(The Washington Post)

Melissa and Dan Hampton recently added a 13-by-16-foot screened porch to their Alexandria home. They want to create a comfortable lounge space where they can read, relax, sleep or do crossword puzzles. The Hamptons like simple designs and clean lines, and comfort is their top priority.

(Leah L. Jones/For The Washington Post)

Designer Christie Leu suggests a variety of seating to accommodate different activities but is careful to not overwhelm the small space with lots of large or heavy furniture. She brightens the porch with paint and live plants while adding curtain panels for privacy.

(Interior rendering by RichmanStudio/for The Washington Post)

Choose plants of varying heights and hang some to add visual interest in a space that doesn’t have walls for traditional art. Two swings provide plenty of room for sleeping and reading. Poufs in a natural weave material add texture and can double as extra seating or a side table for the swings. Paint the upright columns and rails a creamy white to create a unified look. Try Toque White from Sherwin-Williams. Give the space a fresh look with pale blue paint, such as Tradewind by Sherwin-Williams, on the ceiling. An orange throw and pillows are a fun and colorful accent to brighten the neutral and navy palette. Lounge chairs in a light woven material add seating without weighing down the space.

(The Washington Post; courtesy of Christie Leu)

Leu, with Christie Leu Interiors (301-335-3379, christieleuinteriors.­com), is based in Chevy Chase.

SPLURGE or save

(Ballard Designs; Hayneedle)

SPLURGE: Sunday porch swings in whitewash ($899 each, ballarddesigns.com), left. SAVE: All-weather resin porch swings ($499 each, hayneedle.com).

(Scenario Home; Wayfair)

SPLURGE: Blue glazed ceramic planter ($846, scenariohome.com), left. SAVE: Napa fiberglass pot planter in white ($79.99, wayfair.com).


Furniture: Ombre coffee table ($499, westelm.com); gray woven all-weather wicker Andalusia outdoor chairs ($199.99 each, worldmarket.com).

Accessories: Summit indoor/outdoor 8-by-10-foot area rug ($479) and radius planters in medium and large ($99-$199), both from westelm.com; outdoor natural woven poufs ($49.99 each, target.com); all-weather indoor/outdoor 52-inch ceiling fan in white ($165, build.com); orange fringe indoor/outdoor lumbar pillows ($19.99 each, worldmarket.com); Calliope jute-trim pillows in indigo ($25 each, pier1.com); Kymani throw in orange and off-white ($43.80, burkedecor.com); hanging geo planters in neutral ($24-$32, anthropologie.com); adjustable 144-inch to 240-inch patio door curtain rods in satin black ($131.49 each, overstock.com); indoor/outdoor 96-inch grommet drapery panels in natural ($69 each, potterybarn.com).

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