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Readers Respond: Paint This Folk Victorian House

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From the article: Paint This Victorian
Please help us choose colors for our featured Folk Victorian home. The most interesting and most helpful ideas will be posted below. Suggest color ideas

Painting your white house...

My house was all white, then in 1997 I chose a pale sunny yellow, white windows, medium sea green on the accents, and a clay pot color for the third color. People tell me it is beautiful. Now I need to sell it. Sigh!
—Guest Nancy Neilson

Color, for sure

Don't use white. It is harsh, shows off all the flaws in the surface, and not historic at all. If you must use white, use an off white, preferably one that is warm. The Victorian aesthetic was to use natural colors. Later in the era darker colors were preferred. Since you have white windows, you need to stay fairly light. You can use an off-white or light buff or tan for the trim and it will keep the windows from jumping off the buildings. These colors will actually allow the white windows to add some sparkle to the trim. An off white will also shadow better than a hard white and thus show off the detailing. Using this light a trim means you need to use a mid tone for the body which will allow the home to feel fairly historic as long as you use a natural color. Also make sure your body color works with your roof color. Adding a dark or bright punch color for the front door would be the minimum to make the most of this fabulous home.
—the_color_guy

Butter Yellow

I would paint it a buttery yellow with white trim. The yellow would make the white windows and trim look very nice. Maybe some green as well with shutters or such.
—aslfdioj

Choosing Colors

In picking Victorian house colors for our own house, I chose fabric that I love with several colors and used this to paint our Victorian.... it worked out great!!!
—Guest Tsal

Victorian Colors

Roberto, this is a Victorian. So you need to use deeper and bolder tones. Most houses from that period were painted with burgundies, bordeaux, and cognacs. And although Folk Victorian houses are orderly and symmetrical houses with an old fashioned flair, they represent an aura of incredible architectural outburst where intricate masonry made wood ornaments possible, resulting in the passionate nature of their expression. I do like the idea of the Marvin Replacement Sashes with a white cladding on the exterior, but I would pick a white with peach hues in it. As for the shutters, there are good catalogs featuring good choices. As for their color, I would go with crimson and match with gable ornaments, corbels, and elaborate porch railings. Black or brown roof is a must. Not an easy decision, but one you should make eventually. You may want to check for holes in your roof, too - not unusual for Victorian houses. L. Franck
—Guest Liam Franck

Victorian House

I like the look of colors of the same family with some lighter accent from a different but friendly color. I have been struggling to get my colors right. Now am trying to figure out how to get high enough up to safely paint the gingerbread stuff.
—Guest jenzpaintin

Victorian Colors

Green roof - architectural shingles. Gray house - medium to slate. Cranberry trim.
—Guest martha

Cream and Blue

I am not an expert on either Victorian houses nor designing in general, just an enthusiast. I think a creamy yellow (butter is what I call it) for the siding would highlight the white cladding beautifully, especially if you use white on your window & roof trim. I would also suggest a couple of accent colors for the porch, shutters, etc., but use two in the same color family. I think a blue coupled with a lighter blue would look fantastic with the cream and white color scheme. Good luck!
—Guest "K"

Watch Out For White Window Sashes

In choosing colors for your home a great book by Roger Moss is Victorian Exterior Decoration. If you paint your home WHITE, then the white window sashes will be acceptable. If you choose period earth tones - DO NOT use white on your window sashes. The white will create sort of block when viewing your home. Darker sashes will create a sense of depth and character. Just because your windows are vinyl or aluminum doesn't mean they can't be painted. There is nothing worse than seeing a house painted in earth tones and the only white on the house is the window sashes. Please reconsider. For more information refer to Victorian Homes Magazine. There is a house color section and I believe the last issue or so mentions about white sashes. Good luck.
—Guest OldHouseGuy

Consider Off-White

I would add the comment that old fashioned 'white' paints were not nearly as bright as modern whites, and they will have yellowed faster too. So an alternative to a dark colour is to use a cream or other off-white. Regards, Simon TL, www.thelondonhouse.co.uk
—Guest Simon TL

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Paint This Folk Victorian House

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