Porch 2013

Ah, the Porch

Photo by Rob Karosis /Whitten Architects

A perfect Maine porch starts with the view, but that’s not the only consideration. “In Maine, if you have a porch you’d like to be able to use it, but there are times of the year when you have blackflies, mosquitoes, and no-see-ums,” says Portland architect Rob Whitten. The ideal Maine porch, then, would have both screened and unscreened spaces, like this one, Snowman Farm in Weld. The land on which this house sits has been in the homeowners’ family for generations, and they had had a dwelling on a boggy — and buggy — plot nearby. “They knew the site, and a screened porch was a big part of their interest,” Whitten says. “They can really enjoy themselves out there.”

A porch provides a gentle transition between inside and outside spaces. It can even expand indoor living space: Summertime at Snowman Farm finds the French doors that separate living room from screened porch thrown wide open. Porches are no less appreciated during the Maine winter, when they provide a convenient and dry platform for firewood.

But if it’s perfection you’re after — and we are! — a porch must have a breathtaking view. Maine is full of such porch-worthy landscapes, but it’s hard to beat the one stretching out before Snowman Farm: Webb Lake and Mount Blue.