I've posted some before and after photos on social media of our Mid City, Baton Rouge home. Today I'm going into more detail on what we did to the exterior to immediately add curb appeal. Long term plans are to add brick steps coming off the front porch with iron rails, along with a brick walkway leading to the sidewalk. We will remove the side steps and concrete on the right to create more flower beds and make the sides symmetrical. But that's all on the back burner for now.
When we purchased the home the front bushes were hiding the front porch and the color of the home just made me sad. The door didn't allow any light into the living room and I really dislike not being able to see who is at my front door. Originally, I wanted to paint the home SW Oyster Bay and the trim white but the color scared my husband so we compromised on SW Snowbound and Naval for the porch and shutters. I love how it came out and I think it fits well with the stained front door. Here are some progress shots below of the paint process.
When we took the dark screens off the window (they made the home feel so dark inside) we found out that the windows were painted dark blueish gray. The windows were original to the home and I loved them but they were not energy efficient and many were broken, damaged or painted shut. After getting a quote to repair and paint the original windows it made more sense to get all new windows. I really wanted to keep the original windows but it wasn't practical. The price was going to be the same to repair and paint them or replace them. After the white paint was up I was a little nervous that it was too white! But once we added the shutters, porch paint and door it really came together.
We found this door at Circa 1857. It is cypress and from a plantation that was built in the 1800s. The window and style was exactly what I was looking for. We had a few hiccups getting it installed but it was worth the hassle. Once it was installed we used tung oil to add color and shine. It was so easy, you just wipe it on. Not messy like staining can be. It's now my favorite part of the home. Hayes loves to play with the mail slot :)
I reallyyyyy wanted shutters. The windows seemed so bare without them but there was not much room on the sides near the door. I asked my uncle who is a builder if he could make it work and he said yes! He built the shutters and flower boxes in a day. It took me longer to pick the flowers! Hayes enjoyed helping. I plan on staining the boxes to match the door but the wood has to be dry and it's always rainy in Baton Rouge. I love the charm the boxes add to the front of the home and they are inexpensive. If I was handy I could have made them myself. I've seen tutorials online if you want to give it a go!
The next project was to freshen up the landscaping. We left some of the plants but had to take up the ones that died or were covered in paint. There is a beautiful hydrangea on the left next to the crepe myrtle that is starting to bloom this summer. I added some gardenia bushes because I love the smell their flowers give off, some lemon ball, and english lavender. I love the smell of lavender and it's supposed to keep the bugs away!
You can see in this picture why the front door drove me crazy. It didn't go with the feel of the house.
After landscaping, we added numbers to the front gable, put up our flag, and I ordered a cute magnolia wreath off amazon for the front door. The next project will be to add a gas light to the front left side of the door, make the hanging light flush to match the gas light and get a copper mail bin to match the door and gas lighting. If you have any questions about how we completed this look feel free to leave a comment below. Follow us on Facebook at Southerly Real Estate, Southerly Design, and on Insta at Southerly_la :)