Choosing Exterior Colours

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Exterior painting is no small feat! When you are investing time and money into your home, you want to make sure what you are choosing covers many factors. You need to consider:

  • Paint Quality
  • Current Trends
  • Compatibility within your neighbourhood
  • Current fixtures that are in place (roofing, stonework, etc.)
  • Paint Sheen

When it comes to choosing quality, nothing beats Benjamin Moore’s Aura paint. Not only does it stand up to the elements with a lifetime guarantee, it also ensures a vibrant, richer finish and superior fade resistance in your chosen colour with Colour Lock™ technology. The high build formula provides extreme hide and coverage for fewer coats. If you’re worried about the exterior painting session coming to an end too soon, you’ll be pleased to learn that Aura withstands a lower temperature application, allowing you to extend the painting season. What’s more it even has mildew resistance, so you can apply with ease knowing that even in our Vancouver climate, your eaves will stay mildew free!

This year we are seeing a vast range of colours being chosen for homes’ exteriors.

Navy blue (Hale Navy HC-154) seems to be ever popular.

It’s vibrant, without being garish and the jewel like tones add a lavish finish that you’re sure to be pleased with. It’s also a beautiful colour for the summer, as it is reminiscent of sea side vacations, while also transitions well into the fall and winter, with it’s cooler tones. These photo’s below show a before and after of one of our customer’s recent colour updates. They used Hale Navy, HC-154, in Aura exterior.

Neutrals are also a popular choice; they allow other attributes to pop, such as architectural features or a beautiful front door. Grays and greiges are always sure to please! Some of the more popular neutral choices are: Edgecomb Gray HC-173, Revere Pewter HC-172 (the green undertones, make this an excellent choice for a tree-lined street), Gray Owl OC-52 and Pale Oak OC-20. If you like these colours, but are unsure of which one works best for you, booking an exterior colour consult is a great way to figure out what works best for your home.

As always, whites and off-whites continue to shine in popularity both interior and exterior. However, choosing the best white, or knowing if white is even the correct choice for you, is possibly one of the more difficult choices. If white is your style, then a colour consult will prove invaluable to you. For white to truly shine and add the clean neutral finish you are looking for you must consider some different factors. If you choose too crisp of a white with a blue undertone, it may look good at certain times of the day, depending on how much light your exterior is exposed too, but these whites can become unbearably bright! Whites with a yellow undertone tend to take on a soft country look. Usually whites with a green undertone work best, as they tend to be the most neutral.

Although, it is always nice to know what is currently trending in terms of colour, it’s also good to keep in mind what is trending in your neighborhood. You may want your house to pop, but you want that to be for the right reasons! The best inspiration may come from stepping outside. Select hues that are compatible with your neighborhood, architectural style and natural surroundings. For exterior colours inspired by classic American design and architecture, look no further than Benjamin Moore’s Historical Collection for tried and true favorites that are perfect for any home. Some of my favourite choices from this collection are:

Ashley Gray HC-87, as it’s a warm brown, with a nice gray undertone allowing it to veer away from becoming too brown

Chelsea Gray HC-168 (on the chip below) can come across as being quite dark, but with it’s LRV (light reflective value) of 22, it works great if your home is in a lot of shadow. Rather than highlighting the shadows and making your eye stop to notice the shadows, this colour absorbs shadows allowing your eye to take in the full beauty of your home.

Another thing that shouldn’t be overlooked is what elements are around your house that won’t change, such as roofing, architectural features or stone work. These are big elements and always a good place to start when building your home’s exterior colour palette. You want to make sure you are selecting the correct undertones, so that everything flows well together and you don’t get left feeling like something isn’t quite right!

The final thing to consider when choosing your new exterior is the finish of the paint.

Colour is only one aspect of an exterior paint choice; sheen is another important factor. Low Lustre finish is a top choice for the main siding colour—the low-reflective finish adds a slight gloss, hides surface imperfections and cleans well. Semi-gloss paints add extra durability and clean up easily, making them a good choice for areas such as windowsills that bear the brunt of weather shifts. High gloss finishes make colour look richer but magnifys surface imperfections.

If you’ve any questions, or want to enquire about hiring a colour consult, we’re here to help! Just call in for a coffee and a chat or connect with us by phone or email.

Aisling Ely studied Fine Art & Design at Limerick College of Art & Design in Ireland. She is available for colour consultations by appointment.

West Side Paint & Decorating
3354 Dunbar St, Vancouver BC V6S 2C1
Telephone 604-737-0962