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Easy Ways to Update Your Outdoor Living Space

Easy ways to update your outdoor living space

One of the fastest ways to up your home's curb appeal is by painting your front door a bright and welcoming color. It's also a great way to try out a bold color without the risk (or labor) involved in painting your entire exterior in a more daring tone. Keep in mind that bold doesn't always mean bright, either-graying down the hue can make it more livable and help it blend in better with the surrounding plants and greenery. When painting your front door, always use an exterior paint and stay away from glossy finishes if you want to hide an older door's imperfections.

Superstitious Southerners often painted their porch ceilings "haint" blue, a soft blue-green, to ward off evil spirits called haints. Still, even if you're not afraid of ghosts, a fresh coat of blue paint is a great way to add visual interest. For a classic soft blue hue, try Benjamin Moore's Clear Skies or Sherwin-Williams' Sea Salt. Or, go bolder: "I prefer a rich navy like Benjamin Moore's Deep Royal-a striking contrast to light siding or brick," says Portland, OR designer Caitlin Wilson. For even more impact, pair your selected blue hue with a creamy white exterior paint (like Benjamin Moore's Cloud White) that will draw your eyes up the ceiling.

Paint can add color and protect your porch floor from the outdoor elements. For bare wood, use a primer. If it's already been painted, lightly sand the surface to improve adhesion, making sure to scrape and spot-prime peeling areas. Apply one to two coats of paint made for high-traffic areas (the porch floor of the lake cottage pictured above is painted in Benjamin Moore's Narragansett Green), or simply choose a deck stain to let the wood's natural beauty show through.

Make your outdoor area a great space to be in this summer!

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