Five Porches We Love

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Find inspiration in the porches of our neighbors

By Elizabeth Efird | Photography by Beth Mann

The porch at the Goldberg home features a carefully curated set of green furniture

Ashlyn Goldberg holds one of her sons on the family's screened in porch

Timelessly Thrifty

New traditionalist Ashlyn Goldberg carefully collected all of her porch furniture from different thrift and consignment shops. Ashlyn, her husband Rafi, and their two sons, Julian and Solomon, live in a new home in South Durham decorated with timeless antiques and restored family heirlooms. “This home is a source of joy for us,” said Ashlyn. “If it’s not handed down, almost everything is thrifted.” Every piece in the house is meaningful and has been carefully curated, but at the end of the day, it’s a house for the Goldberg family to call their happy place.


The Johnson family's outdoor seated area is surrounded by huge oak trees
The Johnson family enjoys refreshments on their back porch

Restored & Renewed

Brad and Dani Johnson had their eye on a Mount Gilead Church Road home for years before they could finally call it their own. The couple, along with their two daughters, Virginia and Kimberly, moved into the restored farmhouse in 2017. Their seven-acre property, which was once a 250-acre farm, was built in the 1850s. Massive oak trees surround the back porch and are scattered throughout the property, with two listed as Grand Trees of Chatham. The white farmhouse, locally known as Ward’s Hollow, is a work in progress as the Johnson family continues the restoration process, making additions and renovations to transform it into the perfect family home.


Hanan Kovens has a drink on his front porch

Carefully Curated

When a client of developer Hanan Kovens decided against using the towering, 9-foot glass-paneled door that now resides at the front of his home, Hanan had an idea.  “I have a place for it,” he said, envisioning it at the front of his not-yet-built home on Milton Avenue. Like the door, many items in and outside of his home were carefully cultivated and set aside long before he moved into the house in June 2018. As a child, Hanan enjoyed spending his time helping on his father’s job sites as well as landscaping. These passions brought him back to Chapel Hill in 2009 as a developer. “I wanted it to be Chapel Hill-style, but with a contemporary feel,” Hanan said. “I love living here.”


Craven Miller and John Hykes sit on their front steps with daughter Evelyn

Renovated & Refined

Interior designer Craven Miller and landscape architect John Hykes purchased their Georgian Revival home on University Drive in 2017. The two live with their daughter Evelyn in the historic Rockwood neighborhood. The home’s striking entrance and symmetrical windows are reminiscent of neoclassical architecture. The two have enjoyed their ongoing project of perfecting and renovating the home together, and they love spending time in its outdoor spaces.


Max and Krystal Kast sit on the front porch of their Briar Chapel Home
The stairway leading to the Kast home features bright and colorful flowers

Green Thumb

Master Sommelier Max Kast and photographer Krystal Kast sit on their front porch in Briar Chapel. The Kasts moved to Chatham in 2005, so that Max could work at Fearrington Village, and then to Briar Chapel in 2017. Max’s childhood interest in food and flavors led him to The Fearrington House Restaurant, where he was the Beverage Director for nine years. Krystal owns Chapel Hill-based Krystal Kast Photography, where she specializes in portraits, weddings and events. When they aren’t working, they enjoy spending time on their plant-filled porch.

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