When was the last time you walked through your own front door as if you were a guest? Your home’s first impression is made as you approach the front step. There are simple updates and DIY projects you can do to enhance your front entrance. Here are a few quick front entry tips, including outdoor decorating and landscape ideas, that will up your home’s curb appeal for a more inviting appearance.

Winter Clean-Up

It’s time to sweep off the porch and give your entry a once-over. Here in Minnesota, this time of year we see plants that didn’t make it through our harsh winter. Walk your walkway. Does your mulch or landscape rock need enhancement? Look for plants that need to be removed. I have original shrubbery and the tops are alive and the base of the plant is leggy, I have to get them out this year!

Also, evaluate your porch or front step area. Is there clutter you can remove? Is your doorbell functional? How’s your front door, could it use some paint? Is the welcome mat looking shabby, does it need replaced? Once you consider what updates can be made, consider these tips for coordinating your updates.

 Front porch decorated with chairs, rug and wreath

Pretty Porch

Depending on the size of your porch, consider what kinds of accents you can add. I think having live plants on the front porch is a must. You can vary the size and shape of containers to add interest. I add a fern every year to my porch, it fills up space and they are easy to grow. I’m not a fan of plastic or silk flowers, however they’ve improved a lot, so if you’re going to go with artificial, I recommend something high quality that looks real.

If you have room for a rocker or a bistro set, update it with weather resistant pillows in a stylish fabric. Add a throw for texture or a new garden accent stool for functional seating. In addition to a welcome mat, consider laying down a larger outdoor rug to give the front porch a polished look.

See related post: What You Need to Know Before Painting Your Furniture

These little accents are eye-catching opportunities to coordinate your exterior colors together. Study how your siding color, shutters or other architectural details, work with your front door color and make your selections accordingly.

Updating Your Front Door Color

If you want a pop of color on your door, make sure the accent color appears at least three times in the exterior space. Your door color should coordinate and resonate with planters, pillows or furniture so there is balance. It can also impact with your choices for landscaping, such as the color of your annual flowers or hanging baskets.

You also have to think about how the sun hits your door. Your home’s orientation to the sunrise and sunset will impact how the color appears.

Here’s a great tutorial on how to paint your door from Sherwin Williams.

You may not be able to paint your door a new color because of an HOA rule, but you can also make an impact by hanging a wreath or some kind of welcoming botanical.

Target sells a preserved boxwood wreath that I think adds great style.

Extra Tip: Don’t just save the best for your guests. I painted my service door on the side in the garage, so I see the color of the doors when I come home. It’s fun and it makes me smile when I come through the door.

Outdoor Lighting

One inexpensive change you can make is to update your exterior lights on the garage and porch. Good outdoor lighting is important for both safety and convenience.  You can add some solar lights to up-light your landscaping at night, which adds to the first impression in the evening, or add lanterns on posts or shepherd’s hooks for additional general lighting.

Make an Impression

I fully believe all the areas of your home should make you smile. Now that your porch is refreshed and the perfect cozy spot to relax with a cup of coffee, make sure as you enter that front door, your interior entryway achieves the same warm and welcoming vibe!

If you’re looking for help on updating your entry or in finding ways to renew the beauty in any of your interior spaces to be more personalized and unique to what you love, contact me!

[bs_icon name=”glyphicon glyphicon-envelope”] marsha@shashainteriors.com.