We bought our house in the snowy winter months and I think it hid some of the fading and peeling of the exterior, or maybe time has just caught up with us. The cedar shakes are dirty, fading, chipping in spots, and need new life. This is particularly true on the front, garage, and south-facing side wall. The trim also needs a fresh coat of paint.

Last summer, we requested quotes for our exterior. Overall, there are not many painters in my area who were even willing to give us a quote. One of the bigger painting companies said they do not paint any homes older than 1970s. Another painter came for a quote and then never actually sent it. We did receive one quote from someone touted as “affordable,” and it was a bit higher than I expected based on the painter’s portfolio and quality. We are still investigating painters but in the meantime, we are also investigating tips to do this ourselves, in our “free” time (you know, that half hour period between putting the baby down and the sun still being up! ha!). So, what I am doing now regardless is trying to pick a paint/stain type and color.

I am hoping to find a color that is a grey but with a blue/green undertone similar to the current exterior. In a perfect situation, it would somewhat blend in as we take our time painting. Some of my inspiration:

Via Houzz

My first batch of samples came from Sherwin Williams, and includes:

  1. Acacia Haze
  2. Illusive Green
  3. Mineral Deposit
  4. Unusual Gray

I painted the samples on wood boards and have been walking around the exterior with them at different times of day and trying to find example photos online. I also made some mock-ups in photoshop. If you want to join along on the color hunt, continue on! 😉

Acacia Haze

Acacia Haze is the most colorful choice I sampled–it could probably been categorized as a green although fairly muted. It most closely resembles the first of my inspiration photos and blends quite nicely with the current color of the house. That being said, I am probably least “sold” on this option. It may just be too pea green for me, as I would like the house to be more grey than it is now.

Here is the sample against the current trim in different areas:

Acacia Haze along the front door
Acacia Haze by the garage door
Acacia Haze Mockup

Illusive Green

This color is definitely a front contender, but I cannot decide if it is too dark for my liking. Or too moody. It seems to be lighter than the garage and back of the house, but a bit darker than the faded siding on the front.

(Illusive Green on right. Sample on left is what I believe to be existing color used on garage and touch ups)
(Photo shows Illusive Green on a house, photo sent by a kind Instagram user who I reached out to)

This color really seems to transform depending on the light source and time of day. The person who sent me sample photos said she gets asked all the time if it is green, blue, or grey. So, yes, I think that is what I am going for but something has made me hesitate from pulling the trigger!

Unusual Grey

The last color from my current top runners is unusual gray. I like that it is a bit light, still a nice grey, with some green/blue undertones. The mock-up looks nice to me too. However, this color has a light base, and I am a bit worried it will be too drastic of a difference as we take our time painting.


So, this is where my mind is currently with paint colors. I will say, I do love a warmer grey on a house, but I am trying to keep with the existing tone so it is not too drastic as we take on this project ourselves, which may span months. I think I need to try a few more samples, perhaps even painted in large squares on the actual house to test it (yikes), and maybe open my mindset a bit.

If you have any color suggestions or opinions feel free to share. Thanks!

5 thoughts on “It’s Time to Paint Our Exterior

  1. What color did you decide on? I really liked your original gray/green but I don’t think you knew the name of the color but I like your taste.


    1. Hi! Shutters are from the previous owner and actually a flat dark navy that we intended to change to black so not very helpful 🙂 trim is simply white by Benjamin Moore


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