Exterior Color Scheme for 1892 Victorian

victoriandreamSeptember 27, 2009

So, we're going forward with our next restoration project for our 1892 Victorian in Wisconsin. Thanks again to all of you who have offered insights to previous conversations. As they say - to make a long story short...we've committed to an authentic exterior restoration of our gem - which means wood siding, wood trim and all the fixings (sounds like a festive thanksgiving dinner). We went back and forth about what materials to use and yes decided to go with wood. We will be recreating features based on original blueprints and photos.

Here's where I need your help...we're looking for feedback on our proposed exterior color scheme. To start, I would invite you to tour the two links below and share your thoughts, knowledge and experience in painting a home like this. At this time, I will explain very little about how we arrived at these colors because I'm interested in first gut reactions. Also, we are open to more exploration of colors so let this be your guide :-)

We plan to use C2 paint and the main colors you will see garam masala, cheetah, diego and spanish tile red.

Can't wait to hear you weigh in on this - here's your opportunity to help us paint our lady.


Exterior - http://s646.photobucket.com/albums/uu185/victoriandream/Exterior/

Exterior Color Scheme -


Here is a link that might be useful: Victoriandream Exterior Color Scheme

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I like the first scheme, photo 3, best. the second scheme is too low-contrast, and the third one has the dark green gables which makes it top-heavy. Most Queen Anne color plans went with the darkest body color on the first floor and lightened it for the second, then an accent in the gables to spice it up. Your porch rails and balusters look very good and jewel-like. A neat trick that Palliser Bros. sometimes did was to paint sash white with just the putty lines picked out in venetian red or black. Yes, white sash on cutting edge Queen Anne architecture.
I think you will end up with a spectacular old gal.

    Bookmark   September 27, 2009 at 6:48PM
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I like the second picture with the darker gables.
What a labor of love...!
Linda C

    Bookmark   September 27, 2009 at 11:18PM
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I like the 1st color scheme with the dark body. Beautiful house - look forward to seeing more of it.

    Bookmark   September 28, 2009 at 1:05PM
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I've yet see that dark sepia color work out well.

    Bookmark   September 28, 2009 at 3:16PM
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Thanks for the initial feedback. I'm not hearing many rave reviews or "wow, I love it" which makes me ask for further guidance. Right now, we tend to prefer the darker body - 1st picture of the blueprints and the colors that are shown on the outside of the house. Although, we wonder about the trim being enough contrast with the siding. Macv...tell me your thoughts about the dark sepia color not working out well. Also, what feelings or emotions do these colors create for each of you?
Any other ideas?

    Bookmark   September 28, 2009 at 5:31PM
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OK well I love it LOL Gorgeous :) (Number one). There isn't enough contrast in the second option.

The colors and the pictures of your lovely lady redressed make me smile. Warm, Inviting, and Elegant come to mind.

    Bookmark   September 28, 2009 at 10:36PM
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Robert Schweitzer, who has published a book called "Historic House Colors", also has a website of the same name. He also consults for a fee. I've attached his link for other ideas.

I definitely prefer your first choice.

Here is a link that might be useful: Historic House Colors

    Bookmark   September 29, 2009 at 5:39AM
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I also like the first one, have you started painting the house those colors? They look fantastic. Your house is amazing! I'm trying to decide between paint colors as well, you've inspired me to post-

    Bookmark   October 8, 2009 at 9:44AM
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Hi everyone,

Glad I could be of inspiration :-)
And funny you should mention Robert Schweiter. We've actually been consulting with him for some time. He works with the Sherwin Williams colors and since we've switched to looking at C2 colors - we've gotten somewhat stuck. We continue our conversations and he has been extremely patience and knowledgeable.

    Bookmark   October 17, 2009 at 4:38PM
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WOW, I think your color options are great.

Were doing some early planning on exterior color even though we know it wont be years till we can get to it. I like to plan ahead (WAYYY ahead). Any way, I have done some mock ups of our house much like you have, with color placement and all and found tha including the roof color made it far easier.

I wonder how your colors will look with a roof color in place.

Our roof is currently mint green (UGH) but since well need to put on a new one when we do the exterior, were trying out roof colors as we try out paint colors. It made a HUGE difference. Try it out, it may totally make up your minds for you.

    Bookmark   November 13, 2009 at 11:53AM
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Yes, planning ahead...I think we've been contemplating colors for over 2 years. It's not something we feel right about forcing and deadlines have come and gone.

Your suggestion about considering the roof color is really important. Thanks!

I connected with Christie Mitchell from Pecan Place about the colors on their home because someone had suggested plum as the trim color. She was very gracious and has done some amazing renditions for us. You can check them out at the link. Also, at this time we are mainly concerned about body colors, trim and sash. The porch details will get figured out once that happens. Any feedback on the impression these various options give?

Here is a link that might be useful: Exterior Renditions

    Bookmark   November 17, 2009 at 11:14AM
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Wow, excellent work on these - I am a big fan of 1-1 and 2-1, both olive trim and it appears you reversed the 2 buff-colored body colors on them. Your house is so massive I would recommend the darker trim colors. I like the value of the colors in the ones with the plum trim (but I am not a fan of purple on old houses - that's just me) and I think from a "massing" point, they are the best options. The visual weight they give to your roof line, with so many varied gables, gives it such a presence on your property. Hope this helps - I think I am the only one, sometimes, who prefers visually heavy houses - massive and a wee-bit foreboding ... spooky, even.

I am so happy seeing all your "colorations" since I have been doing the same (thank goodness for PhotoShop). Here's our favored one. I did 2 trim colors, Buff for the windows and dark olive/shutter green for the gables - The roof seemed to blow off when the gables were buff. Mine is a simple house, not the excessive details you have (I am jealous).

Here is a link that might be useful: The Joshua Shively House

    Bookmark   November 18, 2009 at 7:12PM
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