Choosing Exterior Paint Colors
Now that spring is officially here, homeowners are calling me for help choosing their exterior paint colors. Many factors go into narrowing down colors that work. When choosing exterior paint colors, factoring in the overall look, the individual elements, and the neighboring houses enables me to empower homeowners to choose the right colors the first time.
Consider the Overall Look
In my area, so many homes are brick with siding on the upper level or only on the sides and back. Some also have stone and brick along with siding. When paint colors don’t relate to the brick or stone, or worse yet, when the brick and stone don’t relate to each other or look too busy, the house looks like there are two different houses stuck together. If you have a new build, all the materials and colors must be chosen at the same time to create a look that is styled. For a partial renovation or a new coat of paint, the existing elements must be considered.
The upper house and lower house are two different styles. The siding color and window trim on the upper windows does not relate to the brick. (Photo by homewithkeki)
Assess the Individual Elements
To help homeowners narrow down colors from the thousands of choices available, I begin with the shingles, brick, stone, pavers, landscaping, and neighboring homes. Considering the hues in the architectural materials is the first step in creating a cohesive color scheme. Just as with interiors, creating harmony and flow around the house as well as in the neighborhood is important.
The siding does not relate to the brick or the stone, and the stone and brick do not relate. In addition, the green is too bright for the brick. (Photo by ashiyasediet.info)
Remember the Neighboring Houses
When considering the look of their exteriors, most homeowners want a distinct look without their home screaming flashy or garish. Builders usually vary the types and colors of brick and other elements on houses in a subdivision. Thus, a look that is different enough from the house next door or across the street can be accomplished by looking at the unique hues in a home’s shingles, brick, stone, and landscaping. By creating a color scheme with coordinating hues, homeowners can have a look that is unique yet harmonizes with the neighborhood.
Choosing Exterior Paint Colors that Make Sense
When I assess the exterior of a home, I make note of all the colors and hues in the brick, stone, and shingles as well as any pavers. I also consider the color of the window and door frames. A white window limits the trim color you can use around the windows and most likely the majority of your trim. Note that a house with brick looks best with windows and a trim color that is not stark white. Once I establish the trim color options, I then pull a color from the brick or stone for the siding that coordinates and pulls together all the fixed elements. In the past some homeowners painted the trim and siding the same color. For a fresh, updated look choose a trim color that contrasts with the siding color. In addition, a front door color can announce the entrance and give your home a unique look. Beware of choosing bright, saturated colors with a more muted color scheme, unless you’re consulting with a designer trained in color. Your door will not only pop, it will look like it belongs on a different house.
A yellow door that is too saturated and bright for the brick. (Photo by Edward Jones, Clarksville)
A door that coordinates with the hue families of the architectural elements.
If you’re interested in reading about other options for choosing color with brick, read this article. For help choosing your exterior colors and color schemes, contact me for help choosing the right colors the first time!
Photo by Cheryl Adams
If you’ve decided to remodel or paint your home before the holidays, plan paint colors NOW! Whether for the interior or the exterior, now is the time to start thinking about your color scheme and paint colors. Painters, builders, and color consultants need time to work you into their schedules and order supplies before the work starts.
For painting, allow a couple days to test paint colors under different lighting conditions. Buying small samples and painting two coats on a large piece of foam core board allows you to move the board around to each side of the house or room at different times of the day and in sunny and cloudy conditions. Seeing the paint on a larger scale and in the lighting in and around your home will help you choose the right color the first time. Please do not make the mistake of choosing a paint color at the paint store! For exteriors, assess the undertones of the whole house, the roof, any stone or pavers, the landscaping, decks, and neighboring houses. For interiors, look at undertones in all fixed finishes such as stone, countertops, tile, fireplaces, fixtures, and flooring. All these need to be considered before you choose a paint color.
When doing a total remodel or replacing cabinets, countertops, tile, and flooring, plan paint colors in conjunction with these elements. The total time to design, schedule contractors, order supplies, and execute the work can take between four to six weeks for a kitchen or four to eight months for a whole house renovation. Check with your builder for more exact times.
Keeping these starting points in mind will help you complete your project well before the holidays and with much less stress. If you need help choosing your paint colors or color scheme for interiors or exteriors, contact me. I will help reduce your stress by using my Certified Six-Step Color Read Process to help you choose the right colors the first time!
Spring is finally here in Michigan! Now is a good time to add a fresh look to your front door with a splash of paint to welcome you home. How to pick a paint color for your front door? My client knew she wanted a turquoise color, but looking at all the paint swatches available, she wasn’t sure which to choose.
During my on-site consultation at her Lake Orion home, I assessed the color of her stone, siding, shingles, and landscaping to determine the undertones. Because her siding had orange undertones, we decided turquoise would be the perfect color to complement her exterior, especially because she already knew she liked it. We then looked at various large samples I brought to see how they looked in the lighting available. Her house faced North, so I knew we’d need a version of turquoise that would brighten the entry, avoiding the tones with more gray. Also, I made sure the color of the door looked good with the foyer walls inside her house, since the door would be open at times. A triad color scheme that added lime green from the accessories on her porch completed the design plan.
Following the rules of design and color, Color Confident Home will help you choose the perfect paint color for your front door. Call me at 248-509-4720.