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Perked up porch: Couple transforms space at Fargo character home

Seth and Nicole Holden recently renovated the porch on their north Fargo home. Carrie Snyder / The Forum 1 / 5
Seth and Nicole Holden enjoy a cup of coffee on their recently renovated porch. Carrie Snyder / The Forum 2 / 5
Nicole and Seth Holden recently renovated the porch on their north Fargo home. Carrie Snyder / The Forum3 / 5
A platform was built to keep the renovated porch from slanting. Carrie Snyder / The Forum4 / 5
A small station with toys and accessories for their pets sits on the porch. Carrie Snyder / The Forum5 / 5

FARGO - When Seth and Nicole Holden were house hunting, a three-season porch wasn’t on their “must-have” list.

But, a porch happened to be attached to the 1918 home the Fargo couple fell in love with in 2011.

For years, it served as a storage room while the Holdens remodeled the rest of their character home on Ninth Street North near downtown Fargo.

The slanted floor wasn’t conducive to furniture, and the old yellow paint didn’t fit with the couple’s décor style.

A few weeks ago, they decided to renovate the porch and make it an extension of their home. No strangers to DIY projects, they completely transformed the space in two weekends.

Seth, a contractor, first built a stage (platform) to level the slanted floor. Next, the couple revitalized the brown and yellow space with coats of white paint.

“I’m all about white on white because I think, especially if you can’t get expensive pieces, when you do something in monotone white, it looks rich,” Nicole says.

The furnishings in the porch are mostly white with pops of color. Nicole, who finds most of her design inspiration from Better Homes and Gardens magazine, purchased the 1930s sofa glider and rocker from a garage sale.

“I really wanted white furniture so I could change it up depending on the season. I knew I didn’t want traditional wicker patio furniture,” she says. “I really love vintage stuff, but I like mixing it with whatever else I can find.”

A green Art Deco-esque rug and plants add color to the otherwise white, sun-filled space.

“It’s just nice to sit out there and take a nap on a cool day,” Nicole says.

A storage area for the Holdens’ two Siberian huskies’ leashes and other goods was essential. Nicole’s goal while decorating the porch was to meet the needs of her family in a stylish way.

“I’m all about functionality. I try to be realistic with it,” Nicole says.

Since there’s no heat in the porch, the Holdens won’t use it in the winter. In the cold months, Nicole says it’ll be a decorative entryway.

Whether they’re enjoying the porch while drinking morning coffee or people watching with their dogs, the Holdens are happy they transformed their porch into a usable, happy space that has character.

It fits with their home philosophy.

“We found a home that was in disrepair. It was a rental home for years and it needed a lot of TLC,” Nicole says. “We liked the opportunity to make it our own.”

The couple hopes their porch renewal will inspire other people to dig into DIY projects that’ll make their old homes more beautiful.

“For us, being a younger couple and having a home that requires so much work and staying in the downtown community, I just hope we’re an inspiration to other people our age to take on these kinds of projects and revitalize old homes,” Nicole says. “That’s really important to us, restoring new life into these homes in our downtown community.”

Anna G. Larson

Anna G. Larson is a features reporter with The Forum who writes a weekly column featuring stylish people in Fargo-Moorhead. Larson graduated from North Dakota State University with a degree in journalism and joined The Forum in July 2012. She's a Fargo native who enjoys travel, food, baking, fashion, animals, coffee and all things Midwestern. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter: @msannagrace 

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