Real Rooms: Cape House Porch Update


Hope everyone had a great Halloween weekend! We spent a bit of it down on Cape Cod at my parent's house (which is why I'm writing about this today!). If you've been following along for awhile, you know about the summer beach house my parent's own on the Cape and about how they totally renovated it a couple of years ago (read about it and see some pics here) as they plan on retiring full time here. If you're somewhat new - Cape Cod is like my second home. Since I was in college, my parents have had a beach house there. Its only about 45 minutes away from Paul, Maura's and my house in Southeastern Mass., so we're there all the time, especially in the summer.

Before the house got renovated, it had a cute little screened in porch that connected the house to the garage. We would spend a ton of time in there...chatting, reading, eating, playing. Part of the reno was converting the porch into interior living space. Since we loved the function of it so much, my parents made one of the new rooms into what we call "the porch" even though its totally inside the house (they even moved the old porch wicker furniture into the new room). I originally blogged about this room back in May of '09 (read that post here). Here's what the porch looked like in the new house, with the old furniture.

{to add to that outdoor porch feel and to separate this room a bit from the rest of the open house concept, my mom had the builders install beadboard on the ceiling and painted it a lovely blue}

Mom and I were thinking of painting the white wicker furniture black and getting some new cushions for a quick update. Uhm, so its November of 2011. And we never did it. Instead, my mom recently decided to just move on and treat herself to new furniture. She still wanted to that indoor/outdoor feel though, so she stayed with "wicker" but in a black finish (and a larger, more comfy profile to accommodate the guys like my dad) to coordinate with a lot more of the things in her newly updated home . (The whole place is really cool, she's still got a subtle coastal vibe going on without everything being blue and white.) She took a risk with the cushions (that I think paid off!) and went with two different fabrics...a hydrangea floral on the seat backs and a stripe on the seats themselves. And instead of three chairs, she upgraded to four. Here's the new stuff in the space:

{sorry about the dark pics, we were in the middle of a nor'easter!}

Here's a more accurate shot of the two fabric patterns:

A new area rug is definitely in store (as well as coffee table - probably round? - and some side tables). Mom is thinking she'd like a sea grass or jute or sisal rug. Anyone have any recommendations? To be honest I'm not even sure of the difference between all of them. Is one softer than the others (we play a lot with Maura on the floor here)? Doesn't someone (PB, Ballard, I forget) make a rug out of some other, much more comfy material, that is woven to look like a sea grass/jute rug?

For now, we love how they tie in much more with the adjoining dining room and kitchen. The black helps bring these spaces together and all the warm subtle tones in the fabric (beige, taupe, butter, cream, olive) go nicely with the walls, kitchen cabinets, and counter tops.

Plus, they get the A-Ok from this one:)

What do you guys think? Are the two different fabrics ok together? (Mom was worried when she placed the custom order but I reassured her that they would look good together.) I'll try to be back later in the week with some pics of how their master bedroom is coming along!


  1. Wow! So pretty! How did your little girl get so big so fast! What a cutie!


  2. How fun to have the house at the Cape! I have been in the market for a natural fiber rug too and want to make sure it is soft. I think jute is the softest and PB has a jute/chenille rug that as gotten good reviews and is supposed to be soft.

  3. Gorgeous! The black wicker is great and I love the fabrics ... risk well taken :). Completely random, but I actually think the rug that's under the kitchen table would look amazing with the new cushions. :)

  4. Oh yes! The cushions are beautiful together. What a great space. I love the idea of an "indoor porch" and that your mom even thought to use beadboard on the ceiling and paint it blue!

  5. Your Mom did a fabulous job! Love the fabrics together and how the black really pulls in the colors from the kitchen. I am on board with Jenn's idea about the dining rug, then maybe add a different rug there, maybe something with a bit of green.
    I have never been to Cape Cod, it's on my bucket list for sure!


  6. Great job Sarah's Mom!! The new cushions and chairs are gorgeous and I love that she mixed and matched - it really works! I second Suzy's comment on the jute/chenille rug from PB - that is the one that I've read good things about. I love the one that we just got from Crate & Barrel but it's not super soft, but very durable and great texture. Your family has a beautiful home - what a great getaway for all of you - and lots of memories for Maura to grow up with. Looking forward to seeing more about this home - I'll have to read back on your prior posts on this too.

  7. Thanks, you guys! (Mom, are you reading this?!) Thanks for the heads up on the PB jute/chenille rug, we will check into that! You guys are going to love their bedroom:)

  8. I love the pattern mixing on the chairs. It really looks great. And how lucky is Maura to have such a great place to make memories with her grandparents?! My grandma is no longer here, but I have so many great memories from her wonderful house in New Mexico. Looks like such a fun place.

  9. Love your mother's taste! My sunroom (my haven) has: four wicker chairs with cushions; a round wicker ottoman with a narrow "cushion" in coordinating fabric on top. Area rug is a man-made sisal (easy on bare feet) with 3rd co-ordinating border.

    Maura is just delish!

    Denise (yes, me)


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