From Homely to Head-Turning: Front-Yard Makeovers

First impressions mean a lot. That's why architect John Gidding takes homeowners' front yards from overgrown and underappreciated to beautiful and inviting on HGTV's Curb Appeal. Check out his most dazzling makeovers here.

By: Jennifer Brake

Crumbling Estate

Before: This house was a generous gift from the homeowners' grandparents, but it needed some updating with its boring beige color, chipped window sashes and subterranean pit that consumed the yard.

Madeover Manor

After: Mint-green paint brought life to the home and the updated portico played off the original structure to create an interesting focal point above the entryway.

Sunken Seating

After: A lowered deck replaced the cavernous pit that prevented the family from using their yard. With custom wood benches, it's been transformed into a cozy place to sit and chat with neighbors and friends.

Succulent Planters

After: Short succulents were placed all around the deck to dress up the space and contrast the tall cypress trees that frame the window.

Boring Bungalow

Before: This house featured an interesting classic Craftsman design, but it lacked personality and beauty.

Bold and Beautiful

After: Earth-toned paint and a new driveway gave the home a fresh look. Architect John Gidding also used terraced landings to break up the downward-sloping yard and provide a better way to get up to the porch.

Door on a Dime

After: Instead of buying a new door, the former glass panels were replaced with wood and painted over for a seamless new look. The wood panels also provide more insulation than the old single-pane glass.

Exposed Beams

After: Opening up the ceiling underneath the porch accentuated the classic Craftsman style of the home by exposing the rafters and making the entryway more open and spacious.

Attractive Accents

After: A sturdy wooden bench brings together the earth and copper tones incorporated into the design while purple decorative pillows match the bold color of the front door.

Dated Design

Before: This house had become the eyesore of the neighborhood with its chipped paint, crumbling railings and old-school vertical siding.

Much More Modern

After: The vertical siding was removed and a wood-slat brise-soleil was added to provide shade for the picture window and seating area below.

Lighting the Way

After: A circular sconce keeps with some of the transitional elements of the house while overlooking the modern metal address number.

Resting on Redwood

After: In addition to providing a nice sitting area, the redwood bench matched the brise-soleil, porch screen and handrail.

Abandoned Gardens

Before: These garden beds were probably once filled with beautiful flowers and had some sort of gravel or sand surrounding the flagstone path. Now they're barren and in need of some love.

Refreshed Entrance

After: The existing garden beds were revamped with flagstones surrounded by smaller white stones, which stand out against the dark stain that was added to the walkway.

Adding Color

After: Bringing a vibrant color to the front door helps the withdrawn entryway to stand out and get noticed, even from the street.

Updated Fixtures

After: The old up-light wall lamp was replaced with mounted outdoor lanterns.

Drab Dwelling

Before: The homeowner loved to garden but needed the Curb Appeal team to add some color and tame this massive yard.

Spruced Up

After: A new paint job gave this house a facelift and colorful flowers make the drive much more inviting.

Fresh Coat

After: Painting the garage door a dark green was an inexpensive way to make it pop against the gray driveway.

New Addition

After: This flower box was purchased fully assembled from a home improvement store then attached to the existing porch railing by a divided two-by-four wood plank, which consequently created a new white handrail.

Not Peachy Keen

Before: The homeowners tried to spruce up their house themselves with some peachy-pink paint leftover from their bathroom. After painting, they realized the color was all wrong, and the interior paint would soon be chipping and weathering away.

Contemporary Oasis

After: A gray-blue paint color is bright enough to get this house noticed from the curb but not overbearing like the former peach paint. A bench, tropical plants and a vegetable garden were also added.

Fenced In

After: A modern fence replaced an old wood-and-chicken-wire enclosure and replicated the style of the bench on the front porch to pull the entire space together.

Metalwork Details

After: Decorative metal pieces were added to the support beams of the porch overhang to accentuate the existing design.

Neighborhood Eyesore

Before: This house was built 20 years after the other houses in its neighborhood, so the architectural style of the home combined with the cruddy yellow-green color made it stick out like a sore thumb.

Handsome Change

After: A water table clad in stacked stone was added to the entire bottom of the house to bring out the Craftsman style of the exposed rafter tails near the roof.

Indoor-Outdoor Space

After: The new entryway extends out to a deck that almost adds another room to the house with its indoor-outdoor feel. A fire-truck-red door pops against the natural wood tones of the custom-built decorative shelves.

Perfect for Entertaining

After: Copper accessories were added to polish off the deck space, making it a perfect area to entertain or enjoy the view of the new yard.

Lackluster Looks

Before: This unmanicured home had potential, but a lack of color made it easy to pass up without a second glance.

Bright Upgrade

After: A light was added under the overhang and a bright flower box on the front railing pulls out the bold color of the front door to get this house noticed.

Beautiful Birdbath

After: A stone birdbath gives the courtyard a focal point and adds a decorative touch to the yard.

Enjoy the View

After: The homeowners didn't spend much time on the porch before the makeover, but the new bench is sure to draw them out for a look of their now lively and colorful yard.

Finishing Touches

After: Potted plants define the yard by lining the main walkway and adding pops of yellow and orange to the color scheme.

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