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How about an exterior color scheme for an 1898 Colonial Revival?

Posted by autumngal (My Page) on
Thu, Oct 8, 09 at 10:19

I've been inspired by Victoriandream to bring my obsession to finding the right colors for my house here.

We live in an 1898 Colonial Revival. Because of the large interior and exterior elements of American Foursquare and Victorian styles, my friend who is a historic preservationist has been encouraging me to look at those styles for inspiration (and has been lending me amazing books to help).


I've been inspired and have many color schemes that I would love, the main problem is my neighbor's homes. They are beautifully painted, but it so happens that no matter what color I choose, it seems to look like one house or the other. On the one side, anything green or grey looks just like this house:


On the other, anything yellow or brown looks like this house:


I believe the house originally was grey, with possibly white trim (can't see on the actual trim under the layers, but the porch rails were white) and forest green sashes. When I did a run with these colors- the sash color is entirely experimental- my son said in shock "I don't want to grow up in a grey house!!!" With the dark trim, it also looks lots like my next door neighbor's house:


Any ideas or suggestions? Our stained glass in the front is pink and blue, the stained glass on the side is mainly yellows.

Thanks so much!

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: How about an exterior color scheme for an 1898 Colonial Reviv

What about a blue, or gray-blue? Or a muted yellow or butterscotch? There are an infinite amount of colors that you could use and not look like your neighbors. Even if you just lighten or darken a color in neighbors homes, you could make your house different with trim colors. It comes down to your taste, the style of your home and the color of the roof. Did you see some combinations that you like in your friends book? Try some out on an inconspicuous part of the house. Don't loose heart; we have been trying out colors for a year and still haven't painted!!!

RE: How about an exterior color scheme for an 1898 Colonial Reviv

I was thinking blue as well, with a blue/gray deeper trim on the sashes and maybe highlight with either white or a rich plum. Your home is stately and needs to be strong (color wise) verses going too soft...I'm with your son on the all gray color scheme LOL but I do think a soft blue with deep gray would be gorgeous.

This little cottage is what I'm thinking as a highlight's plum, but with enough gray to be elegant and not obnoxious purple :)

Here's a light blue, dark blue and the plum color together with white accents as well:

I think it would stand out and yet still fit the house style for you. just an idea :)

I have (somewhere) a picture of a house like yours as's done in a pretty deep gad...not yellow, more gold, with a really rich amber trim. It was my husband's grandfathers home in MN. The colors together are pretty gorgeous, but it's could really screw that up by going too dark yellow and too red in the amber, but the two done right is pretty splendid....much more stand out than the blue and gray mind you, but still really gorgeous!

RE: How about an exterior color scheme for an 1898 Colonial Reviv

Thanks for the suggestions powermuffin and igloo they are so helpful. The pictures are amazing as well, Igloo, thank you! Fortunetly, my son has wavered a bit and now wouldn't mind so much growing up in a grey house. He's fickle. One would have thought he'd run away if I painted the house grey, now he likes it.

I really like that blue color combination- I'm going to keep playing with samples. If I get anywhere, I'll post my latest in the never ending rainbow on my house!

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