Keeping A Tradition Alive—Bringing Back the Breeze
Whether you sit in a lawn, Adirondack or rattan chair and drink iced tea, mint julep, scotch or coca colas, a porch is a tradition that’s been an important part of American (USA) history for over 200 years. Porches were a transition from private to public life and provided a link to nature as well as a connection to the community and time to relax with family. Whether it be a nap under starlight or partaking in gossip, a porch has always been a part of our American culture.
For many years porches were a functional need before air conditioning and electric fans were around. Screened-in sleeping porches (front or back) were constructed on houses to allow for cooler sleeping without pests. However, the prevalence and popularity grew as porches became part of an aesthetic and architectural forefront in a literary forum in the 1800’s.
Homes with porches became noted as an “American home” after Andrew Jackson Downing, a well-known landscape gardener and writer of architecture began writing about the significance of porches and how it set us (the USA) apart from European architecture. His beliefs in the dignity of our homes heavily translates today with our strong sense of need for curb appeal and gratification aesthetically as well as function as we update our homes with his theories in mind. Mr. Downing said that ‘People’s pride in their country is connected to pride in their home. If they can decorate and build their homes to symbolize the values they hope to embody, such as prosperity, education and patriotism, they will be happier people and better citizens.’—“A good house will lead to a good civilization.”
Over the course of time we have seen many transitions with modern innovations and changes in our contemporary family dynamics, and porches had become less popular. However, it seems the 21st century is realizing the necessity to come back to nature with statistics proving the mental and physical health benefits to engage with the outdoor environment. Porches and outdoor connection are a growing awareness and with that modern advances to allow enjoyment with security and ease of use this has opened up more possibilities to get back to our roots.
Now you can have it all: tradition, curb appeal and safety! It is unfortunate that we now often feel unsecure about leaving doors and windows open. Especially, with autumn approaching and the thoughts of the fall breeze traveling through our homes is more and more tempting. Additionally, our busy lives and overwhelming thoughts of time and labor play a deciding vote away from investing in that screened in porch. However, there are now solutions with the availability of quality motorized screens, security door and window screens and screen tight porch installations that can ease our minds and allow us to enjoy pest free, secure, easy to use and relaxing home outdoor connections.