Need design ideas to add curb appeal
January 23, 2014 in Design Dilemma
We purchased this house at the end of last summer and and need ideas to add curb appeal. We have already planned to take out the over grown shrubs in front of the windows and relace with shrubs that are lowere profile so as to not block the windows. We really do not like the white siding and thought about replacing with rock or a stucco type finish. Help!
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Warner Decor
Hi! I think your house is lovely! I would first start by replacing the planters on the sides of the door with something a little more inviting like this:

I don't know if this is possible because of the structure and makeup of your home, but you could consider installing a porch swing:

You would also be very surprised how much curb appeal goes up by adding small things such as throw pillows to a porch swing, simple because they really bring the area to life. I found this one that would blend well with the preserved boxwood listed above, as well as with the white swing:

If you wanted to add just a a pop of color, you could always consider painting the shutters and the door a different color. I have attached an image of blue shutters.

Good Luck!
January 23, 2014 at 7:15AM        Thanked by mgrimm10
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Take what you would spend on adding rock or stucco and hire a landscaper. You will be amazed at what a difference it will make. Ours was able to reuse large holly trees ( like yours) in another area of our yard and saved us a lot of money. He gave us a plan that we could execute in stages as it fit our budget. Paint your shutters and door. I'm betting you will love it.
January 23, 2014 at 7:36AM        Thanked by mgrimm10
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Specialty Doors
some larger lighting would be a nice change, get right of the huge overgrown bushes, and fill the planters in with lower\ fuller foilage.. plant some white & red roses to add some contrast.. remove most of the grass and put in a nice river rock. House has a ton of potential, very nice!
January 23, 2014 at 7:47AM      Thanked by mgrimm10
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I agree your home is lovely and the black/white - brick w/columns is a classic look that I wouldn't change (not worth the money). If you pull out the large bushes blocking the front windows you can have a fresh start. I'd redraw your beds to get more less lawn and more beds under the windows and have it curve to add a large spaces at the brick corners where the facing of your home steps back some. Softening corners is nice with maybe a larger tree that may flower (magnolias? or something) but not so close to the house as the bushes that are there now so you leave them from for future grown. Then plantings at the base and in the beds going from higher at the back to a shorter choice as you come to the grass line. Not sure where you are but azalea are pretty easy as are laurels, etc. You would get a lot out of creating a wider walkway w/out the cost of hardscape but by extending your planting beds to flank the walk to the curb & extend past the sidewalk to then fan out to have a bed around your mailbox and on the other side too. This will be a beautiful welcoming walk to your large porch and show off your wonderful brick mailbox. Lastly, if you want to really spend some money you could change your porch lights to something larger with more of a statement - loose the white trim on the door area so it's all black & add some big simple subtle planters at either side of the doorway that are larger with tall plantings then something lower that hangs over...with a nice large entry mat (all a good spend)... I"m not a fan of porch swings but you could get some beautiful southern porch rockers in black and accent them with beautiful pillows - OR (i just looked at your house again) go with two longer nice maybe black benches that wont block the windows / but will show off how big your front porch area is - make sure you do the same thing to both sides as your house begs for symmetry!!! All pretty inexpensive - simple and classic!!!
January 23, 2014 at 7:59AM        Thanked by mgrimm10
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I'd advise a "beef-up" of posts, doors and windows. What you have now is not sufficient in visual weight or materials to provide the statement your home could make. The hipped roof reminds me of French style and stucco is a popular medium there. However, stucco, like stone is a visually heavier material, so again beef up the trim.
Stone Residence 1
City: Kirkland Residence
January 23, 2014 at 8:06AM      Thanked by mgrimm10
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These are all great ideas, thank you all so much. We are really intrigued by the idea of adding the porch swing and/or the rocking chairs and using accent pillows for color. I never thought about making all of the door trim the same color as the door and think that will help a lot. As far as creating a wider walkway by extending the planting beds what plants would you recommend and should we have flowers somewhere to add color and a focal point? By the way we are located in Arkansas which i belive is Zone 7 for planting. Thanks and any other ideas comments are greatly appreciated.
January 23, 2014 at 8:12AM   
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Warner Decor
Love Arkansas! I'm from Fayetteville!
January 23, 2014 at 8:36AM     
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I think the biggest factor when choosing plant material is being realistic about maintenance and if you want to be replanting regularly or trimming/etc. OR if you have the benefit of hiring a landscaper to do this for you. Then, the 2nd is what'll live your soil, weather etc. 3rd the look you prefer. Flowers are GREAT and beautiful to change w/the seasons. I'd pick a few areas for that (depending on the above) like maybe patches near the steps up the porch, around the mailbox - and on the other side to match -and in the planters by the door! It's a beautiful corner lot and house you have : )
January 23, 2014 at 8:37AM      Thanked by mgrimm10
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you could consider korea boxwoods to run the walk with a little space for bulbs or something - you can leave the boxwoods a little soft or prune them to a formal boarder - it could be a nice look to give some height and structure to your landscape and then you can plant softer things around to balance the boxy lines....
January 23, 2014 at 8:39AM   
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John James O'Brien - Design for Inspired Living
Plants that work in a Mediterranean climate and that lend themselves to a more formal layout (e.g. lavender, rosemary, etc.) would transform your place. The bushes blocking windows have grown too large. Before tampering with the house, I'd focus on the landscaping--this could be a showpiece! Great bones ;-)
January 23, 2014 at 8:43AM        Thanked by mgrimm10
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Janet Woods
Oh please - don't do anything until you've talked to a professional landscaper. Really, that could be the only money you need to spend! Have a look at the Houzz photos so when you interview, you can show them an idea of what you want. It is really a blank slate that could be oh so wonderful!
January 23, 2014 at 8:50AM   
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Nancy Travisinteriors
Add some color. White sliding works. Add patio chairs 2 on each side with small table between. A big tree in center of yard with plants around it.
January 23, 2014 at 9:12AM   
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Nancy Travisinteriors
I agree get rid of large plants in front of windows.
January 23, 2014 at 9:13AM   
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B Paton
Have you considered painting the siding and pillars? Benjamin Moore has an article on their website re painting vinyl or metal house siding. The colours stone 2112-40 or Sag Harbour Grey HC-95, lots of choices depending on the colour of your roof and brick.
Might be a less expensive option for you. Painting the door and door trim the same would look great, as already suggested to you.
January 23, 2014 at 9:15AM      Thanked by mgrimm10
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Timberlane Inc.
Although painting your shutters is a good suggestion, we would recommend adding shutters that are properly fitted for your windows. If you placed a pair of radius top shutters on the existing windows, you may find that the curb appeal will enhance tremendously.

If you add stone or stucco to the the facade of your home, any color shutters would look great. It all depends on your design preferences. We would recommend for you to use our shutter snapshot application, available on our website, to see what radius top shutters would look like before they are actually installed.
January 23, 2014 at 9:49AM      Thanked by mgrimm10
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John James O'Brien - Design for Inspired Living
I've not taken time to do a very good sketch, but this may help in envisioning the difference cleaning up landscape can make. There are MANY ways to go and, of course, I can't see behind those bushes so the windows are likely not correct, but I do think that your best value will be in addressing landscape first, then consider addressing the proportions of the window framing and shutters. Real, functioning shutters require the size, placement and hardware that ensures a proper look. If you are a crafter or cook, the use of Mediterranean plants fits right in while requiring less water--fragrance, colour and form will do wonders. Good luck!
January 23, 2014 at 10:07AM        Thanked by mgrimm10
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I think the style is called Low Country, and is derived from the southern French vernacular. Stone facing is totally wrong for this style and I would put my money on the landscaping as others have suggested.

Looks much better without the bushes. I also think it would look better if the sidelights were painted white or if the frames around the door and sidelight glass were all painted one color, maybe something other than black.

I'm a bit of a shutter purist on traditional houses. The shutters would look better mounted on the casing and had shutter dogs, and had arched tops to actually fit the window, not almost fit the window. I might even consider taking them off for a more cleaner look, but that might emphasize that the arches on top differ from the fanlight above the front door. Grey or a similar color on the shutters would make the front look less choppy.
February 8, 2014 at 9:36PM   
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