Time to work on the front of the house - would love some opinions :)
Amie Horvath
August 22, 2013 in Design Dilemma
Here is the front of our house. The roof is very dark, siding is colonial creme, shutters are almost navy. We keep a camper where the PT cruzer is in this picture. Here is the list of front projects:
1. Remove screen door - it wasn't installed properly by previous owner - sticks out of frame and doesn't latch well. Easy enough - patch and paint door trim white. Maybe add a screen/storm door back in the future.
- what color to paint the front door?
2. Replace lights across front of the house. These cheap brass lights have to go, plus the one was hit by the screen door multiple times and the glass is broken. Want to add some charactor and depth to the front of the house. Would like a dark color metal - hanging light.
3. Add landscaping with a couple trees (zone 5 ot be safe, but actually at the edge of zone 6 not far from Niagara Falls) at least 1 flowering tree. Know I do not want trees in the front beds. Want them futher out - lets keep the foundation good for years to come. I love purples and pinks - and lots of romantic colors - but I also like to have green during winter to put Christmas/V-DAY lights on.
4. Future project - some sort of small portico (I want to plan on having a roof over the front 8' landing/porch when designing my landscaping)

I'd like to paint the front door - color? We are open to painting the shutters also, and adding shutter dogs/hardware. Thought about faux painting the front door and garage door wood? ...I don't know. But we need to do something to the front before winter to make it our own. I would like to put pots on the front stoops - 4 total - 2 different hieghts on each side. We are not a fan of the urn molding above the front door - would like to change that at some point also.
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Amie Horvath
I think some round bushes across the front will be a good start - but what kind? - with maybe a tall bush at the edge (would give us some back yard privacy also) - there is a side walk to the driveway with a good size bed - hard to see in the pic. Maybe a Donald Wyman Crabapple - would give us some winter interest. Maybe Redbuds at the street - or should we plant trees at the street that will grow larger? No power lines to worry about. .

...below...I've also thought that something not so symetric would be nice also. I like how the colors reflect themselves on the other side, but in a different way.
0 Likes   August 22, 2013 at 12:21PM
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mefor
Bump
0 Likes   Thanked by Amie Horvath    August 22, 2013 at 12:32PM
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ang_wutz
Hi Amie - We were in your situation several years ago with a very similar looking house. We had to actually raze our yard completely since the previous owner did not care for it at all and we were starting from scratch. The best thing we ever did was go to our locally owned garden center and hired a landscape designer to create a whole property plan for us. We gave her our likes and dislikes a drawing of the property and some basic guidelines. She gave us back a fully illustrated plan with plantings, hardscape, great ideas for our front and back porch, etc. We have since executed the plan a little at a time as funds have allowed. Here are some before and afters of the front yard! We haven't yet had the funds to put up the arbor she suggested over the front steps. Maybe next year!! The plan only cost us a couple hundred dollars - worth every penny!
1 Like   Thanked by Amie Horvath    August 22, 2013 at 12:44PM
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soberg
Sounds like you already have a lot of clear ideas and are on the right track.

What about a rich butterscotch color for your front door? And leave the screen/storm off permanently so your front door can really shine.

The urn part of the molding can be removed or pared back. Your house would look great with a little gabled porch (make sure to scale correctly because we've seen some bad examples lately on Houzz). I wouldn't do anything to call attention to the garage - leave it as it is, with low contrast, and keep the focus on your front door and overall charming house.
0 Likes   Thanked by Amie Horvath    August 22, 2013 at 12:51PM
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Amie Horvath
I agree - Ang - baby steps. I need a master plan - I've been working on that in my head since January - but the plan run in 3 directions at a time. LOL First I fought the colonial facade - wanted to make it craftman - that I know would be beautiful,but a big waste of funds. Then I thought - let's embrace the colonial home fully - some formal hedges ,etc. Then I thought I can embrace the colonial home and have it feel relaxed also - but it's going to be challenging. So I'm thinking Colonial Cottage in front - but not english garden, and a rustic wine theme in back with a bluestone patio - but with lovely plantings of color with lilies and iris. I'll make it work - just need to keep talking about and work it out. We tried to go the landscaper route - but we ended up with a plan that didn't meet our needs list that we wrote out for him. We have a young family and pup - no toxic berries - he filled out our yard with trees and burms - I said I love Alleghany State Park - I love nature - I also need room for my kids to roam and a large playset - he so didn't have kids. We have put an above ground pool in, shed, large playset - fenced in the yard - black chain link - but need to do the landscaping and hard scaping still - so I need to stop my planning back there - until I figure the patio out - but that will be for another post. LOL
0 Likes   August 22, 2013 at 12:54PM
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Amie Horvath
I love these lanterns! "French Quarter" - where to find? http://betweennapsontheporch.net/wp-content/uploads/blogger/-qjJbedacs20/TucCD488YII/AAAAAAAAhCw/dGugDxGVswc/s1600/23.jpg

I wonder what the size of these are - look nice

I saw something like this for $300+ each - I'll keep looking. oouch

They are sold in antique brown also when I searched bing.
0 Likes   August 22, 2013 at 1:00PM
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Amie Horvath
soberg - I'll have to try out a butterscotch front door in photoshop - that I haven't tried yet - thank you for a new idea. I agree - let's not draw attention to the garage - thank you- I'll drop painting the garage door - you're right on that!! :)
0 Likes   August 22, 2013 at 1:05PM
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judianna20
My opinion is to paint everything that is white the cream of the house in a semi-gloss. That includes the window muntins and the garage door. Everything. So now you only have ttwo exterior colors on the exterior..cream and navy. That will make the color of your front door really a centerpiece. BM Sienna…is a red that will work well the the navy blue, but most importantly, with the cream, as you need a red that will balance with the body of the house.

This double columned portico, because I think the shape and size is balanced with the 5 windows over the four and door.

White Colonial House

A Japanese flowering cherry will do fine in your zone.
Johnsen Landscapes & Pools

And onion lamps.
Charleston 1-Light Outdoor Lantern
2 Likes   August 22, 2013 at 1:07PM
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Amie Horvath
Judi.. - the Colonial Creme siding is actually a light yellow - so painting the white trim work and such light yellow would be pretty bad - but I like where you were going if it was actually creme - creme and navy is a lovely combo.
0 Likes   August 22, 2013 at 1:10PM
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Amie Horvath
BM Sienna is similar to the Sherwin Williams "roycroft copper red" sw 2839 that may work with the light yellow "colonial creme siding" and navy - you think? Judi - you think the door color you provided would look nice with light yellow siding? http://www.sherwin-williams.com/homeowners/color/find-and-explore-colors/paint-colors-by-family/SW2839/
0 Likes   August 22, 2013 at 1:13PM
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Amie Horvath
I do like the look of double columned portico's, some cottaging roofs without columns, and the squared/hip roofs with copper/metal roofs - that will be a decision for a couple years from now - either way - there will be a small roof about the door and the urn will be gone :) I don't think we can do a flat roof with the load of the snow in western ny.
0 Likes   August 22, 2013 at 1:17PM
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Amie Horvath
Our home faces almost north - we get sun over the front beds most of the day.
0 Likes   August 22, 2013 at 1:18PM
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judianna20
Then how about a lighter version of the yellow? I don’t like the white trim because it makes the siding look grubby.
New Old Farmhouse 1
New Old Farmhouse 2
1 Like   Thanked by Amie Horvath    August 22, 2013 at 1:22PM
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judianna20
Here are the two "reds”. Don’t go too coppery.
0 Likes   August 22, 2013 at 1:28PM
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bvan1968
We replaced our light fixtures on our old home. I fell in love with some great fixtures, but had to return them. The mounting block on the house was too small for the fixture. We ended up with the same fixture -- but a nice new black instead of a rusty white fixture. Perhaps there is now a way to easily change your mounting block so that you can install a fixture of your choice...otherwise, you might be stuck with fixtures that have the same size mounting plate as your current fixture.

And I always prefer my front door to be a different color than any siding, trim or shutter on the facade. For example, our colonial home had creamy yellow siding, black shutters, and a red front door. The front door really stood out (in a good way), and we received lots of compliments on our facade.
1 Like   Thanked by Amie Horvath    August 22, 2013 at 1:31PM
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beeloved
Guess it depends a little on your interior style what sort of statement you'd like your front door to make. I'm inclined to a madly intense yellow/green and can't explain why.
If you're not already a Maria Killam fan (colour genius) here's a link: http://www.mariakillam.com/category/exterior-colour/ http://pinterest.com/pin/29203097555968631/ (this is an inspirational portico)
Love the idea of a portico. And taking some time to get the foundation plantings right will really pay off in the long run. If you have friends who garden, pick their brains and beg shamelessly for divided perennials!
If you decide to paint the shutters, I think something softer would be more up to date, and I'd probably paint the garage door as well. Not the same as the front door, but something less stark to tie it in to the rest of the house.
Best of luck! Looking forward to the 'after' shots.
0 Likes   Thanked by Amie Horvath    August 22, 2013 at 1:51PM
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beeloved
Oops! wanted to say a curving path (flagstone) would soften up the line to the entry of the house. As a future project, a flared walkway from the sidewalk right up to the front door would be spectacular and give the house some serious presence.............not to mention great definition for more flower beds.
1 Like   August 22, 2013 at 1:54PM
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PRO
The Color People
First, relax. The house is really pretty true to historic form. There is absolutely no need to add or subtract for the door surround. Removing the screen door is a good idea so you see the door better. Butterscotch with yellow siding is not a good idea if for no other reason that you lose all historic overtones. It is a pretty firm rule that the front doors and shutters should be the same color- it holds the house together. An different colored door almost always elicited a feeling of "huh?" Granted sometimes it can work but not on your house, you'll just hurt all its good features

The garage door could use a color to tie that part of the house to the main house because the white commands entirely too much attention. If nothing else use the siding color although it is not ideal. Ideal would be a yellowed tan a value step of two darker than the siding color but is yellow is very hard to work with because the yellow will have a great tendency to get too colorful. It may take some patience and lots of sampling to get it right. The body color thankfully is such that a lot of punch colors will work with it for the shutters and door from olives to greens to reds to black to even turquoises. And the lamps are fine.

That is all you really need to do. Then turn your attention to landscaping the lack of which is your real problem. Enjoy your house it is very handsome
0 Likes   Thanked by Amie Horvath    August 22, 2013 at 3:23PM
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Amie Horvath
Hubby is off today - front storm/screen door is coming off today - looks like I got a lot of support to get rid of the door. This is the beginning of our front yard projects! I'm going to hunt for some great pots/urns this weekend also for the front stoop - need something to decorate for the upcoming holidays. I'll post an updated pic soon.
0 Likes   August 23, 2013 at 6:37AM
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Amie Horvath
Judi.. oooh...the farm house pic with the light yellow and cream trim is pretty - I'm not a fan of the stark white either - I'll have to keep that one in mind for when we are ready to tackle that. It is pretty. Thank you :)

The just about black roof throughs me off a bit with our house - the gray is beautiful on the farm house.
0 Likes   August 23, 2013 at 6:40AM
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Amie Horvath
beeloved...our interior style is family friendly, outdoorsy , casual, with a little touch of some old/used items here and there in simple styles. Woods are walnut or cherry, lots of dark sandy wall.... neutral with brown accent wall at the back of the house, berry/clay/dark red accents in main living area with some pine cones and wood sticks - love deep warm jewel tones. Have a purple/lime green garden theme going in the den. And bright red and creme in the playroom. I would say "traditional" though if I had to lable our interior (except playroom - that would be more modern)
0 Likes   August 23, 2013 at 8:31AM
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Amie Horvath
Front storm/screen door is gone! It's been mended but we still have to touch up/paint the trim work white for now - to fix the holes from the door. Yeah - we can see the front door - looks so much better! I covered our messy garage up :) oh - and I won't use this type of flower in the front again - we need to water it every day - or else they look like this.
2 Likes   August 23, 2013 at 2:00PM
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0 Likes   Thanked by Amie Horvath    August 28, 2013 at 8:32PM
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Amie Horvath
http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/photos/0,,20647720_21241792,00.html A full front purch with a bumped out area in the middle, square columns with a little detail - getting closer!
0 Likes   January 9, 2014 at 1:03PM
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yoboseiyo
that front porch would cause your house to lose all the historical charm it has right now.
i could see a small portico over the door if absolutely necessary ( http://tinyurl.com/qh2j6qk ), but your house is a pretty federalist. don't fight that, go with it. i'd paint the shutters a charcoal grey so they make sense with the roof color.

i could also see a pergola or similar over the garage door in a charcoal to bring the color and greenery over there, but it would need to be the correct design to make sense with your home.
0 Likes   January 9, 2014 at 1:28PM
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Amie Horvath
Pergola at garage. I like that idea.
0 Likes   January 10, 2014 at 2:51PM
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