Home & Garden

Great Southern Porches

Porch-sitting is more than a pastime in the South—it’s a way of life. These revered spots are places to beat the heat, connect with friends and neighbors, and extend your living and entertaining space. Here are some of our favorites—cue the sweet tea and the glowing sunsets.

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“This is where we live in the summer,”says designer Erika Powell of the screened in back porch of her Florida home.

photo: Emily Followill

Vintage balloon-back garden chairs and containers filled with ivy, ferns, and herbs create a lush backdrop on the front porch of Atlanta interior designer Barbara Westbrook’s bungalow in Atlanta’s Whittier Mill Village.

Emily Followill

The covered porch of Anna and Dan Kahoe’s home in Washington, D.C.’s Logan Circle conveys the cozy feel of an interior room, thanks to drapery treatments, a vintage rug, and a mix of eclectic seating.

Patricia Lyons

A diminutive porch on the guesthouse restored by John and Carolyn Malone in Madison, Georgia. The structure is one of four restored antebellum cabins on the property.

Emily Followill

Another spectacular spot to sit at the Malones’s restored antebellum home.

photo: Emily Followill

Architect David Thompson created a modern fish camp in South Carolina that lives a bit like a giant porch, with panoramic views of the surrounding Lowcountry.

Julia Lynn

Interior designer Cortney Bishop chose a summery shade of blue and custom salvaged wood furniture for her screened porch on Sullivan’s Island, South Carolina.

Cortney Bishop

Stephen Stirling and his dogs Billy and Sally relax on the gallery porch of his restored 1840s Creole Cottage near Bayou Teche, Louisiana.

Brie Williams

Built in the 1840s, Stirling’s cottage is made of cypress and designed to weather whatever Louisiana dishes out.

photo: Brie Williams

Stirling’s forty-two-foot-wide front porch is complete with ceiling fans and green hurricane shutters.

photo: Brie Williams

The Massengale home, one of a row of “sister” houses built by the architect Henry Howard in New Orleans, Louisiana in the 1860s.

photo: Alison Gootee

Mount Fair—a property that dates back to 1747—is one of the best-preserved antebellum farms in Albemarle County, Virginia.

photo: Eric Piasecki 

From beneath a pergola on the side of Mount Fair’s main residence, guests face a preserved smokehouse that overlooks the north lawn.

photo: Eric Piasecki 

This Virginia hunting and fishing retreat overlooks a stream where the brookies are starting to bite.

photo: Kip Dawkins Photography

The porch fireplace was constructed using local stone, and the floor was milled from local black locust wood.

photo: Kip Dawkins Photography

Not one, but two haint blue porch ceilings at this historic Virginia home.

Patricia Lyons

The welcoming porch at a South Carolina beach house that three generations share.

photo: Brie Williams

Event designer Keith Robinson on the porch of the home he revived in Chattahoochee Hills, Georgia. “I plan to be here for the rest of my life,” he says. “I feel like I have found my dream.”

Nick Burchell

A charming double porch greets guests at the home Louisa Pierce’s Nashville, Tennessee home.

photo: Caroline Allison

Two full-length porches look out onto the Vernon River at this Savannah, Georgia home.

photo: IMKE LASS

This Tennessee farmhouse’s modern kitchen addition was designed to include a sleeping porch on the second floor.

photo: Caroline Allison

Located on Johns Island, South Carolina, this Lowcountry river cottage was designed by architect Cooter Ramsey, and in includes a wall of French doors that allow for easy access to the front porch.

photo: JOEY AND JESSICA

Laurie Durden installed a mirror on her porch to reflect the greens and white from her garden, making the space feel larger. Pillows, throws, and a soft rug underfoot bring the indoors outs.

photo: Brie Williams

A highlight of this circa-1875 Victorian home outside Murfreesboro, North Carolina, is the front porch which wraps around both sides of the house.

photo: Patricia Lyons

The woodwork had slowly deteriorated over the years. So the new homeowners refurbished the carved-wood fleur-de-lis that hang down from the outer edges of one porch roof.

Patricia Lyons

A peaceful view from the porch of this Cashiers, North Carolina cabin.

photo: Brie Williams

Patrick Dunne’s country house, Serenity, on Bayou Carron in Washington, Louisiana.

photo: Brie Williams

Two wings added to the limestone facade of this West Virginia home were made to look as if they were built over many decades.

photo: Patricia Lyons

Louvered doors set a welcoming, breezy tone on the front porch of Myrtles Plantation in St. Francisville, Louisiana.

Cedric Angeles

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