Sunday 30 September 2012

The Ultimate In Thrifty Decor!

I know I said my front porch was entirely done with thrifted items, but I think the side porch is the ultimate in thrift, gift, reworked and found!

You see, the porch itself is a found object.  I set out to repair a broken step on the porch.  When I removed it, the boards underneath were rotten, so I removed them as well.  By the time I finished removing all the rotted boards, I had - ummmm - NO PORCH LEFT!  This is not a good thing.

As it happens, my neighbour was replacing his porch with a deck and gifted me with it.  A couple of guys carried it over to my place and there it sat, on it's side, for a year. That's attractive and oh so useful! This summer, I hired a couple of teenage guys to lay patio stones I pulled up when the landscaping was done in the back and move the porch into place on top of them.  It's set on deck post blocks that my BIL gave me when he pulled his deck off.

A couple of coats of white paint, some stencilled house numbers and Kellswater painted on the top step and she doesn't look too bad! ~

Then, I was given a very ugly, old window box. ~

Haul out the paints to give it a weathered look and draw some lines on to simulate boards with a permanent marker and it's not half bad.  Even the cascade petunias were gifted as seedlings! ~

To switch it out for Thanksgiving was about a 10 minute effort.  The old, wooden ladder was salvaged from my Dad's garage and held planters of watercress all summer.  I love the layers of paint and plaster that show how well this ladder was used!  I strung some dollar store garland, faux grapes and grapevine on it to celebrate the season. ~

I've had this wreath for several years and added some blue, silk hydrangeas to it for summer. ~

The simple switch was made with four bunches of silk leaves, from the dollar store, that I already had on hand. ~

Here she is all done. ~

Total cost for porch and decorations = $0.  I did pay the guys $60 to install the porch and bought two quarts of white paint to spruce her up.

The porch looks over the hosta bed I planted from the ones my sister pulled out of her gardens. ~

You must admit this is the ultimate in thrift, gift, reworked and found and that I have stayed true to the commitment to it that I made last summer!  Feel free to clap and shout Bravo as I take my bow!


  1. fabulous -- i admire your energy and keen eye!

  2. Clap, clap, clap, woohoo! Maureen your house is so beautiful, I love coming over and looking at your house. It's like stalking without the psychotic undertones.

    Awesome job, at my favorite price!

  3. Great job indeed - imagine the porch fitting onto your house. Sure looks great, as does you wreath, step ladded decorated and window box (well the cat looked great in the box too).

  4. You got a porch free - I think that's the best score ever! Looks fabulous - love that old ladder!

  5. Wow! this is my favorite type of project, thrifted, gifted, and reused. It all turned out gorgeous.

  6. Definitely clapping over here. Nicely done. I love the switch-outs for the new season.

  7. BRAVO!!! I love the "Kellswater"! Beautiful! xo

  8. Your porch looks fresh and lovely. I LOVE the ladder to the side. Nice touch!
    Thanks so much for stopping by for a visit.
    Mary Alice

  9. Oh Bravoooo! That is one fabulous porch and the cost is truly priceless! Gotta love that! Oh and I love the cat in the box!

  10. That ladder is clever and vibrant...and short!

    1. LOL She's only calling the ladder short because I said I would NEVER go up on the huge one her husband is using to paint a cathedral ceiling!

  11. Thank you for your comment, Maureen. I love all your gorgeous Fall decorations, so beautifully presented. TFS. I am now a follower of your blog and look forward to return visits. I invite you to join me as well on my blog at
    Hugs, Gayle.

  12. Beautiful job Maureen, but I think all of us cat owner's know that everything is "theirs"! Hence why I had to go searching for a pin cushion that I just made yesterday as a Christmas gift, made out of wool felt and didn't even have any catnip in it, lol.

  13. I absolutely love this, Maureen, and especially the rustic ladder!

  14. Love your new porch!!! It looks great, and I love the way you've decorated it. Great job! Mary

  15. How lovely is that porch of yours! I am in awe of your thifty ways lady, I am well impressed :)

  16. I love your porch. How great to get a recycled one. You did a fantastic job spiffing it up!

  17. I love your FREE porch! Fantastic job!

  18. Hi Maureen,

    Wow! Be still my 'aching for Ontario' heart!! Your two porches are perfect! I love the fact that you have done such a beautiful job all within a tiny budget. I adore the wreath redo and that ladder. So rustic of you to pop that orange against the black door! Your porches are exactly what I miss about my favourite season back home. Thanks for this gorgeous fall fix....(applauding for an encore right now!).

    Happy Autumn


  19. Oh wow! A recycled porch and planter all dressed up to look new. The ladder is so pretty with the fall leaves and grapes. I like both styles of wreaths.


  20. What a wonderful deal on the porch and you made it so special! Love the ladder and the window box (kitty in the window box is so cute!). It all is so perfect for autumn and such a great welcome for visitors!

  21. THAT is one of the cutest porches I;ve ever seen. Just precious. I love all your decorations on it are a really talented lady.
    Come see me sometime..:) I do lots of cooking, so I'll put on the coffee and we'll have a little cherry pie.:)

  22. Well Maureen, you have impressed me once again. Love the porch and the ladder is really great. You did an awesome job on that. Thanks for offering to help me with the wallpaper, but a little far for you come unless you come to bj's for cherry pie and coffee.
    Audrey Z.
    Timeless Treasures

  23. This is amazing! I love your porch, and I love your house color and the name on the steps and the ladder....