A back porch is a way we can relax and enjoy the outdoors especially when it is screened in. Back porches let you hang out with friends on a sofa, have some drinks or eat outdoors. But if you are not sure how to set up your furniture, then it isn’t relaxing until you find a solution. That is why one client reached out to me because she and her husband could just not find a layout that suited their needs.
Online design consult
My client reached out to me via Facebook Messenger and sent me some pictures to explain her situation. Pictures are a great way to show the space and explain the dilemma. Clients can also schedule an online consult via my calendar and we can set up a video chat. With stay at home restrictions, this is the best way to reach me and set up a time when we can meet and still meet social distancing measures. That way we can both stay safe but still get some work done!
Back porch furniture layout dilemma
My client requested a few things that had to work for the final design. First, she said the back porch wasn’t very functional. They had to be able to watch TV from the two swivel chairs that she and her husband loved to sit in. If you notice, the TV is in the upper corner by the sliding doors to the patio. They wanted to use the chairs so they didn’t have to swivel all the way around.
Second, they had a privacy issue where they could look into their neighbor’s living room from their back porch. So they were going to use the three potted plants along that side of the screened porch which would require shifting everything down closer to the sliding doors. By shifting everything, they were worried the pathway between the table and swivel chairs would be too narrow. They also wanted to be able to sit and look out at the golf course.
Back porch design ideas
By taking these two considerations into account, I came up with three potential ways to make the furniture fit.
First porch layout idea
Switch furniture places. By moving the sofa, coffee table and swivel chairs closer to the sliding doors, we then moved the dining table to the opposite side. I also placed the swivel chairs with their back to the golf course but they could view the TV. The sofa then looked out on the golf course. This keeps the furniture in two separate zones and an outdoor rug could be used under the sofa and chair seating to show it as one space. As for privacy, they could use the potted plants on the side wall, but I also suggested hanging a curtain rod and getting some outdoor-rated curtains as another option.
Second back porch design layout option
The second idea was to split up the furniture in three different zones. The first area just had the two swivel chairs and a side table, the second middle zone had the dining table and the third zone had the sofa with plants lined behind it for privacy. While the sofa wasn’t quite looking out on the golf course, the seating for the TV was ideal for the chairs and if you were sitting at the dining table.
Third porch furniture layout idea
The last idea had the furniture split up again in three zones but this time the couch was facing the golf course. The tricky part with this layout was the walkway between the dining chairs and the sofa and whether it got too narrow. This one wasn’t my favorite option but it was an option. Again we were able to have the chairs face the TV as requested by the homeowner.
The final furniture layout choice
The homeowners really LOVED option 1! It fit everything they wanted and made it functional for them. They said they would hang a rod and were excited to look for some outdoor fabric for some privacy. Here are the final pictures below after shuffling everything around.