Curb Appeal

I’ve been checking out quite a few books from the library on exterior improvements and curb appeal. Being a native Iowan, I am a little confused about my personal inclination toward bright, bold, exterior paint colors. Apparently, the approved exterior home colors for the midwest are taupe, taupe, and more taupe. Per Sherwin Williams: “In the nation’s heartland, creams, whites and light beiges are the rule for exterior siding, while window trim, shutters and entry doors wear coats of deep burgundy or forest green. Why? Like New England, this is an area where tradition dominates, so color choices swing toward the conservative shades of the spectrum. Light neutrals blend well in virtually any neighborhood, and provide a calm canvas for the green foliage and multicolored landscaping so popular in residential communities. Light neutrals also echo the shades of wheat, corn and other farm crops that are the heart of the heartland.”

I say hell no to this. I don’t like cream or beige or forest green. Give this girl something in the goldfinch palette, and call it done. One of the many books I’ve been perusing said that when your friends drive down your street, they should know which house is yours. Maybe I just lack creativity, but I’m not sure how you jazz up neutrals so your friends will recognize your abode among the sea of tans, browns and taupes. I’ve never been one to follow the pack, so it’s not much of a surprise that I don’t feel constrained by the limited socially acceptable color options.The irony of my exterior paint color choice is that the goldfinch is the state bird of Iowa. Maybe its time for Midwesterners to look to their natural wildlife instead of row crops for inspiration…..


With my color rant out of the way, I’ll move into other curb appeal measures I’ve started taking. Almost any house can be drastically cute-ified by adding a simple window flower box. I had researched and planned to make my own boxes out of cedar planks, but after visiting my local menards and comparing the price between cedar boards and pre made boxes, I saved myself a few hours and about $30 by skipping the DIY. I bought some white paint, added a few coats to the boxes and installed them using “L” shelf brackets. Once they were up, I added some details using light blue paint (and a touch of red) that I am hoping will accent the soon-to-be-painted gold siding. Next on the docket – shutters.

I should mention that I didn’t go crazy with installing things on my exterior and choosing gusto gold paint without a little preparation. Thank goodness for the library, photoshop and tons of house pictures on the fab internet for helping me draft my makeovers. Friends, I hope you recognize my house when you drive by.


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