When we bought the home we loved that it had a front porch but felt the plain large gable overpowered the front facade and was a little disproportionate. We originally thought we’d tear the gable down and put a shed roof across the whole house but Steven didn’t really want to tear it down. So online we went searching for ideas.
We decided to keep the gable, add a smaller gable facade inside the large one, and add a shed roof to the left side creating the full front porch we originally wanted.
The first step was moving the mature azaleas and camellias. They were large and beautiful and we tried everything to save them. We were successful with some, not successful with others. The original porch was block and cement slab and I’m sorry to say I don’t have pictures of Steven jack hammering out the slab and tearing down the block. He worked for days getting all that cement and block tore out and hauled off.
Because we were keeping the gable but not the foundation, Steven had to support the gable. He did this with 2″x10″ boards. They were leaning out (on purpose) and numerous people commented on how they drove by everyday expecting the gable to be on the ground because it just didn’t look stable. I have to admit, the thought crossed my mind but Steven was confident in the structural stability of his plan.
Once the gable was propped up and the original porch floor removed, it was time to dig the footers for the new porch. This is when I got really concerned. From the picture you can see he had the mini excavator under the gable digging. In my head, one wrong turn of that thing and he knocks out the 2×10’s bringing the gable down on top of him! Luckily that didn’t happen. The footers got dug and we were ready for the cement truck. Typically I’m the more optimistic one but I truly had my doubts when Steven said he and I could handle the cement and get the footers poured. I was so thankful our son Jacob and his friend Sean happened to be home from college that weekend. I quickly recruited them. I think in the end, Steven was glad I did.
It’s the day the cement truck is coming and we’re ready. Steven selected the cement company based on the height of their truck knowing getting it under our live oak tree would be an issue. He only had inches to spare. We got the footers poured and the rest of the job went fairly smoothly. Over the next couple months, Steven got the porch built.
All the finishing trim work took some time but were pleased with the way it turned out. The ceiling is a wood V-groove matching the original ceiling which we kept under the gable. Our architect suggested a sunburst in the small gable and shake shingles in the larger gable which we did. The sunburst angles proved to challenge our math skills making me feel like I was back in high school doing math word problems. Does any like those? Not me.
Somewhere in that timeframe, we put in a new door which I love and new windows. We’ll save that for another post.
In the end, we love our front porch and like the way it creates a more balanced facade. We’re still working our way around the house with new windows and siding and slowly getting there.