Storm Aileen, the first of our UK Autumn storms, swept through the West country last night. If anything’s a sign that the season’s truly turned, that tempest is. On the bright side, we are still feeling the benefit of warm, sunny intervals, opportune breaks to make ready the garden, house and home for more marauding weather fronts. This month, our attention turns to drafty, exposed front doors, which could do with some winter weatherproofing and some long-lasting shelter, as well as a smart sense of welcoming style lent by a robust door canopy or metal porch.
Porch canopies for your doorway
First and foremost, to add shelter for any front door, Garden Requisites offers a suite of designs of very long-lasting zinc galvanised, handmade steel porches and metal door canopies. These work particularly well with period properties and result in a very similar look to the more traditional lead roof, which are more expensive and often on the lead burglar’s shopping list.
Prepping doorways for Autumn
Front doors are well worth some regular attention to ward off damp, cold and wet weather conditions. Bare wooden doors can swell, warp and even split if they’re not well looked after. Applying an oil treatment to wooden front doors every two years or so will prevent rotting and leave a pleasing finish. If using a varnish, do make sure it’s a specialist varnish for exterior doors to avoid bubbling and flaking in extreme temperatures. For painted doors, a fresh lick of seasonal colour is always uplifting! Forever a pleasure to peruse are the heritage-friendly hues at Farrow & Ball. What’s it to be – Rectory Red, Lulworth Blue, Brinjal or Babouche?
If your front door leads to a drafty hallway, try fitting key hole and letterbox covers as well as old-school draft excluders and well-lined, heavy curtains. These will help save pennies on heating bills as well as bringing more core comfort to colder souls.
Enhancing period properties
Garden Requisites’ elegant porches come with sides that extend down to the ground and the Scoop and Georgian designs enhance most architectural styles, adding character to more modern brick houses too. To get a better sense of how they sit in situ, have a look through our Handmade Porches Pinterest board.
For a pretty cottage or country house touch, your aged zinc metal porch can be made with English wirework trellis sides that can be planted with pretty climbers, so welcoming in the summer months – think Roses, Clematis, Jasmine, Honeysuckle… This way for more trellis planting ideas. For period town houses a simpler style may suffice – consider a super-smart Georgian porch design with classic black ironwork supports.
Door canopies, without columns or sides, come scooped or arched and, as well as being available standard sizes, can be made to measure. Also, metal canopies aren’t just for front doors. They can enhance many building entrances, including long stretches above French patio doors. The porches and canopies are also simple to fix in place, with sturdy, matching fixings included and plenty of advice on hand from Hilary and team.
We do hope we’ve inspired you to use your precious sunny spells wisely over the coming weeks. If a porch with trellis is on your list (or a canopy with wall trellis), you’ll be needing some matching metal planters and will soon be safe in the knowledge that, come spring, you’re in pole position for your hardy climbers to get a head start.
Positive thinking in the face of the stormy, fire-lit evenings to come!
Hilary & John