I'm actually not blending in with this house, and I've gone outside my comfort zone. My spouse's too. (It also may be a shock to your system, because I use a lot of grays and whites here. ) When we first moved here, there were only a few houses fixed, and most were a shade of beige or brown, a safe desert color, but brown is extremely dreary on these types of old houses. Fortunately, on these old houses there are no rules and no HOA. Then came the pink and white house, and it was so adorable. Well, I decided then to paint ours blue and white. But in addition to SW rain and SW Pure White, it now has accents of SW Lime Granita (a custom color, because it was an interior color, and the formula had to be changed to create the shade we wanted. So if you actually want to use it, you can ask me for the formula.) (I actually do love color.)
We added shutters, which are on most of the houses in the neighborhood. I could not find old ones, so these are custom made from either sustainable redwood or teak because they needed to be 59 inches. (Vinyl will disintegrate here.) In front of this window is our flowering cottage garden. It can't be seen from the street, because it is behind the grasses. It is a little sitting area under the tree, and someday when the tree has enough shade, I'm going to place a bench under it.
Now, the 71 year old house is cheerful, and it puts a smile on our faces when we see it from the street.
2.5 years ago
(The tree on the right was moved to the back and replaced.)
3 years ago
Everything was dead! You can't see it in this photo, but the front door had a jagged hole in it that someone made with an ax, and wrote in sharpie "mail here". We restored the giant corner windows, and when we replaced the roof, we restored the roof line with the tiles, moved the roof vents to the backside of the house, and used new energy efficient material. Around here, the attic is probably 30 to 40 degrees cooler in the summer with a white roof. (White roofs were common and still are on the old houses that have not been repaired.) The porch support was not original and probably from the 60s or 70s, and it had to be removed day one, because it was rusted through. See how drab it was.
When the shutters came in, it was my daughter that encouraged me to go beyond white. She selected three shades of green in sample cans, and then we painted canvases, which we leaned against the house in order to get an idea of how it would look. It's sort of a variegated agave color. You see there is a rhyme and reason to this choice.
Yes, it is very different from the back! I wanted the back peaceful and besides, I like white wood. On the front all the wood trim and the wooden carport are white. So I have a house with two blue sides, and 2 white sides, but the only one that knows is us and you. The concrete brick is blue except for in the back where it is white. The front is for us, but also for the neighborhood.
The Bell is the Doorbell
Now in our neighborhood, in addition to ours and the pink house, there is a yellow house, a sage green, a gray one with bright red trim, a mustard, a shamrock green with white, an orange and green one... and so on... The orange and green one is pretty cool, though it doesn't sound like it when I write it. Neighbors suddenly felt free to do something different. The original color of this house was mint green. How do I know? My daughter's wall in her closet was an outside wall, because at some point her room was an addition, and the once outside wall is an interior wall and it was mint. (But we had the blue paint already.)
My spouse rebuilt the companion Adirondack chair to the other, because they were retrieved rotted from a dumpster pile.
Now, you might be thinking where are the cacti? These are all drought tolerant plants, and I have no cacti in the front. I personally don't like cacti in front of old houses, unless they are Spanish or mid century modern. It's not that I don't love cacti; it's just that they are sculptural and not, soft. I wanted grass, but a lawn won't grow, because we are too close to the mountain, but ornamentals will. These do not seed, so they do not spread. (Some do spread, so you need to check before choosing.) If you want to make more of them, you have to separate them. And depending on the lighting and time of day there is a lot of cranberry in them.
It's a very simple home, nothing fancy, but small and sweet and it makes us want to eat macaroons and sit at the beach. Vibrant colors are pretty on certain older desert homes, mid-centuries, and more modern/contemporary ones.
Later this week, I will show you the wreath(s) we made. One is outside.
Thanks for visiting.