Board and batten vs. shake siding. Opinions please!

livingreen2013October 4, 2012

Hey everyone! We were wondering if you could give us some feedback for our exterior finishes. We have only option #1 drawn:

Option #1- Board and batten on the sides, back and peaks of the house. Shake siding on the back sunroom and on the body of the front of the house. Stone on the columns, front and middle bump-out, and front of the garage.

Option #2- Board and batten on the majority of house, shake siding on the sunroom and in the peaks, and stone where it is drawn.

What do you think about the look of the board and batten on the front? What do you think would look best with the house? We also plan on doing an "x" design with the porch spindles. Thank you all for any advice.

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I can tell you that the board and batten siding on a previous home allowed water infiltration and proved to be a costly problem. Eventually the siding was completely replaced with cedar shake and some of the underlying sheathing needed to be replaced due to water damage and rot. Based on that experience I personally would avoid it. YMMV.

    Bookmark   October 4, 2012 at 10:30AM
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For me, it is helpful to have a context. Where are you and what kind of houses are in your area? To my eye, you already have a lot of visual interest with the rooflines, etc. I would go very simple.

    Bookmark   October 4, 2012 at 10:33AM
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Thank you for the thoughts thus far! That is worrisome about the water issues. I certainly hope that was an isolated event. We live in the midwest and there is a decent variety of houses in our community, but not a ton of new construction. It seems like a lot of the houses in the 70s or so had the board and batten look, but not any new construction. There are a lot of the shake shingle look, which we really do love, but we thought changing it up a bit with the board and batten would add an extra touch. I agree with what you're saying though kitschyKitch, I definitely don't want the house to read as being too "busy". Which way would you lean towards being more simple? Do you feel like the house as a whole is pleasing to the eye? Thanks again!

    Bookmark   October 4, 2012 at 11:06AM
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I think your house is very lovely and you must be thrilled.

It's so very personal, isn't it? I know some people who, for example, hate Victorians are think Tudors are awful. Other people have always wanted a gingerbread Victorian!

I tend to lack imagination so I would find a home I liked and essentially copy that. If that is what you have done, then you should be happy with the result.

I personally would chose something simpler overall, but that does not mean your house is too busy.

The only comment I would make that I don't think is too subjective is on the windows. On the back of the house, I think the large, curved window seems a bit modern for the rest of the windows. I might also say the same of the window inthe doorway (unless it is a spider web transom).

But really, the house is gorgeous. Enjoy!

    Bookmark   October 4, 2012 at 12:21PM
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Thank you so much kitschyKitch! We hand-drew the whole house and it's come together well, but then you always start to second guess yourself and the look as a whole. It is so true how personal it can be! Thank you for your encouraging words. I can see what you're saying about the window shapes. We still have some time before ordering so that's definitely something to consider. Any other ideas of whether or not an x-designed porch would look good with this house? Here's my inspiration photo...

    Bookmark   October 4, 2012 at 1:50PM
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I don't think there are any special problems with B&B siding, as with any installation, it's all about materials, preparation, installation and maintenance. I love B&B, but it is a very specific and casual look. We considered it for our house, but decided we wanted the eye to be drawn to the horizontal, so went with that. We also considered using cedar fish scale or this great, funky wavy siding in certain places, but to be brutally honest, we didn't have the $$, so went with plain Hardiboard. Your home is much larger, so I think you could go busier and add some interest without it seeming too busy.

I also think the windows on the back don't meld well with the rest of the house, but YMMV.

Here is a pic of our house, not dissimilar to yours (albeit a lot smaller and no attached garage). I would not be afraid to go bold with color too, I think a strong color or strong contrast between windows, trim and house would look great on your house, but I love color, again, YMMV.

Good luck-


Main entrance


Main entrance

    Bookmark   October 4, 2012 at 2:54PM
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sandyponder- your house is beautiful! I had never thought of the idea of a screened-in front porch. It works beautifully in your space. I definitely agree with the bold color choices and making the trim of the windows stand out. You did a great job with that in your home.
Any thoughts on what we could do with the back windows of the house? We do plan on trimming them more too than what is drawn...Any ideas would be great. Thanks again!

    Bookmark   October 4, 2012 at 5:57PM
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Thank you, we love he screened porch. Half of it is living area and the other half has a dining/game table, and we spend a ton of time out there. We also have single pane windows that replace the screens in the winter so it stays dry and provides a place to store wood (we heat with wood) skis, snowshoes, ice fishing gear, etc.

Regarding your windows in the back, they look like casements while the rest of your windows appear to be double hung, which looks a little disjointed to me. Also, is that one room with a double height ceiling or two rooms? It's not just about how it looks outside, it's also how the windows relate to the interior (IMO anyway). If you gave some more details about the interior (or post a floorplan) folks would chime in with suggestions.

Good luck-


    Bookmark   October 5, 2012 at 9:27AM
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Thanks again sandyponder for your response! The back bedroom and basement windows are all double hung, but don't have any muttens in them. Then the large windows I believe are either casement on the bottom, or fixed? The large set of windows in the middle of the house go to a 2-story, peak/vaulted great room. We can definitely look at doing some more arranging and looking into window design and look. Thanks again!
What's your thought on the x-design porch? Do you think it would go with the house look? What if we also did these "x" garage doors?
Thank you so much again!

    Bookmark   October 5, 2012 at 10:09AM
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