Curb Appeal

holly210April 23, 2009

This is what my house looks like now. Any suggestions? I have tried to upload a picture and have no idea if it is going to work. I have had a lot of mixed reactions on the yellow door. I wanted something upbeat hence the yellow choice. This is C2 paint so it really has a lot of yellow pigment. Also, any suggestions on the shutters? The roof will stay blue and of course the bricks will stay, huh, orange. Thanks.

Here is a link that might be useful: [

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Seems to lack "snap" somehow...this is pretty primitive but maybe it might inspire you. If you can't rebuild the porch and columns into something beefier (which could be expensive), a handyman could build this as a freestanding arbor, which would be very pretty with a vine growing up the side.

Although I've made this look very symmetrical, I think you need to be more symmetrical on the house itself - specifically the windows being two different types, is somewhat jarring - and less so on the landscaping. Plants with more interesting foliage, with a variety of not only color but shape and texture, will add a year-round interest that can't be matched by using just flowers.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2009 at 7:48PM
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I agree. It does lack snap. I like what you did. I actually had a contractor quote me a price $6,000 to redo the portico area which is out of the question for now. An arbor is a cool idea that might work instead. I know the windows are not the same size, but it would be a lot of work (I think) to knock more bricks and make them symmetrical. The plants are bland and will look into your suggestions for more all around color. Btw, what program did you use to do this sample idea? Also, do you really think a red door is the right color? Thanks.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2009 at 8:16PM
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I don't think the size of the windows needs to be symmetrical, but they need to be the same 'type'. Either go with the muntins (which I prefer) or not.

I tried different colors for the door but nothing seemed to work until I tried a true, clear red. It's the white and black trim that makes the door "pop" and picks up the color of the bricks. Extending the porch or building an arbor gives the house a greater depth. Right now it's flat, and the monochromatic yard looks too expansive and dull with nothing that links the building to the lawn.

I used Powerpoint after converting your photo to a .jpg I could overlay.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2009 at 10:44PM
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I think you can do a lot with paint and some modestly priced changes. I think there is too much white. I would like to see the downspouts in dark brown or copper color. And I would like to see all the white trim and railings in that same dark brown color.

The shutters could be the same brown or a tone or two brighter. They could also still be blue, but less faded, a richer, deeper blue that coordinates with the brown and yellow.

I love the yellow door but it is hidden by the storm door. If a storm /screen door is necessary, a new narrow frame storm/screen , perhaps wood, in the same color as the downspouts would almost disappear.

Add a hefty trellis to the left (outside edge) of the smaller double hung windows. Plant something with good year round interest like climbing hydrangea -- ask your garden center.

New, bolder house numbers, new bolder mailbox, new porch light. Move the flag away from the porch.

Add a chunky stone border to the beds -- maybe curving the beds a bit down the sides of the walk -- and more variety in the plants, less stiff and more floppy. The stone should be earthy, not white. I wonder about staining the concrete walk and the concrete stoop to an earthier color.

I am a little distracted by the knobs on top of the handrails -- although darker paint would diminish them -- and I wonder if both handrails are necessary. It gives a bit of a cattle chute appearance to the front. I think one hand rail would be enough and the other side could be balanced with by a planter or pot.

Perhaps the bed in front of the larger window could be extended out into the yard and a small, flowering tree could be planted in the curved out part of the bed centered on the window.

It is a sweet house and the yellow door shows you have a good eye and great flair. Have fun.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2009 at 8:14AM
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I love this site! I have read it for years and finally decided that I need help. I gotten some great suggestions. I wanted to respond to a couple of them please. Great idea about "matching" the windows, but I was thinking about replacing the larger one with a bay window to make the living room appear somewhat larger. What do you think of that idea? It wouldn't be symmetrical then unless both were bay but that would be weird right? I suppose I painted the trim and railings white to match the windows since they come from the factory already white. So, can the windows stay white with everything else painted brown or copper? I mean you don't paint the vinyl or whatever it is window parts that are white, right? I do have a hard time with brown. I just don't care for it that much. It just seems drab. The only good thing about brown is that everything would fade into the brick. Is this the idea? I would probably keep the shutters a richer blue. They are vinyl and have never been painted. I think I can paint them. I would love to change the storm door to a "see through" type door. It's a necessary door since it gets dark inside without opening the door for more natural light. My military husband insists on a flag. It's even lit at night--nice effect actually. So, where would you put it instead? On the brick itself? The gardens do extend a bit down the walk though it's hard to tell from the picture. Maybe they shouldn't be so symmetrical. There is actually a large dogwood in front of the larger window. The garden is about five feet from the tree. Should I hook it together? Also, do you mean the arbor/trellis should be at the side of the house? Thanks so much. It really helps to have another eye look at the property.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2009 at 9:08AM
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Wow, that is a sweet house and I also love your yellow door. I think black shutters would look wonderful with the yellow door. An arbor would also look really nice, and not cost you an arm and leg.

Keep us posted.


    Bookmark   April 24, 2009 at 3:58PM
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I like the black shutters, I would think a black door to match would still pop and be classic at the same time. The flag is big, in the picture I made mine smaller so it fits the size of the house better. I also added two white columns, they are a little heavier and I think add a little something to the front. For more color I would suggest adding more flowers to the landscaping or on either side of the sidewalk leading up to the house, maybe a planter on the front steps would be nice.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2009 at 7:57PM
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I like the black shutters. I was just thinking, maybe I should just take them off completely. Maybe I should put a few window boxes. Do you think that would look weird? Thanks again for all of the suggestions.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2009 at 9:21PM
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Window boxes might be nice-I think the shutters add to the house so I wouldn't remove them the house might look bare and unfinished otherwise.

If you do the black shutters think about adding a strip of black above each window like I did in the picture so the shutters don't look like their floating on the windows.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2009 at 9:37PM
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Shutters are a classic look with brick. I wouldn't take them off.

The problem with window boxes is that your windows are different sizes. One window box will be higher than the other, so you need to figure out a way to compensate for that.

Brown trim will disappear into the brick, which is something you may or may not wish to have happen. Painting the windows depends on what type of window you put in. You can't paint vinyl, I believe.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2009 at 1:18PM
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I love the yellow door. :) I also happen to like the blue shutters. 'Course I tend toward the artsy and unique rather than houses "fixed" to look like everybody else's. Sweet. I would just work on the plantings. Agreement is optional. :)

    Bookmark   April 26, 2009 at 7:06PM
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Well, thanks Piper! It's funny that I just took a drive through my neighborhood and said those exact same words to my passenger. I don't want my house to look like everyone else's. There were so many houses with a red door and black shutters! I didn't realize what a popular, traditional color scheme that is for this type of house. Anyway, I am still thinking about some different ideas, even if I just paint the shutters a more rich blue.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2009 at 8:50PM
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I like the yellow door. It is different. I like it with the white storm door, too. It looks to me like you softened the railing by making it a rich french vanilla creamy color. Is that just me? Is it really white?

I also like the blue shutters, and if you plan to paint them, can you go with a grey/blue color that complements the grey roof? Like this cadet blue

Here is a link that might be useful: cadet blue

    Bookmark   April 27, 2009 at 11:47PM
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Nancy in mich - you are right it is rich french vanilla. How observant you are! I love the cadet blue. The roof is a blue/grey so this is a perfect color. Thanks for the commpliments and suggestions.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2009 at 9:22PM
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I think a darker blue on the shutters and painting the storm door yellow to match you front door would enhance the look of your house.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2009 at 6:11PM
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I love your yellow door too. The yellow screen door in the previous post looks good too!
I think there must be a better color for the shutters, tho. Maybe you can do something with the gutters too? Can you lose those railings? Small vines on each pillar?
Like you, I hestitate to get rid of shrubs, must be a way to keep them! How about some sort of colorful sculpture next to the double-hungs?

    Bookmark   May 9, 2009 at 9:26AM
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