My little house needs paint

scampiMay 21, 2008

Hi everyone,

I'm fairly new to this forum, but not new to GW. I spend most of my time lurking everywhere from the house forums to the gardening side. We bought our little home about 2.5 years ago and we are just getting around to doing some exterior updating. The long range plan is to hopefully bump up the roof to make this little ranch into a cape with dormers, but since we bought at the height of the market, we won't be investing a lot of money for a while. I've convince DH to help me paint the exterior over the upcoming holiday weekend. I've been playing on the BM and SW paint sites with their color viewers but I'm having a hard time finding combinations that work well on a small home. I guess we want it to blend into the surroundings, as opposed to stand out. There is a little cape not far from us that has blue siding, cream trim, red shutters and door, and we like that, but I just don't think it will look good on our house.

I've been playing with tan shades for the siding, with cream trim color and reds and black shutters. I kind of like them but I just don't know on this little house.

I've attached a link to a pic of the house. I hope this works.

Thanks for any ideas and suggestions you may have!

Here is a link that might be useful:

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Oh, it's so cute! I might make it a lighter, creamy color, but you could also try a very pale green, which would certainly help it to blend in, but not disappear at all, and will look cool and fresh for a long time. You could do white trim, but also a darker green, or maybe even a pale, salmony pink (not an gooey pink!) and then match the outside of your curtains to that.

    Bookmark   May 21, 2008 at 2:50PM
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Thanks Lucy. I think it's rather cute too. I just hate the current color. The picture isn't 100% accurate though. It's more of pinky color now - we call it shrimp pink and it has very dark brown trim. I wish the PO didn't use vinyl replacement windows. The white is so stark! I do like their efficiency though.

Funny you should mention the curtains.... we have those old white roller shades and I never really noticed them until I saw them in the picture! We have wooden blinds on the windows on the back side of the house but I haven't gotten around to redecorating the front rooms yet!

I may need to hang out at the Decorating Forum and see if I can get some tips from them. They seem to be a lively bunch!

    Bookmark   May 21, 2008 at 3:04PM
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Darling little house, even like the garage in back. And I see you've been landscaping too.

Personally I would paint it white and use black shutters, change the front screen door and a bright color for entry door. As much as white sounds plain, it is an easy upkeep and would make the house look larger. A small pergola over the front steps would soften all.

Do try the Decorating forum as you mentioned. They are terrific about coming up with suggestions.

    Bookmark   May 21, 2008 at 4:24PM
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I agree with emagineer!

    Bookmark   May 21, 2008 at 4:52PM
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Postum, thanks. I hesitated writing that. Usually tend to read posts and sometimes think I may be way off base if answering.

    Bookmark   May 22, 2008 at 10:13AM
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Gee thanks for the compliments everyone. emagineer, that's not a garage that's our dining room! It's a whopping 8x10' room! LOL
We do have a 1 car detached garage that is over on the right side but it's not in the pic. This is one of those older homes that has a backwards layout. The driveway and garage are on the right side of the house, and you can enter either in the front door - into the carpeted LR, or go all the way around to the far left side and enter into the DR/mudroom. Not too practical, especially in New England winters. :-(

I spent time online last night showing your suggestions to DH and searching for pics and he won't come around to white. It's not my fav either. The house right behind ours is white with green trim and shutters - typical New England color scheme and a bit too common for us. Directly across from our front door (Behind my back when I took this photo) is a house just like ours, but the DR and garage have been expanded and incorporated into the house, so it looks like a longer ranch. This one is light gray with dark gray trim and shutters.

These are 2 colors that DH likes:


and blue:

I like them both myself, but I think the blue may be too dark on such a small house. I certainly don't want it to look any smaller than it already is!

Why does this have to be so hard? :-)

I love the suggestion for the pergola! After we get the house painted, my next project was to liven up the front entrance! It's going to be a challenge though. The front faces N-NE and only gets sun from about 10am to noon. Once the giant oaks leaf out it's like we live in the deep forest!

    Bookmark   May 22, 2008 at 11:16AM
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Hi Scampi, I also have a small house in N.E. and like you I'm not crazy about the average colors schemes seen here so we painted the house SW raisin which is very similar to your taupe, We did a darker shade of it on the trim and then went wow with the door. My dh made the door and I made a leaded glass window for it, he made the forged hinges and I carved the handle. It's straight up and down planks like Salem houses. Right now I have it a pumpkin color glazed with brown. The roof is a similar color. It looks nothing like the other houses and it blends in to the woodsy area where we live. Sooooooo I'm for the taupe!!! LOL

    Bookmark   May 23, 2008 at 1:19AM
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Hi scampi....your house is adorable! Here's my 2 cents:
I also have a small house (1400 sq. feet). I painted the exterior BM Revere Pewter, with white window casings and black shutters. I hope you don't take offense to this, but I think your shutters are too small for the windows. I would get black shutters that match the length of your windows. I have a stained wooden door, but you could paint yours either sagey green, black or red. Hope you find what you are happy with!

    Bookmark   May 28, 2008 at 12:03PM
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Shutters have always intrigued me. They always seem to look too short for the windows. But their history of use is to cover only the windows and not the trim. Mine are this way and I feel they need to be longer visually. But looking at other houses, shutters are still short. I think the older shutters (original) looked better because they were heavier and included the hardware, which isn't used on them anymore.

Anyhow, I agree with you.

Scampi, have been reading the post over on Decorators Forum. They are so good there and helping you. Anyone else reading this should hop over and see the photo shopping done on her house.

    Bookmark   May 29, 2008 at 8:24AM
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Below is a link to the cutest house (in my opinion) on Rate My Space with some of the earthy tones you mentioned.

I am fully aware this example is not the same style as your home, but I think the color combos are something you could easily incorporate and pull off pretty well.

Here is a link that might be useful: Cute Bungalow-Rate My Space

    Bookmark   May 30, 2008 at 8:42PM
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we just painted the exterior of our home -- looks very similar to yours. the old color of our house was very similar to the picture of the shed you posted. I think the color of our house was BM hamilton blue. we just painted the exterior again and after buying tons of sample colors we chose BM wolf grey with black shutters, white trim and a black door. I really love the way the house looks now. I loved the blue when we had it but I think I like the grey even better. Good luck -- decisions are so hard ?!?

    Bookmark   June 13, 2008 at 11:02PM
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A bit OT, but there is a new show on HGTV which is using the Rate My Space to re-do the ones which got the lowest ratings. Premiers tommorrow.

Here is a link that might be useful: Rate my Space TV show

    Bookmark   June 14, 2008 at 9:00AM
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Hey Scampi...what did you end up doing???

    Bookmark   June 14, 2008 at 10:26PM
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