20 Porch Railing Ideas That Add Style and Privacy

Decorative Ironwork Railing

Decorative iron railings will complement the style of a grand Victorian or Spanish-style home unlike a simple style, which could fall flat. This railing incorporates the circles and pill shapes popular in early 20th century design.

Double Picket Railing

The small vertical posts in a railing design are called pickets or balusters. You can replace thicker, single pickets with delicate pairs for a more detailed look that doesn't complicate construction much. Here, the slender pickets provide nice contrast to the heavy posts holding up the roof of this porch.

Fretwork Style Railing

A pattern of vertical and horizontal pickets is a way to add detail and increase the design appeal of your porch or backyard deck. The more intricate railing designs will take a bit more planning and may require the help of a professional.

Cable Railing

A steel cable railing is a versatile style that looks good on modern or rustic homes. These railings are more expensive than some other styles, but their sleek, minimal design and lack of view obstruction may make the cost worth it.

Horizontal Plank Railing

A simple design made with simple materials makes this railing style look at home on this sweet farmhouse exterior. Three planks run horizontally into the large posts, and another plank forms the railing on top. Classic white paint matches the trim and makes the entire porch railing look fresh.

Wood and Metal Porch Railing

Mixing wood with metal is a dynamic and contemporary option for your porch railing. Wood posts and railings add warmth and richness to the space, while the black steel pickets are durable and feel modern.

Iron Porch Railing Ideas

Simple iron railings are a versatile and work with many types of architecture. An iron railing is also a smart choice if you live in a humid area, as it can stand up to moisture and changing temperatures. Here, the simple black railing provides a grounding force and some contrast amidst the greens and neutrals of this porch and the surrounding area.

Apron-Fronted Railing

Two planks form aprons at the top and bottom of this railing. This design means you see less of the pickets, and what you can see appears more delicate in comparison to the wide planks. It's a simple way to update a classic railing design.

Midcentury Porch Railing

A classic midcentury porch railing uses planks in a horizontal stripe pattern to for reinforce the geometry-heavy style of the era. Create a sense of rhythm by using different sizes of planks as your stripes. Bonus: This style of porch railing offers a lot more privacy than most other styles.

X-Shaped Railings

Railings with 'X' or criss-cross pickets nod to the X's on barn doors, but this style of railing looks good on a surprising number of home styles, from farmhouse exteriors to Craftsman style homes.

Contrasting Railing Design

This all-white railing has a natural wood top rail, which creates contrast and moves your eye around the porch. A simple square picket design matches the rest of the mostly straight lines on this screen porch.

Simple Woodworking Details

The bevel detail on this simple post-and-rail porch railing makes all the difference, adding refinement to an otherwise rustic design. There are many ways to add a bevel to wood, though you will likely need a power tool (or the help of a professional). Painting the railing white matches the siding and trim and showcases the herringbone brick floor.

Mixing Porch Finishes

This railing pairs a painted railing and balusters with unfinished wood posts. The painted railing matches the siding, while the wooden posts coordinate with the porch floor and the front door. This mixed-finish railing design is a simple way to do something different.

Lattice Porch Railing Ideas

Instead of pickets, you can use lattice between your top and bottom rails. This is potentially a more affordable option that's definitely easier to DIY. Plus, lattice offers more privacy than traditional picket designs.

Minimal Horizontal Railing

A railing with horizontal posts or cables is a contemporary style that works well on modern homes. This version, made with wood, complements the natural setting and the wooden furniture.

Choosing Railing Color

The porch railing is an opportunity to enhance your home's color scheme. This dark railing pops off the lighter colored siding and trim, and it coordinates with the dark roof color. Still, the railing is neutral enough to allow the bright blue door to be the focal point.

DIY Porch Railing Ideas

If you have structural posts installed, this porch railing design is simple enough to do yourself. Wider planks are used for the top and bottom rail, and three thin planks are placed in between to add structural support and privacy. This horizontal style railing complements the existing lines of the ranch home.

Cable Porch Railing

A steel cable railing, while modern in design, can also look at home in a more rustic setting. The almost invisible cables provide a better view of the scenery beyond the porch, and they don't compete with the other furnishings on the porch. In fact, the cables nicely mimic the horizontal lines in the siding.

Aluminum Railing

Aluminum railings are one of the most durable options, as they can withstand weather changes without rusting or warping. While they're more expensive than wood, the durability may make this choice worth it. A simple paint job will help an aluminum railing blend in with the rest of your home's exterior.

Custom Design Porch Railing

This Chippendale-inspired railing uses diagonal elements to increase visual interest. This makes the railing more of a focal point, so the rest of the furnishings are kept low to the ground and neutral in color.

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