Category Archives: Freestanding Porches

Existing Detached Covered Porch Converted to Indoor Room with Outdoor-Living-Room Feel at Lake Murray

Lakeside pavilion on Lake Murray, SC.

Interior of lakeside pavilion on Lake Murray, SC.

Archadeck of Central South Carolina just completed a terrific project for a homeowner residing on beautiful Lake Murray. We started with only an existing concrete patio, a roof and an outdoor fireplace that offered stunning views of the water, but no protection from insects and changing weather conditions. The family’s goal was to create an inviting space that could be used year round so they could take advantage of entertaining with friends at any time.

It was important to the homeowner that the outdoor feel be maintained with the new design so that hanging out in the space still had the feeling like everyone inside was on vacation and not feeling like they were stuck indoors. They were going after an airy, open resort-type mood so that it felt very much like a getaway.

Before Archadeck of Central SC began the trasformation of this space:

Before Archadeck of Central SC began the transformation of this space.

We were able to work with the existing structure to save the client a bunch of money. We simply added walls, doors and sliding glass windows to create the vibe and feeling of an outdoor room while everything is protected inside so that it safeguards from harsh weather and nasty biting critters. Everyone can enjoy dining, relaxing, and even watching TV from the big screen mounted above the fireplace’s mantel (and hidden behind doors so that it can’t be seen when not in use). The owners wanted the equivalent of a lakeside living room, and that’s what Archadeck of Central South Carolina gave them.

The expanse of low-maintenance vinyl windows does not hide the views of the surrounding trees, landscape and lake. On beautiful days the windows slide open to take advantage of the cool breezes and sounds of outdoor wildlife. Even if the weather gets wet or wild, the family can sit nestled inside while still enjoying the outdoor feeling thanks to all the glass. There is tons of room for seating inside in separate zones all within the same space. Lots of guests can be simultaneously dining, playing board games or relaxing on the couch watching the ball game. It’s also the perfect spot for a big party when celebration time arises.

Completed pavilion on Lake Murray, SC:

Completed pavilion on Lake Murray, SC.

Interior of completed pavilion on Lake Murray, SC.

Interior of completed pavilion on Lake Murray, SC.

The entire structure is made of materials that require minimal upkeep so the family can enjoy their time in their new outdoor room instead of maintaining it. It also fits perfectly into the landscape and is in a similar style to the neighboring homes so that it blends beautifully into the area.

Archadeck of Central SC three generations of quality outdoor structures

The Archadeck of Central SC team – Mike Reu, Marshall Reu and Tucker Reu

If you’ve got a space you’d like to enclose for extended year-round use as a three or four season room (or want a brand new one built from scratch), give Archadeck of Central SC a call today at (803) 603-2160 or via email at centralsc@archadeck.net.

 

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Let’s all go out on the porch and sit a spell

Central SC relaxing porch designsNothing could be finer than growing up and living in the South. There are things that happen here that most other folks look upon as foreign. Porches are one. In the northern states, sunrooms are more prevalent, and for good reason; sometimes it is just too cold to be outside there. But here, below the Mason Dixon Line, much of the summer is spent on the porch for the practical reason that it is far too hot outside. During the spring, the porch is a welcomed escape from the cabin fever of winter, and during the fall we use it to stretch out as many outdoor living days as possible before Old Man Winter arrives. All in all porches are a simple pleasure and a necessity to fulfill the true outdoor living lifestyle.

Porches of every size, shape and style — front porches, back porches, screened porches and open porches —  all provide the open air, breezy relief from the summer heat while also protecting you from the sun and insects. And although they are all quite nice, a back porch offers the most versatility in function. Archadeck of Central South Carolina custom designs and builds porches that can breathe fresh air into your home and connect the outside with the inside. This outdoor living area provides additional living space that gives you a place to relax on nice days and even on the not so nice ones if it is screened in. Your back porch can be a small space that is used for intimate gatherings or barbeques or a large wrap around porch that can accommodate parties and entertaining. No matter the size, be it open or screened, a back porch addition can improve the appearance of your central South Carolina home and increase its property value.

Columbia screened porch and deck combination at Halloween

Columbia screened porch .

The selection of a screened or open porch is one of personal preference. An open porch  can serve as an outdoor room with multi-functional versatility. Use it as a place to relax or as an outdoor dining room perfect for dinner parties or family gatherings. Open porches also give homeowners a safe haven to continue enjoying the outdoors even on days when the weather is less favorable because they are protected from the hot sun and unpredictable summer rainstorms. With an open porch you get the benefit of circulating fresh air with the bonus of a roof that provides shelter from the elements. Ceiling fans are a smart addition to an open porch and provide necessary air circulation to keep the temperatures pleasant, especially in our area where temperatures during the summer can soar into the double digits!

Archadeck covered porch outdoor living

Archadeck covered porch.

A screened porch provides the identical benefits of an open porch with additional protection from pesky insects, debris and partial protection from pollen. This type of porch is especially important if you have family members with allergies (either to sun, pollen or insects) who still want to enjoy the outdoors. Alone, this type of outdoor living structure is versatile, making it exceptionally popular. When created with multiple zones for relaxing and entertaining, it can be the perfect spot to give you a little more solitude, calm and quiet as opposed to a deck or patio, which are exposed. Additionally this outdoor room, while still letting you feel you are savoring the natural world outside, is just right for accommodating parties and more informal socializing. Pair the screened porch with a deck or patio and you have an outdoor living space combination giving you the best of both worlds with protected areas and open spaces.

Archadeck of Central SC three generations of quality outdoor structures

The Archadeck of Central SC team – Mike Reu, Marshall Reu and Tucker Reu

Giving a face-lift to your home by adding a back porch can help give your family the extra space they need to spread out. As this area’s premiere outdoor living space contractor, we would enjoy the opportunity to work with you to translate your porch visions into a design that will fit the way your family functions. Our commitment to excellence in outdoor structure design and building ensures your unique project will bring enjoyment and pride for many years to come! Call Archadeck of Central South Carolina at (803) 603-2160 today for a free design consultation at or email us at centralsc@archadeck.net.

 

A trend steeped in superstition began in SC and is still popular today — blue porch ceilings

Central SC blue porch ceiling

Why so blue? The origins of the blue porch ceiling is based in much fact and folklore.

You might have noticed the distinct use of the color blue on porch ceilings as you flip through the spring issue of your favorite home and garden magazine. Blue porch ceilings can range in tone from the palest of powder blue to shades of periwinkle and wedgewood. The trend of painting the porch ceiling blue  was once considered only a Southern tradition but is now prevalent all over the country. The practice is based on much more than just the creative use of color. In truth it lends a romantic charm to the interior of the porch, but there is much mystery as to why and how the practice first originated.

The basis of painting porch ceilings blue may have begun with regional influences. Aurora blue is a popular shade of blue used on porch ceilings in the Northwest. The color’s origins are closely associated with the Christian communal society called the Aurora Colony, which became popular in the 1850′s. Among the blues used on porches along the East coast, we look to the popularity of Victorian and Colonial architectural styles that were popular and can still be seen today in historic cities like Boston.

Victorian home with terra cotta exterior

This vintage Victorian uses many colors associated with nature, including terra-cotta.

Pale blue tones that mimic the blues of the sky have always been popular for Victorian style homes. Victorian period homes have long been associated with integrating the colors of nature within their exterior color schemes. These include earthy tones such as ochre and terra-cotta along with blue reserved for the porch ceiling to remind them of the blue sky even when the days were overcast and gray.The use of these colors serves as a  constant reminder that brighter days lie ahead.

Along with regional influences, the desire of many homeowners to paint their porch ceiling blue is based on enjoying a bug-free porch experience. Some believe that painting the ceiling of your porch in this cool hue discourages birds and bees from building their nests in the ceiling. It is believed the color tricks the intruding insects or birds into thinking they have actually reached the sky. According to Sherwin Williams, most credible sources discredit this belief. However, this belief could be seated in historical truths.

Beautiful porch with blue ceiling.

Beautiful porch with blue ceiling.

When blue paints were first used on ceilings, they were usually milk paints, which often had lye mixed into the composition. Lye is a known insect repellent, which would explain why insects would avoid nesting on a painted porch ceiling. As milk paint has a tendency to fade over time, giving it a rustic look, homeowners would usually need to repaint their home every year or few years, covering the existing coat with a new coat of paint, and therefore a fresh coat of lye as well.

There are many theories on how blue porch ceilings became a tradition that has endured for generations in the South. One of the most widely believed theories arises from within South Carolina. Here folklore suggests that blue porch ceilings originated out of the fear of haints. Southerners, especially in and around the Low Country region of South Carolina, have a name for the color of ceiling paint used on porches – the soft bluish-green tint is referred to as “Haint Blue.” Just the name itself sounds spooky, huh?

The term “haint” is a Southern colloquialism defined as a ghost, apparition or lost soul — also defined as the spirit of a dead person or animal that can appear, in visible form or other manifestation, to the living.

Haint Blue, which was also used on door and window frames as well as porch ceilings, was believed to protect the residents from being “taken” or influenced by haints.The superstition evolved from the inability of the spirit to cross water since the lighter shades of blue mimic the color of water. Others believe that Haint Blue will protect the house and its occupants from evil spirits.

Open porch and sunroom combination in Elgin, S.C.

This open porch and sunroom combination in Elgin, SC, is timeless in its design.

Deciding what you believe in regard to the practice of painting porch ceilings blue is left for you, the reader, to ponder. However, one fact does stand out: blue is a calming color that promotes relaxation and peace. It also mimics the natural tranquility and beauty of sunny days and clear skies — with this in mind, is it any wonder why a homeowner would choose blue to beautify their outdoor space?

Many homeowners choose to paint their porch ceilings blue simply because of the way it makes a room look and feel. We even see the trend carrying into the modern screened porch and 3-season rooms of today. Blue is a calming color, so using it to paint an area of the house that’s intended for relaxation makes sense — leaving superstitions and insects by the wayside!

Archadeck of Central SC three generations of quality outdoor structures

The Archadeck of Central SC team – Mike Reu, Marshall Reu and Tucker Reu

No matter what style or color reflects your own personal tastes, Archadeck of Central SC can plan, design and build a custom porch that speaks to your individuality. If this includes translating your vision of the ideal porch through custom colors or trim, we embrace designs that think “outside the box.” Contact us for a free design consultation today to learn more about our exquisite custom porch designs. (803) 603-2160
centralsc@archadeck.net

Visit our front porch and portico photo gallery and our covered porch photo gallery located on our website to see more of our quality porch designs.