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How do you decide on an exterior colour?

Choosing a colour palette for the exterior of your home is often harder than choosing your internal colour scheme. Your colour selections will make a first impression. Get it right and you’ll be able to conceal features you want to hide, and, highlight those you want to amplify.

How to start

Take inspiration from your surroundings. Are you surrounded by nature? Are you in a heritage listed area and restricted by council regulations? Study your neighbourhood, do you want to stand out or blend in? You don’t need to match your neighbour exactly, but you can be influenced by their colour selections.

What can and can’t be changed?

If you are renovating, there will be features on your home that can’t be changed with a lick of paint, or if they can, it will be expensive. Features such brickwork and your roof will be costly to change with colour so have a good think about how to work with these existing features. You will also need to consider the age and style of your home.

Think beyond ten years

Repainting the exterior of your home is a maintenance job that is often done every 10 years or so. While mustard yellow was popular in the 90’s it isn’t so chic in 2018. Choose a colour palette that has longevity.

Here are three colour palettes that will stand the test of time:


Soft pastel colours are a proven formula for home exteriors. Pastels will suit a range of homes from modern to heritage. Muted pastels (blues, greys and greens) paired with crisp white trims will withstand the test of time and are particularly suited to weatherboard homes. Ensure you have a distinct colour change between the trim and the rest of the home to ensure features stand out. And you know what I am going to say next… add an element of surprise with a coloured front door!


More dramatic than pastels, monochrome colour palettes are bold, daring and dark. A simple black and white theme is modern, clean and will deliver high impact street appeal. To ensure the right look is achieved, your dark colour should be the block colour of the house with the white applied to the trim. Think of dark charcoals and greys for a less dramatic look. Soften it further with stone accents and timber features.

Earthly tones

Take inspiration from our wonderful country and look for sage greens, timber, rich browns and earthly hues. Complete the look with layers, stone features, and brick to add interest. This colour scheme is warm and inviting and easy on the eye.

A golden rule to remember is only to use 3 or 4 colours whilst also considering your roof, driveway and other features that can’t be changed.

♥ KC.

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You might like this blog post – Painted brick facade ideas.



  1. Reply


    July 29, 2018

    Hi Katrina, must tell you my exterior paint story. Seven years ago we built a new house and arranged for the builder to paint the weather boards in ‘Indiscretion’ which was a lovely soft green/grey. I had put a lot of work into the colours taking in to account undertones, setting etc. We arrived at the site one evening after work to find it the house house painted a pink/beige. Needless to say I burst into tears. The wash up was that the painter had heard ‘Indecision’ as opposed to ‘Indiscretion’. Lesson number one order paint by the number and not by the name. Fortunately the name of the correct paint was in writing so not my fault.

    • Reply


      July 30, 2018

      Oh what an awesome tip Alison! That would have been such a shock, omg!!

  2. Reply


    July 31, 2018

    Katrina- do you know what colour the pastel house is by any chance?

    • Reply

      Amy Perkins

      February 23, 2019

      I’d like to know this too!!