Perfect Porch Swings and Why They’re a Southern Icon

If there’s one thing that embodies life in the South, it’s the porch swing. The sole purpose of the porch swing is for relaxing and enjoying the outdoors, and whether you live in the Southeast or not, we think you need one! We’ve rounded up some of our favorite looks to inspire your outdoor space.


Green stained porch swing with white cushion at 2016 Southern Living Idea House

The covered porch at the 2016 Southern Living Idea House

The name says it all, our Sunday Porch Swing is meant for lazy days reading and drinking sweet tea. With a deep cushion, tons of back pillows, and sturdy rails, we envision lots of afternoon naps. We promise it’ll be your new favorite spot to enjoy a cup of coffee.

Just Add Wine

Of course every comfy spot needs a place for a drink, but a swing can be tricky! We definitely don’t want your wine to be out of reach, so we designed this handy tray table so your sidecar has a sidecar. Your favorite cocktail will never get left behind, and there’s even enough room for a snack.

Outdoor porch swing with other furniture pieces on covered porch

Make It a Destination

One of our favorite ways to decorate with a porch swing is to make it a part of a larger seating group. Large daybed swings don’t get a lot of air, so you don’t have to worry that your swing will bump into your coffee table. Add a loveseat, some lounge chairs, and accent table to turn your swing into a destination spot. 

Single Swing

If you’ve got a smaller space and aren’t quite ready for such a large swing, there’s no reason you can’t add a swing for one! Our Laguna swing is made of polyester rope and has a wraparound shape that cocoons you in. It’s a cozy spot that adds a quirky flair to your seating area, whether that’s inside or out on your porch.

Designer Details

We love how designer Phoebe Howard added a rope detail to the porch swing to give it that added touch. It adds charm and playfulness to an otherwise simple porch. 

Now we’re ready to grab a magazine and a glass of iced tea for some R&R! 

Browse outdoor swings and hammocks from Ballard Designs.

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Caroline McDonald

Caroline McDonald

Caroline lives for pairing together patterns, mixing furniture styles, and oogling over our newest furniture pieces. As you can imagine, her little 1920's craftsman is in a constant state of flux. Here on How to Decorate, it's her goal to help you turn your home into your own little slice of paradise.


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    August 25, 2020

    The porch swing looks great with those chairs. Did you paint the porch swing darker? If so what was the process and what type of paint and/or urethane did you use?

    • Caroline McDonald

      Caroline McDonald

      September 3, 2020

      Yes, the Southern Living team painted to porch swing green for their space. Unfortunately, we don’t have any information about the process. Sorry we couldn’t be of more help.