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elmullen5

Help with exterior trim color for our brown house

elmullen5
10 years ago

I'm new to the forums and I just posted this questions in a different area but I think this is where it needs to go. Im not sure how to upload a picture so I've included a link to a picture of the house online. We have recently purchased this home and we have plans to update a few things on the exterior. Our plans are as follows:

1- Repaint the trim a different color (it is currently forest green....the picture is very dark but in reality the green is much brighter and contrasting. I have tried to convince myself that we can live with it, but ultimately I know that I hate the color and it has to be changed).

2- Repaint the deck dark brown to match the garage door (or possibly replace it with maintence free decking in dark brown).

3- Add stonework to the pillars on the deck (I am thinking wider-based pillars with stonework on the bottom part.....to add a craftsman element to the home and to balance the stonework from the garage side). Just fyi, there is also a fireplace on the back of the home with stonework.

4- Add stonework along the bottom of the front and sides of the home.

My questions are what color should we have the trim painted? I don't what the trim to be a focal point, but I do want a contrasting color because the siding and the roof are the same medium brown color. And also, should we do anything different with the garage? I think it looks a little odd with the stonework along the sides and empty in the middle....like there should be a window in the middle or something. It just looks empty and the location of the stonework seems odd. Also, what color front door? Should we have a dark brown to match the decking and garage door? Or maybe a pop of color? Any advice or ideas are greatly appreciated! Thank you so much!

Here is a link that might be useful: front of home

Comments (37)

  • elmullen5
    Original Author
    10 years ago

    ok, here is the house

  • enailes
    10 years ago

    Very pretty house, is it, you don't like that green or green in general. I would personally go with a darker green on the trim and stain the deck the same color of the house. You could always use gray on the trim but I would go for a low contrast and use the stone work for accenting.

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  • elmullen5
    Original Author
    10 years ago

    Thanks for the reply enails. I would say I don't like green in general. I understand that the green and brown here give it a nice rustic look, but I think it just stands out too much for my taste. I was thinking gray also since there are grays in the stone. Using the stonework for accenting is definitely our strategy.

  • enailes
    10 years ago

    elmullen 5,
    The gray trim with stone posts on a darker stained deck would look very nice. Were you going to keep the same color on the door or match to the new trim color?

  • elmullen5
    Original Author
    10 years ago

    Im not sure on what to do with the door.....it will definitely be changed from its current color though. Maybe a dark stain/paint to match the new deck? Maybe gray? I'm just not sure...

  • terezosa / terriks
    10 years ago

    Your picture was a bit dark and hard to see the details, so I lightened it up for you:

  • elmullen5
    Original Author
    10 years ago

    Thank you terriks! Wow that is definitely an accurate depiction now.

  • elmullen5
    Original Author
    10 years ago

    The more I think about it, the more I want to just take the stone off the garage right away....are there any ideas of what to do with the garage in place of the stone? Should we just replace it with more brown sinding?

  • graywings123
    10 years ago

    What you have seems suitable for the style of the house. The stone serves the purpose of breaking up the horizontal lines of the siding in what is a (lovely) wide house. The green trim works with the siding, and there are a limited number of colors that can both blend in and stand out as green seems to. I might play around with the shade of green, but I wouldn't change it.

  • hosenemesis
    10 years ago

    You have a beautiful home.

    I think the stone on the sides would look better if it ended at the top of the garage door, and the siding went all the way across. Then it would look structural- like it is a stone pillar holding up the lintel and not a decoration.

    I love the color of the house, but agree that the green does not look right. It's too green. A dark bronze trim might look nice. I think the trim should be darker than the house color.

    Renee

  • Tmnca
    10 years ago

    How about a lighter tan/light brown? I think grey would look too cool with the brown.

  • lascatx
    10 years ago

    If it were my house, I would take one of the beige tones from the stone for the trim (maybe two -- one for windows and another for trim), use some stone edging and or a large accent rock or two in your landscaping to bring the stone on across the front and then pick an accent color for the door. The green might look great there, but it could be red, blue, even yellow or orange if you want it to really stand out. I'd probably move the two bushes right in front of the door and have potted greenery, flowers, urns or something either side of the door to draw you in and welcome you.

    You could consider keeping the green on the windows or the upper trim and adding a beige to the other to add some life. The green isn't bad, it's just that everything is dark except the stone, and even that has a heavy feel to it. You don't need a major facelift -- just need to add the sparkle to its eye.

  • awm03
    10 years ago

    I think for houses that don't have really attractive trim or nice architectural details, you're better off not picking them out with an accent color. What do you think of this mock-up? Taupe-y trim for subtle contrast, corbels under all peaks, a larger light over the garage, arts & crafts garage door, stone columns, and some kind of blue for the entry door (preferably an Arts&Crafts style, which I forgot to paste in):

  • geokid
    10 years ago

    Oh my gosh, awm03, I don't have anything to add, but I just wanted to say that that looks lovely!

  • lascatx
    10 years ago

    I like the stone columns -- gives a lighter touch across the front and ties the stone in all at once. Very simple and effective.

  • Rachel_NYC
    10 years ago

    Love the stone accents added to the porch. I would go with a lighter color to brighten up the whole thing, and I would paint the deck to match the trim. Maybe a warm grey - like BM edgecomb grey?

  • elmullen5
    Original Author
    10 years ago

    awm03- wow I love your suggestions! I am surprised at what a difference a new garage door would make....I was sure that the only "solution" for the garage was to take down the stone and do something completely different. I had def planned on a larger light fixture for the garage. And the corbel also helps to make the space not look so empty- what a great, simple idea! I still am thinking of more angular, wide-based columns on the porch....but just seeing the stone there helps to visualize everything. I do like the lighter taupe trim...although it may not be quite enough contrast for what I'm thinking. Maybe a little lighter taupe? Or a grey color....although as tinan has mentioned, maybe the grey would be too "cool" against the brown. Thanks so much for all of the suggestions so far!

  • elmullen5
    Original Author
    10 years ago

    Rachel, I just checked out the edgecomb grey and I think that would look very nice! It's such a warm grey...not the cool color that I automatically think of with grey.

  • awm03
    10 years ago

    Yes, those stone columns in the mock-up aren't the best. What you have in mind is much better. But at least you can see that your idea of bringing stone to the front looks great & makes better sense of the stone around the garage.

    I'm just not fan of plain grays & brown, but bluish gray & brown or greenish gray & brown are rather nice together. I looked at the Edgecomb gray. It's very pretty, but light, which IMO would lead to the problem of picking out architectural elements that are best not jumping out at you. The window design & placement is bland, if you'll forgive me for saying so, and emphasizing the gutters/trim just adds distracting lines. Subtle, low contrast color on the trim would make the house look unified instead of a bunch of colored this 'n thats placed here 'n there. Some houses look good with contrasting trim and some don't. I think this house is the latter.

    On the whole, though, it's a handsome house: nice proportions & scale. A little landscaping, some Arts & Crafts touches, and voila!

  • awm03
    10 years ago

    Here's a greenish beigy gray. I don't care for all those plain, square windows dominating the facade:

    With lighter trim & the windows painted out, plus a sample of adding color on the garage:

  • hosenemesis
    10 years ago

    Wow! That first photoshop with the stonework and trim in taupe is spectacular. It really brings out the character of the house.

  • Circus Peanut
    10 years ago

    You could check out the Sherwin Williams historic exterior palette, which has some lovely artsy crafty era combinations that sync with your house style:

  • cathie2029
    10 years ago

    Here's another a bit toned down with different columns.

  • awm03
    10 years ago

    oooh, wonderful columns! kali, can you make the siding darker so we can see how the trim color works with the current dark brown siding? Thanks.

  • elmullen5
    Original Author
    10 years ago

    Wow, look at all my options now! Thanks for all the mock ups! I have to agree with you awm03, that the trim needs to be a subtle contrast. I'm not sure if you can tell from the pictures, but all of the trim is a plasticy-looking material (galvanized metal?)....not exactly what I want to stand out on our home. That being said, I think that the latest mock-up by kali2024 is a great in-between choice...enough contrast to break up all the other brown, but subtle enough to not be a focal point. And I also love what you've done with the columns kali2024! The railings being a lighter color I think helps to take the emphasis away from all of the square windows too. Do you think we should still consider adding some stonework along the bottom and sides of the home to "tie it all together"? or would that be too much stone? Looking at the house with the stone pillars on it, I still feel like its unbalanced with so much stone on the garage side....

  • littlebug5
    10 years ago

    I like kali's trim color too, and I like the one by awm03 with the whole pillar faced with stone.

    (kali, did you forget the window on the right?)

  • lascatx
    10 years ago

    Would you consider a barn style garage door?

    Here is a link that might be useful: some garage door ideas

  • elmullen5
    Original Author
    10 years ago

    What I would really love to do is have pillars like these and re-do the area above the two middle pillars with beamwork like this. That would complete the look and make the front porch the focal point no question. But now we're talking major renovations......I can dream at least right?

  • Tmnca
    10 years ago

    I love the taupe trim and stone on the columns to balance to garage! The lighter browns look nice too.

  • lazydaisynot
    10 years ago

    These mock-ups and suggestions are terrific. I think you could achieve a really nice look incorporating the suggestions above (corbels, paint colors and columns) but keeping the existing garage door, repainted and without the lighter horizontal accent board. The "new" garage door is wonderful, but since I'm thrifty I'd probably stick with the old one and work on making the front door and entry way the focal point.

  • Sqhomedesign
    10 years ago

    I think You need to add something more bright and add some contrast also. The proposals of Kali2024 and ellmulen5 are really nice!

  • elmullen5
    Original Author
    10 years ago

    lazydaisynot, I'm glad to hear that you think our existing door would look fine as is because this whole project will be happening in phases. We will replace outdoor lighting right when we move in in a couple weeks, then this spring/summer we will paint the front and back porches and the trim. The pillars and doors will hopefully be a project for next summer depending on how much we are able to save in the meantime. There are so many little projects that we have for the home, so we are forced to prioritize and compromise. So it's nice to know that our "work in progress" may still look somewhat put together along the way!

  • lazydaisynot
    10 years ago

    Hey, we've been in our house for 22 years and there are still projects pending! Of course now we're cycling back to re-do things we did 20-some years ago.

    Enjoy your lovely house!

  • hosenemesis
    10 years ago

    Gorgeous colors, and I love the big posts and the beamwork above the door. So many wonderful options. It's a great house to start with, so anything you do will just make it more beautiful.
    Renee

  • bulldinkie
    10 years ago

    I like the last photo,maybe color to match stone,grout?I thought light creme,you cant use real stone above door now you need beams etc to hold up.My son took cedar siding and did a big sun burst it is so pretty he has type porch & all you have,his siding is cedar,stained,maybe wood to match your railing etcmaybe stained same color to balance out, His shutters are dark forrest green,a small window,something ornamental,hubbys a builder lol

  • kswl2
    10 years ago

    I love kali's second mock up! But I would like to see all the trimwork in the taupe color, including the top part of the columns across the front, and the railings of the front porch. I would also paint the front door a pretty red color, perhaps barn red, and----maybe---do a new garage door with the same color.

    Or do the garage the color of the body of the house and use the taupe trim color to pick out the accents in the new craftsman style door. I also like the idea of using stone to face the foundation in the front.

    Great ideas, wonderful possibilities!