The entrance to any home is the first and best opportunity to set the mood and introduce your guests to your home's overall style. With a Victorian house, the first view of your home is even more important. So, how can you create the perfect Victorian entrance? Here are a few tips to get your creative juices flowing.

The Philosophy. Start by understanding what Victorians wanted from their porches and how they changed people's use of the home. Boxy front entrances of earlier homes gave way to open and useful front porches that invited people to spend more time outside getting fresh air rather than staying in and breathing stagnant air. The airiness of a good porch also allowed the sun to filter into the home's windows during winter while blocking the intense summer heat. The porch should be a way to invite guests both inside and outside and provide a private nook for the family to gather on comfortable evenings.

Keep it Organized. The front entryway for your home should have a clear plan before you start building. Depending on the particular style of the home, you may choose to use lots of symmetry or repeat some architectural detail from the rest of the house (such as a round turret shape or particular designs on the entry door). If the porch will be large and wrap around the home, use an overarching design element like a unified railing with a repeated style that encompasses the whole thing.

Make it Detailed. Even though you want the Victorian porch to be well-planned and have an overall symmetry, that doesn't mean that it should be barren or minimalist. Victorian homes, as their architecture usually makes clear, were all about the details. Add fun and charming decorative elements to your porch to give it character. These details often include things like wood trim, ornate railings, upper cornices, moldings, and a complex and heavy front entry door. Wooden scroll work or "gingerbread" trim is an easy way to add beauty to even the most basic of porches.

Lead Inside. Mesh the front porch's style with the entryway using the front door and some complementary furnishings. A dark, carved wood entry door with glass details can be used to create a bridge between a few pieces of porch furniture and the foyer's staircase railings in the same rich wood color. Another way to make the porch feel like part of the home is to use a similar color palette as will be used in the front entry rooms.

By applying these tips when designing your porch, entry door, and foyer, you can create a home that's beautiful both inside and out.

For more information, see companies like Southland Exteriors LLC.