Beautiful Updates To Our Modern Craftsman Exterior

May 16, 2024

Updates to our exterior that have added so much character to our home!

We've made some updates to the exterior of our modern Craftsman home over the past couple of years that have made a BIG difference. It's about time I shared them with you! 

Let's start with my favorite project. I've wanted to have this done since the day we moved in, and years later I finally made it happen. 

I shared our garage doors a few years ago when I added some metal Craftsman hardware to the door trim: 
Craftman hardware on garage

This is such an easy and inexpensive garage door update! 

But I had a bigger project in mind. I first had this pergola accent done over the back doors of our last house: 
wood pergola over patio doors

I loved that look, and knew it would look SO GOOD over the garage doors in this house. 

This pergola accent is a great Craftsman style touch that adds some beautiful character to garage doors and more. 

This time, I had the contractors (they did this project at the last house too) go a little simpler with the look:
white pergola over garage

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The angled supports at the end are a bit smaller than before (I didn't want them to extend past the roofline), and I went with less of the wood 2x2s that extend from the siding. 

We absolutely LOVE how this turned out!:
Craftsman pergola over garage

Here's how the doors looked when we moved in: 
garage doors with white trim

And here's how they look now: 
white pergola over garage doors

We had these built from mostly cedar -- it will hold up better in the elements and matches the textured faux wood grain of the Hardie Plank trim around our garage doors. 

I considered leaving them unpainted, but not all of the wood matched. We don't have any other wood accents other than our door, and the white is classic!

I'm absolutely in love with this added charm: 
Craftsman garage door details

I'm considering adding a trailing, flowering plant of some kind but am hesitant to plant something that would harm the exterior of our house. 

If you have suggestions on how or if I should try that, I would love your thoughts!

For now I planted a small evergreen tree between the garages with some petunias at the base: 
cedar tree in planter garage

Just kidding...the tree is fake! I even fooled my husband. 😂

These fake cedar trees are very realistic looking and are available in a few different heights. (I used the five foot trees.) 

They come with a heavy pot that I planted directly into the planter. 

The addition of the real flowers at the bottom help to make these look even more real. 

We loved the look of the pergolas over the garage doors so much, we knew they would look great on the front of our home as well. 

To balance it out, I had that same trim added over another set of windows on the other side of the house: 
Craftsman pergola over window

I had them make this one even simpler, with only two boards across the top and smaller brackets on the sides.

Look at how much those hydrangeas have grown! This was the summer after we moved in, six years ago: 
pink purple flowers window box

Now you can't even see the window box because the bushes are so big. I'm considering moving it to another window so we can use it again. 

We LOVE the added character these give the front of our house! I have one more set of windows I'd like to do something on, but I think this same design would be too much. 

For now we're holding off on any additional trim, but I'll share if we decide to add more details. 

Our front door needed a pop of color, so I threw together a beautiful spring/summer wreath:
wood craftsman door with windows

I bought those fluffy flower stems at Old Time Pottery at least a year ago...I had forgotten about them in the garage until recently. I think this may be my favorite DIY wreath yet and it only took about ten minutes to put together! 

I reuse a grapevine wreath for easy seasonal wreaths -- it's so easy! I literally just stuff the faux flower picks into the grapevine. 

By the way, those green topiary balls in the planters are fake as well. They still look like the day I got them...highly recommend! And that tree is the same cedar tree as between the garages. (It came in a set of two.) 

I think the green accents are so classic. But don't worry, I've been adding a ton of color to this area as well!

Next up was the area in front of our front porch. Our builder planted a tree in that spot, which was fine for a few years: 
tapered Craftsman columns on porch

But it soon became obvious that it was going to get way too big. I wanted to open this area up anyway -- you couldn't see our porch (and we couldn't see anything from it) because of the tree. It felt very cramped.

So a couple years ago we had the tree moved to our backyard and had a much smaller lilac tree planted instead. 

I also had a few of the hydrangeas moved closer to the house, as they were taking over our front walkway every summer. (A couple were moved out back as well.) 

Since then I've been planting layers of plants and flowers to this area and I just love how it's all growing in: 
colorful layered garden bed

The hydrangeas aren't taking off just yet, but are doing way better this year than last. When they stop their tantrum from being moved, they will be a full and beautiful backdrop to the bright colors in this garden bed. 

These are the plants I've added so far: 

These are filling in so well, and the Dianthus and sedum will continue to spread out. The pops of color are so lovely against our dark gray house. 

Last year I also added some pathway landscape lights along our walkway up to the front door. Check out how easy it is to add DIY landscape lighting here!

I couldn't be happier with these exterior updates. I'd love your advice on adding a trailing plant over the pergolas. Wouldn't that be so charming? 

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  1. I LOVE LOVE LOVE your additions! Now to convience my husband

  2. addition to the garage doors looks great! depending on the sunlight, Clematis is a great perennial vine - some of them even have a fragrance.


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