Progress Report: Carport and Front Porch

Things are moving right along on the carport! The last update I showed you (ten days ago), the carport looked like this…

And now it looks like this…

When the siding and trim start going up, you know the project is nearing completion.

Doesn’t that look awesome!?

I’m so pleased with how this is turning out. Way back when I first started talking about adding a carport on the back of the house, I never envisioned that it would look this good. I envisioned some detached thing with a covered walkway between the carport and the house. So this far exceeds my original vision and expectations. I even hate calling it a carport, because that word often dredges up images of funky metal structures covering part of a driveway in front of a house, or some improperly planned and constructed lean-to type of structure stuck on front of a converted garage. The word “carport” doesn’t quite do this thing justice. I’d call it “a covered patio with a shingled roof that can also double as a covered parking structure,” but that’s a mouthful. 😀 So I guess “carport” will have to do.

And now to the front of the house, I’m slowly making progress on the front porch ceiling.

You know how some projects seem like they’d be quick and easy, and then you get started and realize that it’s going to take about four or five times as long as you thought because you failed to take certain things into consideration? Yeah. That’s been this ridiculous porch ceiling.

It’s not that big — about 22 feet by 5 feet. And yet, I’ve been working on this thing all week long. Of course, it doesn’t help that the temps during the afternoon have been over 100 for most of this week, which slows my progress to a snail’s pace. But I pushed through it, and finally got the trim boards installed, the nails punched in (for some reason, I had lots of nails that didn’t want to go in all the way), the edges caulked, and the nail holes wood filled and sanded. And after all of that, I was finally ready to paint at about 7:00 yesterday evening.

I only got the first coat on the ceiling, and didn’t even get all of that. I still have to cut in around the edges and paint the grooves with a brush.

I wasn’t sure if that was enough blue to actually look blue, so I posted on Instagram for input. I think those who said to add just a touch more blue edged out those who said it was perfect as is. I did go ahead and add just a tiny bit more blue to the paint that I’ll use for the second coat. Just a tiny bit, though.

And of course, now that it has paint on it, I’m seeing more areas where I need caulk. *Sigh* It’s just unbelievable how much work one little porch ceiling requires.

I’m also confused about how to paint the trim. You can see that I added a 1″ x 2″ piece around the edges of the ceiling. On the side wall and the front wall of the house, I plan to paint that gray just like the siding. But on the piece that’s towards the front (i.e., the street side) of the porch, I plan to paint that white so it blends in with the white parts that sit on top of the columns.

Those areas seem pretty straightforward to me. But the other side is not quite as straightforward to me.

First of all, this front part, as well as the part that wraps around the bottom and sits on the columns, should be white. There’s no question about that in my mind.

But where it gets fuzzy is this little triangle area on the side of the porch roof.

When the house as originally painted at the beginning of this year, they painted the trim pieces on the perimeter of the triangle area (all three sides) white, and then the little area inside the trim was gray. I thought that looked ridiculous, so I tried painting the whole thing white.  Frankly, I think that looks awkward as well.

The only other option I can think of is to leave the one trim board just under the soffit white, just like it is all around the house, and then paint the rest of the triangle area gray. That would include wrapping the gray around the bottom and onto the inside triangle area and right up the ceiling to match the other end of the porch.

But that seems a little strange to me because then the side part that sits on the column would be gray, while the front part that sits on the column would be white.

Aaarrrgghhh!! I have no idea what to do. I’ve been debating options in my mind all week, and still don’t have a solution.

Although it just occurred to me that one reason those triangles might look so strange is because they have the lap siding on them. Perhaps they should have been covered with completely flat pieces (i.e., one whole triangle cut from a piece of sheet siding) and attached so that the triangle areas don’t have those horizontal lines running through them. Then it would look separated from the actual house, and more like a separate front porch ceiling, and I could then paint the triangles (trim and all) on both sides white.

It also occurs to me that if I add another column (or half column) literally right up against the house, then that whole side roof section might make more sense also.

Does that make sense, or did I just make that totally confusing? Either way, if you have an idea of how to handle this, and what paint needs to go where, please share your thoughts!!

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    1. It looks white to me! Maybe it’s my monitor? It must be, because on my screen there literally is not a hint of blue to the color, and that just can’t be!

  1. Your carport is incredible. Honestly, if it were me I would use that as a nice covered patio with Beautiful comfy patio furniture and potted plants! Park your vehicles next to it!
    Happy 4th

  2. Kristi, I have a question about the roof. I hope I can make sense of my question. Where the new roof ties into the old roof, the valley looks like it actually dies out still on the roof, over the window that is to the right of the carport roof (the sunroom window?). Is that going to be a problem when it rains…meaning, will water stand on that little section of roof and start to cause a rot problem in the long run? Normally, the valleys come down and right to the roof edge and the water just sluices off naturally. How will your drainage work? Right now, with the drought we are having in South Texas, the idea of water being a problem is unthinkable, but I just saw that unusual valley and am wondering about it when and if we ever see rain again.

    1. I don’t know that I have an answer for that. 🙂 I do know that during the planning stage, the contractor said that where the new roof meets the flat roof over the pantry (that window is the pantry window), they’d have to do some extra wide flashing and take other things into consideration so that rain wouldn’t be a problem on that section, so I’m assuming they took those extra measures and maybe they just can’t be seen. There is that one piece of flashing that goes all the way to the edge (and maybe just a little past) the edge of the roof, so perhaps that’s part of their extra measures they took. I hate how that flashing looks there, but I can definitely see why it’s necessary. That ridiculous flat roof is just a thorn in my side. I wish I could get rid of it completely, but I’m not sure how that could happen on that 12-foot span just above the pantry.

      1. We had hips built over two of our three flat roofs. Everything had to be reroofed anyway, and the tear off on those two flat roofs would nearly cost as much as hipping them out which relieves any more roof problems.

  3. Just thought that I would share this with you. I just saw on This Old House, they were in Charleston, SC, and finished the Eliotborough Home. They used blue paint on all of the porch ceilings. I do not know what color they used, but maybe you can contact them and find out. I am sorry, but I cannot help you on the other! Blessings!

  4. I have a friend who is British and he calls the carport a car park. Makes me smile. Plant a few flowers around it and you’re set. A little more blue would be perfect on the ceiling. Your home is so beautiful!

  5. Not sure about the white vs. grey porch color question, but I think the additional column would make that end of the porch look more balanced with the 2 columns by the front door.

  6. I’d play with it in photoshop first, but maybe make the trim on the triangle more prominent to paint white then also a column.

    BTW, it’s really difficult to post a comment here these days. Server is, no doubt, getting slammed with interest in your work.

    1. I agree! Make the entire triangle a flat piece trimmed out and painted white. And add a column. I think that will help.

      1. I would definitely do a mock up image on the computer with the additional column before you go to all that work.
        That way you could see if the additional column makes things too look too crowded or out of proportion. You don’t want your solution to cause another problem. In web design, we call that scope (of work) creep. 😉

        I love the blue, maybe just a tiny bit more blue. Overall, I love everything you’ve done. We used to have a carport like this once and loved it!!

      2. I agree, either take the siding off the triangle or cover it up with a flat piece of luan, then paint it all white. I think that adding another post to the side of the house on the front porch will make the porch look smaller. JMHO.

  7. When I looked at Insta earlier on my phone the blue looked pretty, but just a shade too light. However, looking at your blog on my computer, I can’t see any blue tint at all. Interesting how the screen makes that much of a difference. I guess my phone is more accurate since the ceiling looks completely white on my computer! As far as what to paint on your porch, I think it would help to have the half column you mentioned to connect to the white trim and also to have a solid triangle piece all painted white. Maybe a quick mock up of the column would help you decide. All is looking great!!

    1. I think it’s also a matter of lighting. I took that Insta pic yesterday evening around 7:00, so about 90 minutes before the sun went down. I took the pics in this post at about 7:30 this morning. I’m always amazed at how different lighting throughout the day changes the appearance of colors so drastically.

      1. You are right– I was curious and looked at your blog on my phone to compare photos. Photos on my phone show a little bit of blue compared to my computer screen, but more of the difference is probably light from when you took the photos. That’s partly why it is hard to choose paint colors because they always seem to change throughout the day! I usually go with what I like best during the part of the day I will mostly be in that room. Can you see the ceiling looking out from your living room or will it only be noticeable for people coming up to the porch?

        1. There might be a sliver that’s visible from the living room windows, but not much. It’s very visible when looking through the front door, though.

    1. I agree. I don’t mind the hardie board, I wouldn’t go to the trouble of replacing that triangle. Just paint it all white and add the half column. Love the CAR PARK – that’s the term would use! I too was concerned about the area where the roof meets the sunroom roof. Too bad you couldn’t have just gone all the way with the new roof over the sunroom. But I know you have further plans for that too.

  8. IMO I would paint the triangle the house color. It’s the “gable” end of the porch not part of the trim. For the interior porch trim I would paint all of it white since it is trim.

    1. Since it looks so good, you could get fancy and call the car port a “porte cochere”. I agree with Sharon on the painting colors and where they should go.

    2. I so agree with Sharon! Oh and me personally, I don’t care for a half column against your house. I think the columns are for “holding” up the porch roof and a half column slapped up there would look like an afterthought.

    3. I was ready to post the same suggestions.

      The trim pieces going around the ceiling are trim, not part of the body of the house, and since the portion on the front will be white, the rest should be a well. Also, it will set off the beautiful pale blue of your porch ceiling. As you know, different colors contiguous with other colors make them look quite different. You don’t want the side against the house looking different from the side against the front white trim. And if you paint all four sides of the trim white, you will better be able to tell when your blue is blue enough.

      I also agree that the triangle at the open end should be painted the house color, not white (the trim part should stay white, of course). You want the two sides of your porch to look the same, and the wall color is what it should be. Symmetry is good. And soothing. It will look right.

      About your carport: Are you going to build a flat roof inside it to allow you to have storage? Some sort of put down attic stair (lockable, some how) would be great to have, I think.

      Lastly, before you pay the builder his last payment, set up a step ladder and a garden hose and spray water on all the new sections of the roof to see how and where they drain. I would strongly suggest gutters, also, to preserve your siding and landscaping.

      And please know that your blog and house projects are so absorbing, inspiring and entertaining! I have learned so much from you and your approach, so many thanks for bringing all of us along for the ride.

      1. I just realized! If you put tongue and groove wood on your carport roof, you can paint it Haint blue, too!

  9. I had the same problem with my front porch {not an exact match, but close enough}. I found that having the trim be one solid piece instead of siding made the difference, just like you mentioned. If there’s a way to photoshop that before trying it, I think you’d like it.

  10. I think an extra column would make the porch too boxed in. I do think a solid piece of wood, painted white, would be a nice fix to the “Bermuda Triangle” issue. 😊. And, I’m curious along with Poohla about the drainage, although you may have that planned for with gutters, etc when completed. Love the carport area, but you are going to love it more for outdoor entertaining and personal enjoyment. 🌸

    1. That remains to be seen. My mom doesn’t think I’ll actually park my cars under the carport. She thinks it’ll end up being a covered patio/outdoor workshop for me. I’m determined to prove her wrong, so I’ll at least park one car under there…during the night and in bad weather. 😀 😀

      1. Multi- use of anything is a great idea, lol. You always make everything look great, so it will be ok. Wish I had the youth and flexibility, not to mention talent, to try some of your great artwork and projects. I’m enjoying remodeling vicariously through you 😊

        1. I don’t want or need a garage, and I don’t want the view out of the French doors at the back of the studio to be the inside of a garage.

      2. No one would fault you for setting up your saws to do cabinets and woodwork out there. come winter, park you cars there (because it’s too cold and wet for your tools!).

  11. Yes the carport is awesome!! Don’t beat yourself up. There is nothing more difficult than painting a ceiling! Your right on with the porch and how to paint all those areas. Although I think your overthinking the end portion. Once your done with it you most likely won’t think about it much. ( I do this too😉) Get it done. Move on with your list. Then if it bothers you revisit those triangle portions and the column.

    1. I agree with Tracy. Don’t overthink that end of the porch. And it really doesn’t need another column – that will make the porch too narrow at that end and you might end up doing something different with that front garden area in front of your breakfast room. Anyway, everything is looking so much better on the outside. You must be happy with how it is all progressing.

    2. I have to agree with these girls. what you have done looks SO nice, SO SO nice!!! I like the photo of the inside of the porch as it is (I even like the barely there blue, I could tell the difference) and I like the way that the outside of the porch roof is all white butting up the the side of the house. I wouldn’t change a thing and think it will look great and you won’t even think about it once it’s all done. There is no reason to paint that little triangle to match the rest of the siding even if it’s matched on the inside of the porch. Drawing your eye to that little triangle is just silly in my opinion. Great job though, she’s beautiful!!

  12. Kristi, the car “park” (I like that better than Portia beautiful. More than I imagined. I agree you need to make it more an outdoor living area. When you need to work (you mentioned sawing and carpentry and other project jobs) you can just cover everything with furniture plastic covers. You’ll need them when it rains anyway.
    As to the front, I agree with the idea of putting up one piece to cover inside and outer side of soffits. Add a three sided column with topper and bottom to match existing columns. In this case I think symmetry will pull the whole look together. And in my opinion, everything needs a “bit” of blue. I am so impressed with what you have done. I’ve been living in a fixer upper for 3 years. But my daughter & sil are the worker bees.

  13. My porch has a half column against the house on both ends and I can’t imagine it any other way. My columns are turned instead of straight, though, so that might make a difference. I love your carport! With the porch, that will give you a shaded place to sit outside both morning and afternoon.

  14. Oh, and please, please get all that stuff of the roots of your beautiful tree. I know they look big and tough but all that stuff can do some damage!

  15. Carport does not do it justice! I’m seeing comfy patio furniture, outdoor dining area…looks great!

  16. The carport /outdoor covered area looks amazing already. The new roof line is what is really making it look like it belongs to your house and not an add on / after thought. This is going to be such a great multi-purpose useful area.
    I think with the front porch ceiling, all the trim should be white. On the side triangle part, I think the triangle should be the same color as the new siding, as it’s the gable on the end, with white trim. I like your idea of a 3 sided column there to balance out the porch and the side of the house.

    1. Completely agree. I think if the corner trim on the house itself was white, this would have been an easy decision to have all the trim white and the triangle siding gray. But, with the corner trim gray, it isn’t balanced. I think putting ana additional column is a nice architectural feature and solves the problem that you’re seeing.

  17. Loving the new carport… er… whatever we’re calling it! LOL

    It’s awesome to have that much covered space that can serve multiple functions. The first thing I thought when I saw it today was that you could put tables under it if you ever wanted to have a family and friends over for a cookout or whatever. Even better since it has the ramp and would be an outside space easily accessible to your husband.

    That you can do outside work without worrying about it being rained on while it dries, etc. and you have covered parking to boot just makes it a fab space.

    I have to admit that I wasn’t especially excited about this project but now that I see it, I can totally understand why you wanted to have it built. Wow!


    1. PS Agree with one of the other commenters who suggested that maybe a different siding in that little triangle on the front porch would help. Either a flat panel or maybe the same material as the roof of the porch done vertically? Then it wouldn’t look off to paint it differently than the rest of the siding?


  18. Porte-cochère – It’s considered more of a pass through, but that doesn’t mean you can use the word to feel fancier!

  19. Undecided on the paint color problem but I definitely think adding the column is a great idea. It would balance out the porch quite well.

  20. I’d recommend 3 different sized large pots in various shades of coral (to coordinate with your front door) filled with flowing greens (like ferns or something airy) to the right of the windows. Skip adding another column, and forget about the triangle of gray or white up above. That way you’d have a pop of color, and it wouldn’t look like you’d jump off the porch on the side.

  21. Kristi,
    I’d paint the porch gable end siding gray and all the trim inside the porch roof white. Might look choppy if some of the trim abutting the blue ceiling is gray and some is white.

  22. As long as you have appropriate parking for clear weather, the carport/carpark/patio can absolutely do double/triple duty. Park the cars there. Move them for other uses. Enjoy it to the max. No need to limit yourself.

  23. I did a quick Google search of front porch columns and didn’t find any next to the house unless the railing went up to the house on that shorter side. Did you plan to put railing all along all three sides? As for paint, I would agree with another post, leave all the siding gray and paint all the wood white except that pretty blue ceiling! I love watching the transformation and appreciate all the hard work you are doing, not only on the house but sharing all of it with all of us as well.

  24. Oh Kristi, I feel your pain with the ceiling. Our kitchen, dining room and living room are all in one room with a tongue and groove wooden cathedral ceiling that has a center beam and 4 additional side beams. The previous owner had white washed all of it and because of all the sunlight, it was really yellow. We hired a painter to paint it and we wanted to stain the beams. Here we are 9 weeks and 2 painters plus myself later with the ceiling finally caulked, sanded, primed and painted, but the beams haven’t been touched. I never dreamt it would take so many tubes of caulk or so much time to hide all the imperfections that the white paint highlighted. Good luck with your paint choices…it will be beautiful!

    1. Wow. We have whitewashed tongue and groove pine ceilings and when we renovated I really, REALLY wanted them painted white to help update the space but my contractor warned me that it would take a lotofwork (aka expense). Sounds like he was right.

  25. Wow, that was a mouthful! Maybe overthinking just a bit??? Just paint all the siding sections the same color and all the trim pieces the same color. Done!

  26. Yes to all that you thought of at the end. I’m calling it option three. I think adding another column will make the porch look more complete.

  27. Good work! how are you going to fill the elevation difference for getting into the carport? is the contractor going to add gravel to help?

    For painting “the triangle” (and just doing paint) I’d suggest the siding and vertical trim be the house color(like your corners), the horizontal and diagonal do the trim color to tie in the roof and porch together.

    Somehow Initially I would’ve treated the trim for the porch ceiling as trim and painted it all white (to frame the ceiling) or the blue (to hide it), but you can get away with your your idea. I think that detail is more a personal decision, not many should criticize or observe too closely in the end, go with what makes you happy.

  28. Cut a cardboard triangle to size for that porch corner. Then slap some paint on it and tack it up and see how you like it. If it doesn’t look good try another color combination.

  29. Disclaimer: I haven’t read the comments.
    I would paint all of the trim on the underside of the porch white.
    I would do the thing with the flat pieces on the side of the porch and paint it white.
    I would add the faux column and paint it white.

    And I love how that “it’s too pretty to be called a carport” structure is looking!! It’s like it was meant to be!

  30. How about “Portico,” a structure consisting of a roof supported by columns at regular intervals, typically attached as a porch to a building.

  31. Kristi, I’m amazed you can do all that work in 100 degree temps. I bow to you. It was 91 degrees here today and I stayed inside.
    I saw the porch ceiling on IG and it definitely looked bluer there than here on the blog. However, I do think a second coat with a wee touch more blue will be just what you want. My only comment about the area in question… when you stand at the street do you notice the lap of the triangle as much as you do close up? I seriously think you should just leave it white. The white brings unity and I think painting such a small triangle will just attract needless attention to it.

  32. The carport is awesome and I agree with you that it’s too nice to call a carport. The portico idea sounds go to me too. Now to the porch. I like your idea of adding a column and making the triangle a solid piece. I’d them paint it white. We remodeled the outside of our house last year and I came to the conclusion that when you are dealing with updating an old house that some little things you just have to overlook or you will make yourself crazy. And that’s advice from one perfectionist to another. 😜

  33. I’d say what you are having built on the back of your house is a porte cochere, rather than a carport. Sounds fancier, too!

  34. I’d pave up to that portico and park beside it. I use my covered porch EVERYDAY to eat outside, read, work on the computer, play music, etc. You’ve added a gorgeous outdoor room and I know you were planning to park there…. but then your view out your double doors will be your car. I think you’ll love it however you decide to use it.

  35. I would replace the siding and make it flat. Another column would through the balance of and be a lot more work and expense.

    Love the blog. Should find out this week if we get our 3rd fixer upper.

    Got to love a project!