Fall is the perfect time to refresh your front door decor. Take some time to evaluate what is working for your front door decor and what are some ways you may want to refresh, brighten, or change the entry to your home. By refreshing your front door decor you can instantly make your home look updated, more inviting, and a happier place!
Start with a fresh base! Take time to clean your front door, walkways, and discard any weathered, moldy front door decor from previous seasons. Pressure washing your walkway and brick can offer an instant refresh. This electric power washer is easy to use and packs a lot of punch as far as electric options go. Pick the appropriate tip for the level of dirt/grime; the thinner the spray angle, the more force it exerts on the surface. Be careful not to apply too much pressure to old mortar and any painted surfaces you wish to remain painted. Do a test spot in an area you can not see in case it damages the surface. Also, start close to the home and move farther away so the dirt gets pushed away from your house as you work.
Oftentimes a mixture of liquid dishwashing soap, hot water, and elbow grease is the best way to clean your siding, front door, and railings. For any stubborn stains, Clorox’s Pro-Results Outdoor Bleach is a wonderful solution. Use Windex and a lint-free microfiber cloth to clean glass when the area is not in direct sunlight. Don’t forget to scrub down your mailbox and any lampposts!
When cleaning your light fixtures, it may be best to contact the manufacturer for their cleaning tips for specific products. When contacting the manufacturer’s customer service, Hinkley explained: “This fixture is part of our Bratenahl collection and is made of solid brass under the copper bronze color finish. The darker spots that you see are a natural occurrence with brass. You may be able to make the finish look better by cleaning them thoroughly with a mild dish soap and water and a soft cloth; nothing abrasive as that could damage the finish. When they are clean, an application of a product called Penetrol (available at home stores like Lowes and Home Depot) may help to bring the luster back to the finish. They probably will not look brand new, but it should help! A coat of car wax once or twice a year will also help retard the darkening process.”
If you encounter loose or broken mortar joints during the power washing process, don’t panic the DIY solution is a simple and straightforward process. Begin by removing any loose mortar by hand with the aid of a flat head screwdriver. Once the loose pieces have been removed, clear the joints back six inches from the problem spot to ensure the new mortar will have good material to adhere to using an angle grinder and masonry wheel. Take a piece of the broken mortar to your local home improvement store to find a mortar or grout that closely matches your existing mortar. We found this cement grout very easy to use and it came in a wide spectrum of colors allowing us to closely match the mortars.
Mix the material in small batches and apply to the joints using a grout bag and wet sponge. Return after 30 minutes of curing to clean up any overfill on your stone or brick.
Add Paint and Hardware
Fresh paint color is a fabulous way to refresh your front door decor. Paint gives you a big bang for your buck; fresh paint can completely change the look of your home and boost curb appeal. The front door, sidelights, and shutters are painted Polo Blue by Benjamin Moore a beautiful, classic, navy blue. The classic navy is complimented by updated bright, brass hardware that offers great contrast against the dark paint color. Other paint colors we are digging right now: Farrow & Ball Off Black No. 57, Benjamin Moore Dove Wing OC-18, Benjamin Moore Pacific Ocean Blue 2055-20, Benjamin Moore Gentleman’s Gray 2062-20, Farrow & Ball Parma Gray No. 27
Don’t overlook updating your house numbers, ours were the original ones from the 1980s. Adding a modern script and finish made an instant refresh to our front door decor.
An easy upgrade to consider while updating your entryway is the addition of a smart doorbell. These WIFI enabled devices come in many configurations from wired to wireless, motion-activated to a smart device controlled cameras that will keep records of who approaches your door. Our personal favorite feature with a newborn is the ability to temporarily turn off the chime in the home during naptime. Here’s the unit we ultimately selected for our home.
Read More: 5 Ways to Protect Your Home
Decorate Your Front Door
Now the fun part! Layered doormats are a trend we are seeing everywhere right now and rightfully so, nothing makes your front door decor feel more welcoming, cozy, and warm than layering a doormat over a larger outdoor rug.
To achieve this look: start with the base rug, keep size and material in mind. The standard to aim for is a 3’x5’, if you go much smaller you will limit the amount of rug that shows on each side of the doormat or totally cover it up – not the end goal. Choose a bold pattern on the rug and then use the top doormat to tone down the overall look as you are only seeing a few inches on each side of the actual patterned rug. Make sure your rug is labeled an “outdoor rug” so it will withstand moisture, sun fading, etc.
Add a wreath, front door basket, etc. Wreaths can be expensive! Creating a DIY wreath is easy, more cost efficient and allows you to update it every season! A simple boxwood wreath is achieved by wrapping boxwood (faux or preserved from your garden) around an inexpensive 12-inch wreath frame, securing it in place with floral wire, then adding your favorite bow or a custom wooden name plaque. It looks great to include faux flowers that complement or mirror your pots.
Another door decor option is a wooden or wicker basket wreath. You may then fill this basket with faux flowers or fresh flowers from your garden. This wreath alternative is an easy way to change out the flowers seasonally to match your front door decor.
Add Plants to Your Front Door Decor
Add pots, flowers, and don’t be afraid to use artificial plants to keep your watering to a minimum.
Start with the basics, determine how many and the style of planters you would like as part of your front door decor. When choosing pots there are so many options. Using the same pots in various sizes creates a cohesive look to your front door decor. It can also be fun to use different styles or colors that compliment each other. Pay attention to the material of the pots you select, not just aesthetics! To determine the right material container for your front door decor, know the facts on popular options:
- Ceramic pots are made of clay and then glazed. They are commonly found and come in a variety of sizes and beautiful colors. These are more vulnerable and will need to be brought inside during cold weather to prevent cracking. They are also very heavy to move!
- Terra cotta comes in a variety of sizes and are widely available and affordable, thus making it a popular choice. This material is also fragile, they will need to be brought inside and stored upside down during colder months.
- Fiberglass/resin is a personal favorite since these are lightweight, durable, and do not require any special storage. They may be left outdoors year-round. These look very much like the materials they are meant to imitate.
- Plastic containers are a cheaper solution, they look less realistic and are less durable than fiberglass planters.
- Wood planters are not likely to crack in cold weather and they hold moisture longer for your plants which does make them more susceptible to rot. A plastic liner can resolve this issue.
- Metal and concrete planters also make great planter options but can get heavy and hot. Be sure to place them correctly before filling with your potting soil and plants.
Prepare your pots for plants; drill holes or remove caps on the bottom to allow for excess moisture to escape. Add a layer of loose gravel or rocks to the bottom of your container to allow for ample drainage and will prevent your soil mixture from leaching out the bottom of the pots. Add high-quality potting soil, this is different from gardening soil. Potting soil or potting mix usually does not actually include soil but is made up of peat moss, sand, perlite, and vermiculite. This allows the mix to be sterile, fungus-free, and aerate and drain better than soil. If your pots get a lot of sun and you are not great at remembering to water them, adding polymer crystals that can hold 600x their weight in water can be a beneficial addition. Just be sure to follow the mixing ratio for crystals to soil; once wet, the crystals expand and can cause the soil to bubble up and overflow from your pot if too many crystals are added.
Next, determine the amount of sun your front door gets before you purchase plants. Is your front door full sun? Shaded by your house? Choose your plants accordingly. Thrillers, fillers, and spillers…sound like a horror movie? Each plant plays a role in creating a balanced planter. Be sure to choose plants that have similar sunlight and water requirements when selecting plants for your container design.
Start with your thriller, they are going to be the star of your container. This should be something big, bold and beautiful. These are often taller plants that are placed in the center of the pot. Dracaena or spikes are wonderful examples of a thriller; their spikey upright leaves offer a great contrast and height for bushy, filler plants. Other examples of thrillers are canna lilies, elephant ears, salvia, asters or ornamental grasses.
Fillers are mid-size, mounded or rounded plants that fill the center of your container around the thriller. Some examples are geranium, lantana, coleus, begonia, caladium, and gerbera daisies.
The spillers are trailing plants that tumble over the edge of your container. Trailing vines and spilling flowers are great at softening the edges of your container calibrachoa (million bell petunia) in white are a personal favorite. But other great options are sweet potato vines, ivy, or a vinca vine.
Don’t forget to feed your plants! How often do you eat? While it is unrealistic to feed your plants that often, plants should be fed a hearty diet once a week. Start with organic, water-soluble plant food. With a proper diet your plants will grow larger, produce more flowers, and better fend off pests.
Read More: Create a Vertical Garden
The look of topiaries flanking each side of your entry is an elegant and classic way to refresh your front door decor. Many people are intimidated by the pruning, watering and the high maintenance of topiaries. You can achieve the same look with little upkeep by using one of the many wonderful, faux topiaries or trees. These options provide year round color and life to your front door decor. Here are some great faux topiaries that do not look overly plastic or shiny:
Kick back, relax, and enjoy the fruits of your labor with your refreshed front door decor perfect for welcoming guest during the upcoming holiday season!
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