For nearly 14 years I have dreamed of recreating our screen porch into a cozy, multifunctional, and fun mid-century sunroom. I am excited to finally include this renovation in the Spring One Room Challenge™ this year.
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The One Room Challenge™ is a biannual event every April and October. Each round, twenty design influencers are selected to take the challenge, as Featured Designers, and transform a space. Every Wednesday, the designers document their process while sharing their sources and professional advice over the weekly posts.
Then on Thursday each week, guest participates will share their own one room makeover on the blog with readers.
This year is the 19th season of the event, and will cover 8 weeks instead of the usual 6 weeks to give all participants the time to receive the materials needed in the current market.
Our Existing Screen Porch!
This is what the room used to look like a few summers ago.
To read even more details and the transformation and use of this room over the last 14 years, you can read all about in my updated post about our work in progress outdoor room.
The screen porch right now.
Over time, I have tried to accomplish different looks and uses for our screen porch. We have also put a lot of work in to trying to make it work out.
First thing we did when we bought the house in 2007 was to remove the moldy and smelling outdoor carpet in the room. That left behind a thick layer of glue behind in a space that was basically used for just storage for many years. My husband was in Physician Assistant school during that time and there just wasn’t any available funds to work on the room.
In 2013 we decided to fix up the space and spent most of that summer using different chemicals, and lots of elbow grease to get rid of the glue on the floor. Almost. Some spots just never came up.
Then we installed new screens and tried to use the room that next summer.
What never realized was how much we could hear the neighbor’s pool parties while in the room. Or that our dogs would enthusiastically bust through the lower half of the screens to protect us from intruders. The mailman and the meterman are the most evil of sorts don’t you know. Never mind the UPS delivery truck.
After repairing and replacing the screens a second time, my husband finally installed lattice boards on the lower half of the two screened walls and I painted them in the brown color of the trim of the house. These boards stopped the dogs from getting out but it also gave them a ledge to throw their front paws on – and their weight – to knock off the trim and eventually bust out the top of the screens.
We still had the noise from the neighbors as well and they didn’t appreciate the loud barking from our dogs every time they walked to their pump house or the dogs could hear the voices and laughter from their property. That is when my husband built three privacy and decorative fence panels to hide the neighbors. They appreciated it and so did we.
The dogs got older and the destruction of the room and furnishings ceased. For a few years we enjoyed summer dinners and smores with the family and I changed up the décor in the room with budget friendly and dog proof furnishings.
I spent many afternoons sitting at the table writing blog posts and wishing I could take a nap in the afternoon sunshine.
Through the years, we often talked about closing in the space and making it an all weather sunroom.
As with older homes, our home started to show some of the normal wear and decay and the screen porch room showed it the most. Along with a few rotting windows on the house, the screen porch room frame walls started showing signs of decay, mold, and rot. When we decided to replace all of the windows on our home this year, my husband included in the contract to have the two walls of the screen porch room replaced with new walls, new windows, and a heating/ac unit.
Our many conversations and dreams about transforming our screen porch room to a full all weather sunroom are finally going to happen!
My requirements for this room are many. I am not kidding.
- It needs a table to have a meal on warm summer nights with the windows open.
- It needs to be available for daytime working hours on the computer to take advantage of the bright sunshine.
- It needs to be a family gathering room for long chats and to watch TV.
- It needs to provide a comfortable spot for me to take long afternoon naps in the sunshine like a cat.
- It also needs to be a place for the dogs that also provides access to their outdoor pen.
And it needs to have a mid-century vibe.
To some I am asking a lot of just one room, but like I have said before, I have had 14 years to dream about this project.
My plan during this challenge is to show you how we worked through the design process. How we sometimes waited weeks for new windows – and workers to show up. The inspiration for the space on a budget. And the parts of the project we did ourselves to save money. There were many design related conversations about the decisions for a design that first has to be practical and functionable for a room to be used by four large dogs, two adults, dinner with our grown married children, and a new grandbaby coming to visit.
The new design of the sunroom will include a few mid century pieces we already own along with some new purchases, and makeovers of a few thrift store finds.
All in the next 8 weeks.
Next week I will share the first week of demo and reconstruction of the walls.
Colossians 4:2 “Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.”