Thursday, June 13, 2013

Porch Swing? Yes, please! Part 1

This month's Better Homes and Gardens features a beautiful deck-turned-screened-porch reno and the star of the show (imho) is the porch swing. 

Yes, the pic I snapped of my magazine (with my phone) is crappy but I went to THE END of the internet and couldn't find the original so you'll have to deal with this one.

Jacki has been dreaming of naps on the porch for some time. She's even researched it extensively. (read: spent hours on the internet)

As you can see, there are a ton of options out there. You can build from scratch or order the whole thing online. Since Jacki is married to a contractor, we know which option she chose!

Part 1 of how Jacki got her groove back:

(note: this does not involve Taye Diggs)

Her covered back porch is long and narrow and she was dreaming of a space she could lie down, snuggle in and take a nap. A traditional porch swing wouldn't accommodate any snuggling so she convinced Patrick to build a bed swing.

Yes, that is a chin-up bar. Jacki is wAYYYY outnumbered at her house.

Patrick's (the handy hubby) plans were based on a twin mattress with additional room for pillows (of course!).  The mattress was ordered from Foam For You.  It was important to use Dacron which is fast drying. The splurge was the Sunbrella custom made cover for the mattress. No need to worry about fading or water damage here.

Twin mattress with an outdoor fabric cover.
Don't mind the chin up bar in the foreground.
Traditional Swing Detailing

With a heavy frame and a load of loungers, this bed can be heavy! If you don't want your bed to come crashing down, you should hire a skilled carpenter to make sure the ceiling is up for the job before hanging and test driving. Jacki happened to have a carpenter with mad skillz on hand.

It's very important to quality control your work.

Patrick used 1" manila rope (about a buck a foot) and weaved eye splices in the ceiling end of the rope. The other end slips through slightly oversize holes in the arms and through the side of the base frame. This end is secured with a simple overhand knot under the frame. The ends can be dressed up with lashing or left to fray a bit.

Now that it is secured to the ceiling, we can get busy decorating it!

Friends, this is what $200 worth of pillows looks like!

Most of the pillows and accessories came from World Market. You can see the collection here.

I love this picture of Nathan resting his broken arm. Jacki's grandmother made that afghan in 1974 in case you couldn't tell.

The project isn't finished but we couldn't wait to let you see our plans for outdoor summer fun! Stay tuned for more pics of the completed porch bed swing. We still need to add some side slats and paint it of course. I'm thinking a charcoal gray would be nice. We're also working on a sweet discount with our friends at The Original Charleston Bedswing!


  1. I wish I could make this! I live in a rental....oh well, come visit my BBQ!

  2. Thanks for stopping by Jenny! We'll swing by your place shortly!

  3. Nice clean design. Bed swings are just so, so functional, fun, relaxing, everything. If you have the space and overhang, put in in!

  4. Where did you order the cover from? Directly from sunbrella?


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