How to Make a Custom Trellis Porch Rail
Add instant curb appeal with a custom trellis porch rail. Follow these steps to upgrade your front porch.
Instead of a traditional porch rail, this modern design instantly adds to your home's architectural style. The open square design allows for little faces to peek out but also provides privacy. Bonus: The design creates lovely shadows on sunny afternoons and could serve as a trellis. To amp up your curb appeal in just one weekend, check out our instructions for this DIY porch rail below.
Note: This project should be modified per the measurements of your porch. The distance between our porch beams is 96 inches.
What You Need
- 4x8-foot marine-grade plywood sheets (we used three 3/4-inch-thick sheets, but this will vary by size of porch)
- Paper grocery bag
- 2x4 boards, 96 inches long
- Drill with drill bit
Step 1: Make Stencil
Download the plan and draw the trellis pattern on the paper grocery bag. Use a ruler and pencil to get straight lines. Measurements for the stencil are found in the illustration above, as well as in the project download.
Cut out L shapes and middle square shape.
Step 2: Trace and Cut Stencil
Line up the stencil 2 inches from the shorter side of the plywood board and 1 inch from the top. Using a pencil, lightly trace the stencil cutouts. Continue tracing the stencil until entire board is covered.
Use a jigsaw to cut out the L-shape corners and inner square of the pattern. Sand any rough edges.
Step 3: Prep Top and Bottom Rails
Use a router to notch a 1-inch strip through the 2x4s to create rails.
Use drill and screws to attach the rails to the top and bottom of the trellis-cut plywood.
Step 4: Prime and Paint
Prime and paint rails and trellis panels using desired color and a paintbrush. Use an exterior-grade paint and apply one or two coats for best results. Let dry between coats.
Step 5: Attach Board
Use the drill and screws to attach the panels to vertical porch beams. This will require several people to help hold and secure the board. Use a level to make sure board is even before securing panels. Position the board 4 inches above the porch surface.
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