Need colour suggestions for exterior
Rebecca Dawn
July 18, 2013
Hello - I just joined this site, and it looks pretty neat!

We have a 1940s small red brick house, and we recently just got new windows and a new storm door installed. The windows and door are white, but the fascia and soffit is a creamy/beige colour.

We will be getting landscaping done in September, and before then I would like to do the following:

- Paint the front door
- Paint, remove, replace or do something different with the shutters
- Resurface or paint the front steps and railing

I am looking for suggestions for colour, as I would love our home to look quaint and cottagy. I love bright colours (was thinking teal for the front door), but I am hesitant to introduce too many colours to the palette.

Any suggestions would be great! I am new to this home-ownership and decorating, so I'd love to see what other great minds come up with.

I have included a couple photos - some with the old windows/door, and one with the new windows, just installed yesterday!

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The shutters are too small. Remove them and see what you think about no shutters. If the windows look too bare for your taste, add the correct size. If you can afford to resurface, brick on the porch and stairs would be nice along with painted wood railings. I'd remove the evergreens near the railing to open up the entrance as well as the small jungle along the left side of the driveway. A large bed of hostas that surrounds the tree and flows toward the driveway would soften the yard. Also trim up the tree in the yard so there are no low-hanging branches. The small shutters and messy yard are what I see first, not the color.
3 Likes    Bookmark   July 18, 2013 at 10:01AM
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You may not have the budget now, but down the road I'd look to modifying the entire facade of the house to replicate the two gables shown in this photo.

2 Likes    Bookmark   July 18, 2013 at 10:19AM
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anne dee
are you brave? You said you like bright colors. Are you ready to paint the brick?

PS remove the shutters. they don't do anything for the house.
1 Like    Bookmark   July 18, 2013 at 10:30AM
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Congratulations! You're already making important improvements - the door and window are a good start. The shutters can go away now.

The porch and steps will benefit from a good scraping. If you determine that the concrete is in good shape, prep them (read up on TSP) and use concrete paint, maybe a brick color for now. And use some glossy black Rustoleum on the railings.

When you get around to doing something about that gable (I wonder why they angled the siding?), consider shakes and a cute vent or little window up there.

For paint colors that go with brick and white: dark gray, blue-gray, creamy gold, soft green.

For the punches of color that you want, you could accent your porch or flower beds with a couple of very big, bright pots in a complimentary color to your trim (examples: green trim with orange pots, blue-gray trim with lime green pots). Color trends come and go, so it's easier to change out accessories than to repaint.

Have fun!
1 Like    Bookmark   Thanked by Rebecca Dawn    July 18, 2013 at 11:29AM
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Some color ideas:
1 Like    Bookmark   July 18, 2013 at 11:44AM
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It sounds like after buying a home you want some budget friendly quick changes to take you into the winter and next year.

I agree with removing the shrubs. They add nothing except an old, outdated look. Sounds like you will have the landscapers take care of that.

It appears from the portion of the roof that is visible along the edge that it is black. Because so little of it is visible, I wouldn't worry about matching it.

I agree, remove the shutters. I can't tell what the lower window sill of the front window is made of, hopefully it's something that you can attach a custom sized window flower box to. That really says "cottage". I personally like a blue-gray trim with red bricks. I think green sinks in too much with other greenery around it. Once the shrubs are removed, you could either replace the metal porch surround/handrails with wood, or paint it to match the trim.

Your porch is small. If you like to sit on a porch (we do), I'd recommend maybe having the landscapers make you a small patio under the front window with pavers or slate. You'd have to move the flowers there, but it would give you somewhere to sit in the front of the house, create some interest, and also look "cottagey". You could put a small garden around the paved/slate patio. It should be no deeper than the front porch, just a nice "sitting area" with maybe a swing or glider, or even wood & metal bench.

Cute house. Congrats!
2 Likes    Bookmark   Thanked by Rebecca Dawn    July 18, 2013 at 11:48AM
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Something to ask your landscapers about: Is that a locust tree in the front? Is it structurally sound? Is it sending up babies next to the house? Locusts can be messy - they have flowers, beans and often loose their leaves in bracts that turn slippery and create slime on porches and decks. Although we love trees, we were very happy when our neighbor cut hers down.
    Bookmark   July 18, 2013 at 11:54AM
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I always suggest shutters must fit! That means that whether you open and close them or not, shutters must look as if they can be closed and cover all the glass. If you can’t do that without having shutters 3’ wide on either side it means your window should not have a shutter. It is like a man wearing pants that are too short. Taking it a step further, I, personally, would not install a shutter which was not authentic.

My suggestion for your front door is that you have grids in the storm which conflict with the windows in the front door. I would get a new front door, solid. Paint it the same color as the storm. Or paint a new door the color of your choice, but also paint the storm the same color. Otherwise you are going to have a lot of lines intersecting.
1 Like    Bookmark   July 18, 2013 at 11:56AM
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Rebecca Dawn
Wow! Thanks for all the comments – this is a very helpful site; glad I found it. A few thoughts/comments in response:

-I will remove the shutters; I have a couple wall-mount hanging baskets in painted wrought iron that I might hold up on either side of the window to see how those look if the wall looks too plain
-The shrubs are coming out – small boxwood cones going in on either side of the steps when landscaper comes in September; all the landscaping is being redone in September – the jungle will be gone! Hurrah!
-I love the façade and painted brick ideas, but we have a limited budget right now, so we want to make the place look great without many expensive changes
-Will scrape the porch, and probably paint with concrete paint – I’m not sold on the brick colour though – are there other colours that would complement the house maybe?
-The new storm door (first photo) is a large pane of glass so that the original door shows – I would like to paint the door to add some colour
-Colourwise, the top fascia is beige-ish, and the roof is a brown tone – though I love blue-gray, I think it wouldn’t match because we don’t have white siding? Any other suggestions for colours?

Thanks again! This is great help,
    Bookmark   July 18, 2013 at 12:56PM
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