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Readers Respond: Accent Colors for a Traditional Farmhouse

Responses: 4

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The owner would like to add color accents to this traditional Farmhouse. What colors do you suggest? The most interesting and most helpful color ideas will be posted on this page. Suggest color ideas

Helping the white

Since you don't want to paint all the house, I am assuming you want to keep the white. It is difficult to add detailing to a white house as it has to be darker and will tend to jump off the house, so I wouldn't do too much. The best thing to highlight the porch would be to paint the fascias/gutters at the roof line and do that also with the fascias on the gables and gutters/fascias on the sides of the roof. You would not want to go deeper than a mid-tone for this because you want the house to blend together. Lastly the shutters/doors (which should be the same color) can add a lot of personality and set the tone you want your house to have. A red would be fun, a coral or turquoise even more fun, or you could go with an almost black blue, green or brown to be formal and more historic feeling. Use a gloss for the punch color and a satin or semi gloss for the trim.
—the_color_guy

Depends on your location

Hi. The red brick is a minor player according to this picture, so I wouldn't worry about clashes with colors. If you were my client, I would suggest painting the exterior porch walls a deep color (those under the arches). I would then paint the front door the same deep color for a balanced tie in. Finally, I would then paint the shutters a lighter coordinate than the door & porch walls. Applying the deeper colors below grounds the house, & the lighter shade above draws the gaze upwards. For a traditional look, a navy bottom and slate blue shutters would be nice (or, slate blue lower and a lighter shade off the same paint chip card would be great too). For a less traditional look, paint the exterior porch walls a deep grey, and the door/shutters the same shade - whether blue or purple-blue or red...Due to the scale/massive amount of white paint present on the house, deeper colors are needed to balance things out. Good luck!
—Guest Lisa

Choose Soft Colors

Very nice house. 1949 is late for the style, but it looks like a foursquare with gable roof. There were lots of variations. I would go with natural soft colors like light tan, very soft yellows, creams etc. for the body and browns, reds and woodtones for trim and shutters. -- I used Duron "yellow buff" on interior "stucco" plaster in my house. It is a warm, creamy white that is almost yellow. It really enhances the texture. I considered using it on my stucco exterior, but feared being too repetitive. -- J. Myers is right: shutters should operate, or look like they could. Sometimes storm windows interfere with complete closure of real shutters, but no one would know the difference. The classic shutter color is dark green, which might be nice in your case. -- Have fun. If you make a mistake, paint is reversible.
—Guest Bobby

Highlight the Reds

Shutters: Enlarge and make functioning (actually moving/ swinging) ones that match the size of the window. Ignore anything that keeps the shutter from opening all the way... it only makes them more charming and real. Very cozy look. --- Colors: Use the red to your advantage by highlighting the inside of the arches, porch ceiling, front door, and perhaps the alcove-like ledges where the windows and doors are recessed into the wall (remember, you don't have to use that same value of red... play with the different shades until you find one that's not so bold and contrasting; you could cause a brain aneurysm of a passerby by using such dark red everywhere). But the natural brick is a cool thing. Don't paint it, but if it already is, then your possibilities are endless. -- Great House!
—Guest J. Meyers

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Accent Colors for a Traditional Farmhouse

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