Primitive Ideas for Porches


Primitive country decorating mixes elements from traditional American country, rustic and farmhouse styles. Featuring furniture like that you might find in a rural farmhouse or Colonial era log cabin paired with accessories often drawn from nature or crafted by hand, primitive country style adds a welcoming touch to your home, both indoors and out. Greet visitors with a porch decorated in primitive country style, and they will be tempted to stay awhile.


  • Few things are more symbolic of lazy afternoons on the porch than a rocking chair. Choose rockers that are weathered, perhaps with peeling paint, or add some punch by painting them traditional country colors like terracotta red, Colonial blue and mustard yellow. Wicker chairs are also often featured on primitive country porches. Drape a weathered quilt over the back, or fold it on the seat in lieu of a cushion. Chairs and settees crafted from willow branches are ideal for a primitive porch. Soften them with cushions covered in ticking material. A rustic farm table or worn picnic table provides a place to dine or play board games while an antique dough box or large crock turned upside-down stands in for a coffee or side table.


  • A screen door’s slam evokes the mood of a rural farmhouse on a summer day. You can capture that feeling by replacing your storm door with a vintage screen door. One that features peeling paint adds a more primitive flair. If it is not in the cards to replace your existing front door with one of weathered wood, paint it a traditional country color.


  • Don’t confine window dressings to indoors. Suspend small barn stars from twine, and hang them across the windows like swags. You could also use small grapevine wreaths in the same fashion. Grapevines intertwined with dried flowers and berries make good borders for your windows. Create a valance with twigs and vines.


  • Primitive country accessories add the final layer to your porch décor. Hang rustic signs that you craft yourself or purchase. They can feature appropriate sentiments like “What Happens on the Porch Stays on the Porch.” An unadorned grapevine wreath or weathered basket filled with flowers might embellish your front door. Hang a wrought iron chandelier from the ceiling. Electrify it or outfit it with candles for a more romantic glow. Wrap pillar candles in rag scraps, and arrange them on a piece of muslin placed on a table as a rustic centerpiece. A wooden bowl filled with rag balls ties it all together. Switch them out for gourds in the fall and pinecones and boughs in the winter. Plant crocks or galvanized containers with herbs, and place them on the steps for a fragrant and useful addition to your porch. Barn stars hung on outside walls are often featured on primitive style porches, but wooden game boards or vintage sifters also contribute to the country theme. A collection of rag dolls placed in a child’s rocker to one side of the door welcomes guests.

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  • "Seasons at Seven Gates Farm"; Mary Seehafer Sears; 1996

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