Explore a brown exterior color palette that proves that brown doesn’t have to mean boring.
Choosing the perfect exterior paint colors can be the simplest way to transform your home. If you’re looking for a bold, dark, and moody exterior palette, brown exterior paint colors can give your home new life.
Brown exterior color schemes are popping up as a home color trend. But they’re not right for every house or every location.
In the project we’re featuring in today’s post, our client wanted a very dark color scheme for his historic Boston home.
We presented him with some gorgeous brown exterior color palettes as part of our All-In Exterior Consultation Package and helped him choose the brown house exterior palette that was right for his home.
Keep reading to learn more about how to choose your own exterior color palette and get inspired by our client’s home that proves that brown doesn’t have to be boring.
Choosing an Exterior Color Scheme
Whether you’re looking for a dark brown exterior color scheme or a more traditional look, choosing a palette isn’t as easy as picking some colors you like.
There are many things to consider when selecting colors. Some of the things we take into account when building palettes for our clients include:
Exterior Color Palette Considerations
- Geographic location: If you live in a high-altitude area (like Colorado) or a very sunny place (like Florida), very light colors can look too washed out. If you’re surrounded with lots of green foliage, it’s important to keep that in mind when choosing lighter colors that might reflect the green.
- The colors of your neighbors’ homes: Most of us don’t want a cookie-cutter house that looks just like the one next door. But you don’t want your house to look completely out of place, either. It’s also important to ensure your exterior won’t reflect the colors of your neighbor’s homes.
- HOA requirements: If your neighborhood has an HOA, it’s important to ensure your new palette will align with their guidelines and that you submit any proposed changes for approval. When you work with a color consultant, our full-color mock-ups make this process easy.
- Exterior finishes: If your home has brick or stone, it’s important to consider these elements when choosing exterior paint colors. You’ll need to find colors that go with your stone/brick or test colors to paint your brick if desired.
Keeping all of these factors in mind when choosing paint colors can be difficult. But when you work with a paint color consultant the process becomes a lot easier.
At the Color Concierge, our All-In Exterior consultation package includes three palettes with up to 5 paint colors in each one. Mood board mock-ups and detailed instructions on color placement for your trim, soffits, doors and more ensure you can easily update your home with new paint colors.
An optional add-on Photoshop rendering is a beautiful way to visualize the changes. Our Photoshop expert is an accomplished artist who brings your new palette to life on the screen.
How to Test Exterior Paint Colors
You should always sample and test your paint colors, but it’s especially important with exterior paint colors, which can look different in bright sunlight than they do on the page or screen.
The easiest way to sample any of these exterior paint colors (and any other paint color for that matter) is via SAMPLIZE. Their peel-and-stick paint samples are easy to use and true to color.
There is no mess, and the cost is less expensive than purchasing a sample and a white poster board. Since you don’t need to dispose of the paint, it’s also environmentally friendly!
With Samplize you can easily see how different shades look on your unique wall. Check out the SAMPLIZE website HERE. Get 10% off your Samplize order today by using the code “ColorConcierge10” at checkout. Order today and get samples tomorrow!
Project Spotlight: A Benjamin Moore Brown Exterior Color Scheme
This client’s historic home is located in Boston and was built in 1890. Its lines are simpler than you would expect from a home of this era, but it still had some beautiful architectural details that we wanted to highlight with new paint.
According to the homeowners, this home, built in 1891 is part of Boston’s architectural history. Designed by a locally famous architect Edwin Lewis, the home was built in the Shingle Style, which took equal inspiration from an English country house and a New England fishing shack – it’s got hints of Craftsman vibes too. it’s a piece of history, and very special!
The client originally requested a very dark and moody color palette. And while we gave him a dark brown exterior option, we also presented this rich and colorful rusty brown one. Their vision was a palette that is recognizably timeless and won’t be seen as part of a fad in a decade.
After seeing the options he decided the brighter brown color was the right direction (and we have to agree!). The rich, rusty color gives this house new life!
This gorgeous palette is a great way to use brown without it looking boring and, well, brown.
The Final Color Transformation
This brown exterior color palette uses Benjamin Moore Earthly Russet, a rich, rusty brown color, for the body shingles and siding.
Below is the house in the afternoon sun.
This home was transformed with these gorgeous paint colors and was finished around Halloween. The neighborhood kids said it wasn’t a spooky haunted house anymore!
The Original House – Before
This home was in major need of an exterior paint job. It featured very worn, chipping paint in a variety of colors including gray, brown and tan.
The Benjamin Moore Earthly Russet Exterior Color Scheme
When building this brown exterior color scheme, we wanted to choose a color that was still dark but would really light up in the sun. Carefully selected trim colors highlight all the unique architectural details of this home.
This palette is rich and stately and perfectly calls to the historic style of the home. The body of the home is painted with Benjamin Moore Earthly Russet, a warm brown paint color that looks much brighter outside. The photo below is in the evening.
It pairs beautifully with the home’s stone foundation.
This home also has a lot of green trees around it, and the rusty brown color looks rich and gorgeous next to all of the foliage.
The dark windows, painted with Benjamin Moore Night Shade, add a beautiful, bold element to the look.
Benjamin Moore Exterior Color Palette Placement
- BM Earthly Russet: Body shingles, siding, stair risers. Sample here.
- BM Providence Olive: Fascia, soffits, gutters, downspouts, trim, dentils, corbels, wall caps, handrails, porch ceiling beams, porch surrounding beams, side doors. Sample here.
- BM Night Shade: Window frames, posts. Sample here.
- BM Windsor Green: Front door. Sample here.
An Alternative Brown Exterior Color Scheme
While our client ended up choosing the brighter Earthly Russet exterior color palette, we did design a darker brown palette for this home as well.
This palette is a moody, sophisticated and elegant palette that uses Benjamin Moore Dragon’s Breath as the body color. This deep brown paint color has lots of gray in it to keep it muted.
I love the unique and intentional look of this palette. It pulls interesting colors together in a perfect way. Dragon’s Breath siding is paired with gorgeous deep red trim (Benjamin Moore Raphael) that adds the perfect amount of color to the look.
We used two lighter gray paint colors for the porch ceilings to lighten up the entryways to the house while still keeping the palette subdued.
Benjamin Moore Exterior Color Scheme Placement
- BM Dragon’s Breath: Body shingles, siding. Sample here.
- BM Raphael: Fascia, soffits, gutters, downspouts, trim, window frames, dentils, corbels, wall caps, handrails, posts, porch ceiling beams, porch surrounding beams, stair risers, exterior doors. Sample here.
- BM Brewster Gray: Side porch ceiling. Sample here.
- BM Rockport Gray: Optional front porch ceiling. Sample here.
Key Learning Points
Choosing the right exterior paint colors of your home is one of the biggest impacts you can make on its curb appeal. If you’re ready to start building your own exterior color scheme, don’t forget these important tips:
- Colors look 4-5 times lighter and more colorful outside than on the page or in the shade. Keep this in mind when choosing paint colors and always test in bright sunlight.
- Pay attention to the other colors in your neighborhood. You want your home to look unique without looking like it doesn’t belong. Make sure to not repeat your neighbor’s palettes and stay within any HOA rules you may need to follow.
- Don’t be afraid to try a pop of color. Using a bold trim color, a colorful front door or a painted front porch ceiling can be a really lovely look.
Don’t forget to always test your paint colors before painting your whole house! Whenever I test my paint colors, they are perfect, and when I don’t test they turn out wrong. Learn how to test your paint colors here.
Remember: NEVER, EVER use paint matches from a different brand than the one specified. Results are poor and there are no standards for the sheens. Even though your painter may truly believe it can be done, don’t do it. See results from paint matching here.
Online Color Consulting
Still, looking for the perfect paint color? Discover our Online Color Consulting Package.
If you liked this post, don’t forget to pin it!
Get an Expert-Made Exterior Paint Color Scheme
Don’t want to create a color palette by yourself? Contact The Color Concierge to learn more about our in-person and online paint color consultations.
Our All-In Exterior consults include three tailor-made color palettes, support with testing paint colors, one round of design edits and detailed color placement instructions you can hand off to your painter.
Click here to explore our exterior paint color consultation package.
We love your comments! Please note that the blog is meant as general advice, and it is not possible to give out specific answers to your paint questions. If you want more specific advice, please consider purchasing a color consultation. Thank you for your understanding.