when you want to chill out at night and read a book. The rustic and used look can be very authentic. Remember to douse the lamps when you’re done!
33. Use jars that glow
Try adding these amazing glow-in-the-dark jars to your porch or patio.
34. Buy some candles
If you’re into light and décor, use candles and put them in a small jar and light it up whenever you need some light.
35. Have some long lasting candles
If you don’t want your candles to melt and you want them just simply as part of the overall aesthetic of your patio, here is a remote controlled candle that provides light and color.
36. Make the candles float
These are perfect to create a combination of water and fire. Place floating candles in clear vases with water for that dreamy feel.
37. Make a wreath
Not just for Christmas! Use a grapevine to make your own wreath and add some flowers for more color.
38. Use grapevine spheres
The grapevines can also be used to form a sphere that will also serve as a chandelier. Tutorial here.
39. Suspend a chandelier
A porch can be further enhanced with light provisions. You can also use old chandeliers as part of your back porch ideas. Make sure that your ceiling can handle the load!
40. Hang lamps to add beauty
Instead of a chandelier, a hanging lamp would give a more rustic ambiance to your porch. Put new candles on an old chandelier and it will look like new.
41. Provide light with mason jar lanterns
You can also make mason jar lanterns for a more DIY vibe that you can regale your guests with. Here’s how.
42. Say goodbye to mosquitos with mason jar tiki torches
There’s a lot you can do with mason jars. If you want mosquitoes to go away at night, make your own tiki torches.
43. Add more style with wine bottle citronella candles
If you don’t have a mason jar, you can also do it with wine bottles.
44. Make it traditional with lemongrass plants
For banishing insects the natural way, plant some lemongrass to keep those mosquitos away.
45. Make a fire pit
If you want heat especially during cold nights, making a fire pit can heat up your porch game. Great for sorority and fraternity houses!
46. Or you can build a fireplace
For some really good outdoor patio ideas, just build a fireplace if you want a big amount of heat for cold nights.
47. Pebble and shell dish
Change up a plain and old table to a new and good-looking, well-decorated setting with shells or other materials. Place a dish in the middle of the table then load it with small shells and pebbles.
48. Or decorate with a tablecloth
A really good tablecloth can enhance your porch. You can sew or crochet one and add a pane of glass on top to keep it in place and always clean.
49. Experiment with a treasure chest table
Buy a cheap chest and make it a table. It serves as a table and storage for magazines and kids’ outdoor toys.
50. Have more playtime with a gameboard table
If you’re into board games, this will really help. Your guests will love playing games out on your porch during cool nights.. This is how you do it.
51. Be innovative. Use a tree stump
If you have a tree stump in your backyard, you can just lay down a thick slab of finished wood to make it a table.
52. Make your own placemats and coasters
You can crochet these items if you know how. You can also repurpose old fabric into outdoor place settings for a vintage feel.
53. Decorate with large urns
Buy some cheap and old urns and place it beside your furniture. You can add plants in there or can design the urns depending on your choice of decoration.
54. Make paper cranes for hope
Hang beautiful handmade paper cranes. It adds a different touch to your patio plus you can make as many as you can. Don’t forget to make your wish!
55. Cover a space with an outdoor freestanding umbrella
For some covered patio ideas, this is advisable if you don’t have any roof for your porch or you need more space to entertain people.
56. Or you can also have a canopy
If you have an old blanket, you can use it as roofing material to block the sunlight on your porch.
57. Do more with baskets
Take your old basket and use it as storage for your magazines and decoration outside. Fill them with cards, games or beautiful rocks.
58. Use birdhouses as decorations
Make a bird house and display it on your porch to add life to your porch.
59. Hang a birdhouse
If you don’t want the birdhouse to be fixed in place, you can just hang it and wait for the birds to hang out with you.
60. Make a bird nest
You can just build a bird nest if you don’t like birdhouses. Here’s an example.
61. Set up a ceiling fan
Install a ceiling fan. It gives beauty to your patio decor. Choose one that is sturdy and can handle outdoor weather.
62. Put up a curtain
Instead of throwing away old curtains, use them as cover to block the sun and give an indoor element some outside use.
63. Create a wall mural
Design your wall with paint or decorating materials to have a more entertaining porch. If you have an artistic kid, tell them a part of your porch could be a weekend project!
64. Put in some running water
You can find small fountains (that you can just plug into an outlet) and place them beside your door or the table to have some flow of water in your patio.
65. Do more with waterfalls
Or you can build a pond-less waterfall for some more extensive design to your porch.
66. Add a small sound
On your door or next to your door, put a hanging bell to give a sound every time the wind blows or someone comes in.
67. Make some more sound with wind chimes
If you are a fan of sound-making materials, make a wind chime from yarns and old keys.
68. Hang some picture frames with paper cut-outs
Papercutting and handcrafts are emerging and mainstay skills now. Attend a class or have some made to add a shabby chic feel to your patio.
69. Do some hand-painted signs
Try a class on lettering and calligraphy then install a chalkboard on your porch. Send a great message to the neighborhood everyday!
70. Create original watercolors
If you prefer botanical watercolor or lettering, don’t be afraid to take a class and show the pieces on your porch.
71. Build a deck on the second floor of your house
For small patio ideas, build a deck to have a special place or room outside. This can make your patio look bigger. Extend the second floor to include the deck.
72. Create a distinct place
A balcony is a great mini space on your porch to have a separation from other areas outside your house.
73. Make well-designed borders
Or together with the deck, build an all-around border to create a space from the walkway from your deck.
74. Create some privacy
Create a shutter divider so that the porch will be divided into sections. In each division you can put a different aesthetic to help encourage small groups to talk during parties.
75. Fill your backyard with some inside stuff
Make a mailbox next to your door to still have a home vibe outside.
76. Make a pinwheel
Pinwheels are great decorations to hang from your porch or patio. Here's how you can do it.
77. Put a rocking chair
You can put a rocking chair on your porch for that old world feel. You’re never too young to relax on the porch.
78. Put a porch swing
If you want a more playground-like and relaxing vibe in your porch, a swing is a perfect solution for that.
If you're REALLY in the market for a beautiful porch swing, please check out our article on some of the finest porch swings available for sale online today.
79. Put in a hammock
This is like an ordinary hammock with a twist. You can also go with the usual design
80. Make the most out of folding chairs
If you want to save space and have a chair as well, a better way to do that is to have a folding chair. You can also paint the chairs with different colors.
81. Build a gate
Gates can protect you and still be beautiful. Decorate your gate depending on your porch and what flowers you have on your front yard.
82. Treat yourself like royalty
Building an arch will make you feel like you’ll be having a grand entrance every time you enter your porch.
83. Screen your porch
For screened in porch ideas you can get an ultra old-world feel with traditional designs. You can create designs on your porch railing so it doesn’t look dull. Add wrought iron vines or curlicues.
84. Use a mirror
You can hang up a mirror on your wall to reflect light and create an illusion of a window.
85. Green fences
Fences that mimic the color of your backyard or garden can extend the look of your porch and create a bigger space.
86. Create an interesting fence
To further enhance your fence, drill some holes on it and put marbles for color and design.
87. Repaint your porch sets
Are your veranda and porch sets looking rusty? Give them a fresh coat of paint; you get a makeover for a cheap price.
Now that you have ideas of the patio designs that can have instant effect on your porch, these can be easily made especially if you’re on a tight budget. You should know that beautification of a place requires no great amount of money but just being unique and creative. Use these great tips and have fun with your porch or patio!