Midcentury Carport Becomes Hip Lounge Space

With clever architectural tricks, dramatic color and smart lighting, designer Brian Patrick Flynn turned his Atlanta carport into a flexible, stylish hangout space that will make you rethink using your carport just for parking cars.

June 02, 2020

Photo By: Flynnside Out

Photo By: Flynnside Out

Photo By: Flynnside Out

Photo By: Flynnside Out

Photo By: Flynnside Out

Photo By: Flynnside Out

Photo By: Flynnside Out

Photo By: Flynnside Out

Photo By: Flynnside Out

Photo By: Flynnside Out

Photo By: Flynnside Out

Photo By: Flynnside Out

Photo By: Flynnside Out

Photo By: Flynnside Out

Photo By: Flynnside Out

Photo By: Flynnside Out

Photo By: Flynnside Out

Photo By: Flynnside Out

Carport Before

Prior to a major remodel of the entire property inside and out, the carport lacked a solid lighting plan. The untreated concrete floor was stained from years of automotive oil and overall grime from exposure to the elements. Privacy from the house next door was also an issue since the walls along the exterior were wide open.

After: Multipurpose Carport

A fresh coat of black paint, architectural sconces, a privacy screen and a larger globe pendant transform the lackluster carport into something that makes much more of a statement. The carport is used for three main purposes: parking day-to-day, set up with stackable chairs for brief hangouts with friends and furnished with a lightweight outdoor sectional for formal, comfy gatherings.

Ditch the Door

When the house was purchased, the carport had a door to a small closet right smack in the middle of its focal wall. In order to create a showstopping feature wall with lighting elements, Brian relocated the door to the back of the property and covered its original opening in black paneling.

Walled Over

In its new state, the door is gone, allowing the entire back wall of the carport to showcase a trio of Brian's capsule sconces.

Pressure-Treated Planks

To add privacy from the house next door, modern partitions made of pressure-treated 1-inch by 3-inch wood planks were installed with a 3/4-inch gap between each plank.

Shade Effect

The 3/4-inch gap between each pressure-treated plank of the partition wall creates a shade effect on the adjacent walls.

Diffused Soft Lighting

Carports offer an opportunity to get creative with lighting. Instead of sticking with basic or contractor-grade fixtures, add some personality with choices that make a statement. Here, a 30-inch globe made of acrylic offers soft, diffused lighting to the space after dark.

Durable Lighting

One thing to consider when you're adding decorative lighting to a carport is how durable it will be against the elements and how easy it will be for changing bulbs. This fixture is safe and stylish. It's made from acrylic yet looks identical to milk glass. To change the bulb, a finial at the bottom is loosened and then the brass band conceals the seam where the top and bottom domes meet. The bottom half-dome is removable for access to the bulbs.

Capsule Sconces

Capsule shapes were very popular in the 1960s when Brian's house was originally built. To honor the era, he designed these sconces himself; they're made of matte black metal with satin brass accents and milk glass globes.

Black Ceiling

To add interest to what was a basic, lackluster ceiling, Brian installed sanded sheets of 1/4-inch plywood and then framed out with 1-inch trim. To add drama, it was sprayed the same shade of black as the brick walls and partition.

Garage Floor Paint

In its original state, the concrete floor was a basic shade of gray. To take it up a notch, style-wise, Brian decided to paint it an unexpected shade of teal.

Prime, Paint and Seal

To transform the floor, Brian started by pressure washing the surface, then primed and painted two coats of garage floor paint, and then sealed. For proper curing, he stayed off the floor for a full 48 hours.

Mod Chairs

Since the main use of the carport is for parking two vehicles side by side, it's important for the chairs to be lightweight and stackable. These string chairs have a 1960s vibe and also easily stack up in the corner of the garage for quick and safe storage.

Game Space

An indoor-outdoor coffee table made of a lightweight concrete top and teak legs offers plenty of space for Brian and friends to hang out and enjoy the space.

Carport Transformed for Formal Gatherings

On special occasions like birthdays or holidays, the carport is set up for more formal social gatherings. This lightweight sectional is indoor-outdoor and easy to store. The cushions are stacked and tucked inside a closet in the basement when not in use.

Kid and Pet Friendly

While grownups hang out on the carport, kids and pets can stay contained on the adjacent deck thanks to a gate that also serves as an integrated divider wall.

Steel Doors

For an unexpected industrial touch, Brian had custom steel and glass doors fabricated to create a modern element to transition to and from the carport.

Indoor-Outdoor Living

This entire house is ideal for entertaining, mostly due to the flow from indoors to outdoors, including this transition from the indoor dining space to the outdoor hangout space in the carport.

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