Exterior ideas

Posted on Sun, 20 Feb 2011 by KiM

I am in panic mode now – my trip is less than a week away and I have hardly crossed off any items on my TO DO list. AH WELL. As a result I did not have time to travel around blogland looking for my favourite photos of the week to post today. Rather, I had to spend some time digging through my photo stash looking for photos of the exterior of homes because my architect emailed the other day wanting to know what we were thinking of (we’re replacing the ugly-ass siding on the existing house too so it will be a BIG job with a hefty price tag). I have no freaking clue what to tell him – all I know is because it’s pretty much 2 flat 2-story rectangles perhaps some of the windows could protrude a bit and at least 2 different materials could provide some visual interest. I have never had the opportunity to deal with the exterior of a home before so I figured we could just send him some photos of inspiration and he could figure something out for now. I narrowed it down to the photos below. If anyone has suggestions please feel free to leave them in the comments (plans we have so far for the new house are here).


Hillery Priest

Charles & Hudson

Hus & Hem

Buttrick Wong


Carl Dahlstedt

Elle Decor


Elle Decor Italy

environa studio

Johnston Architects

Wow, I just love black houses and that business pic from Hus & Hem really stands out for me. I also love the shot of the back of the grey stone house with the patio and large black framed opening. Those two ideas are versatile and can be easily changed, appeal to many people (resale) and look very modern with the right colors, etc. Although I love the the galvanized steel look and the wooden slats, I think it's getting a bit dated and could possibly pigeon hole you into one look that is hard to change once it's done. There are quite a few homes in Toronto that did the whole galvanized siding thing as well as the slats (which need staining/lacquering frequently) in the early 90s and, although they still look modern they also look tired. In my opinion, you can't go wrong with classic organic elements like wood and/or stone/brick. If it was me and I was spending all that money I'd make sure what I chose was timeless but also had the potential to look modern. Your house would look incredible done in clapboard with maybe some stone or painted brick alongside mucho blackness.

Looking forward to following your progress!

Loulou Ste-Adèle says:

First: I envy you! If I was to redo the exterior of my house, I would avoid trends. Then I would most probably use wood; stained cedar wood. Maybe I would somehow play with how it is installed, so it stays coherent but defines areas. Or my second choice, I would play on dark wood ans stained concrete. It is timeless and modern at the same time. If two finishes were chosen, I would make the rest very plain. If one finish was chosen, I would play with an outstanding window. You seem to like mid-century, eclectic and at the same time very modern. I would go subdued on the outside, as much coherent with the neighborhood as possible, and go all free in the inside! I will be interested in following your decisions. Louise

cinzia allocca says:

I love the mix of black and warm wood. However, I know canadian winters are harsh and wood is not the most ideal. maybe soe warm elements in anoter material.

Ruth says:

I just love that you want to do something bold! Smooth fiber cement board seems pretty versatile and if you get it factory painted in some sort of super duper quality, then less upkeep, eh? I also love that you see your house for what it is: a box! I agree with your instinct completely– celebrate the box, no ticky tacky taffy tackons! The Elle Decor photo is my favorite… it says yeah, I'm TWO boxes! Thanks again for sharing.

Sarah says:

We are in the middle or renovating and extending our 1880s cottage with the extension clad in black ecoply with huge anodised aluminium sliding glass doors. It looks amazing so far and we love it! I think you should stick with what you love and are always drawn back to ( black houses with glass and wood by the look of it) and in my opinion don't worry too much about resale. Someone one day will love your house and it only takes one buyer to fall in love with it and wham…. you have a sale!! I am so happy with our house and I can't stop looking at it and it isn't even finished! Good luck and trust yourself.

Bev65 says:

My birthday was 2/20 as well!

I love the mix of black and warm wood. However, I know Canadian winters are harsh and wood is not the most ideal. maybe soe warm elements in another material……………………………………………………….

Susan says:

I love the pictures you've collected! We live in Wisconsin. Our house addition is sided in galvanized corrugated metal, butting up against painted 150 year old wood siding

I like galvanized, it's vernacular to farm buildings here. it slowly changes to a flat gray over time, looks beautiful with summer greenery, or tree shadows playing across the ribs, and also beautiful in the winter. It's economical, and midwestern practical, but also looks contemporary.

Kim in Jersey says:

Lot to love here. Sorry, but the only thing I can add is "huh huh huh, 'Buttrick.'"

KiM says:

Thanks everyone for your thoughts and suggestions!!

Leave a Reply to The Vintage Cabin Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published.
Required fields are indicated by *