The concept of ‘Kerb Appeal’ is often discussed when it comes to selling houses. Although I’m not actually looking to sell my house I am looking to make a bit more of the outside of my cottage.
Kerb appeal is a bit of a funny term here as I don’t actually have a kerb of any description. You know in Coronation Street where people step out of their houses on to the pavement? Well you stride out of my house onto a few steps and then directly on to the road. Yes the ROAD. Admittedly a car passes every hour or so making a it a very quiet street but it’s a road nonetheless. I’m not sure if there ever was a pavement outside my home but now there’s just an area to park the cars.
In direct contrast we had an offer rejected on a house that quite frankly looked epic from the outside overlooking the green in a posh Northamptonshire village. We were gutted when we found out our dream home (from the exterior anyway) had been bought by a property developer, however a friend said at the time that you spend more time inside your house than looking at the outside. He suggested we look at a different house that could be fabulous on the inside but nondescript on the outside. He was right.
In my last house I was stuck with a wooden varnished door in a newish build block. I was so excited to get a real front door that could be painted. So excited that for the last three years it’s stayed Downing Street Black with a rather dubious paint job. I can take it no more and have started researching potential paint colours and door furniture. I’m focusing on five aspects to add the much needed exterior appeal, so here’s what’s made the current shortlist.
I have to accept that I’ll never have a front garden as such but there’s no reason not to add a bit of nature. How adorable is this super sweet set up in our slider? The clustered terracotta hydrangeas are beautiful but I think that someone may do off with the pots in the middle of the night if I put a few down the steps!
I realise I don’t have a Chicago Brownstone but I am quite taken by the idea of adding window boxes to the upper levels. Yes I’d need a ladder to repot them as the seasons change but there’s a lot less chance of me reversing into them if they are not on the ground floor.
Paint the Door
My friend Lindsay and I have been known to spend a time strolling round London on a Sunday door admiring Victorian and Georgian doors in the prettiest of colours. I’m pretty sure that we’re not the only ones to do this. Aren’t there some gorgeous front doors around?!
I am thinking a of using a dark and mysterious bluey-grey such as Farrow & Ball Railings. Despite it being the height of summer I am already imagining how a wreath will look against this backdrop at Christmas.
Change the Knobs and Knockers
At the moment we have a traditional brass urn-style knocker so I’d like to get a bit jazzier with the door furniture and perhaps add a foxier version or some other form of animal. I’ve found prices vary massively for a fox door knocker from just a few quid on eBay up to £50+. Some of their faces are a bit too sly for me too so any suggestions for a friendly vixen would be much appreciated. I’m currently quite taken by a little fellow I have found at Broughtons. One things for sure there are a whole load of wild animal styles available from eagles to serpentines and I’ve been really impresses by the selection at The Door Knocker Company.
Pick a Number
I really like the whole slate house-number-plaque thing and it’s very in keeping with my village. However as I was doing my research I started to be drawn to etched glass in the fanlight instead. Above the door frame we do have a small pane of glass that could either be replaced with a custom made panel or we could use one of the various window film treatments that are about. I am also a fan of very streamlined and simple brass numbers similar to some I have found at Holloways of Ludlow.
Light the Way
With limited street lighting, returning home in the dark is quite frankly a bit terrifying so I’d like to add an external light. The thing I’m finding tricky here is what design to go for. Do I embrace the house’s Victorian age or go more village cottage stylee?. As the rest of the elements come together I think I’m leaning more towards the heritage than the location and in that case may be better with a traditional lantern style outdoor light.
Do you door spot too? What colour have you painted your own front door and do you have any gems to share for door furniture and the like?
Image sources | Terracotta planters | Chicago window boxes | Front door with cat | Front door with mat | Fox knocker | Dragonfly hardware | Gold etched number | Brass house number | Fisherman Light | Cottage door