Choosing Exterior Colors

By Michael Peters (Sydney, Australia)

Choosing Exterior Colors for Your Home

It may sound surprising, but the first rule for choosing the color for your home’s exterior is this: don’t pick your favorite.

Consider your house and its era. A California Bungalow will never look its best in Federation colors. A Victorian gem needs quirky contrasting colors, but your contemporary home calls for a different approach.

It’s always best to stick with the colors from the house’s era. You can research this yourself, but your painters and decorators should be able to guide you in this matter.

Once you’ve determined the best main color for your house, consider doing something special for the trims. Fascia boards, guttering, balustrading, decorative fretwork in timber and iron, and other such decorative details can be given a different color to highlight the home’s special architectural details and relieve the eye.

Choices like Brunswick Green, Indian Red, and Charcoal are traditional for these trims, but we like to see deep purples, deep navy, and royal blue for trims. These colors are used sparingly and will highlight areas without overwhelming the eye.

Courtney and Wise has won awards for a Mosman Federation home in heritage colors, and for a timber worker’s cottage in Manley/Fairlight with deep wines and greens against a butter yellow background. You can see photos of both of these houses at our website. Your home may not be up for awards, but you’ll award it your own seal of approval when carefully-chosen colors reveal its full charm.

The best paint colors from Sherwin Williams – “Paint Color Cheat Sheets” – A great short-cut to finding a perfect paint color.

Find answers to your paint color questions.

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