Going Gray, Looking Great!

Gray is beautiful. Whether on the silvery locks of a woman or the unique weathered gray blend on a designer roof, gray is in.

Diana Lewis Jewell, author of the book "Going Gray, Looking Great!" believes that gray is the color that gives women confidence. She also thinks that the "confidence building color" can extend to the home, so we decided to gain her perspective on "going gray" for the home.

Q: How much do you think a personal style can be translated to a home exterior?

A: A sense of personal style gives a woman character, grace and beauty. And, this does translate to a home. A woman's personal touch is always in it, whether on the interior or exterior.

Q: You prefer to refer to gray as "silver" ... so tell us about your thoughts of "a touch of silver" on the roof.

A: I see no reason why the roofing tile on a home can't correspond with the silver in your hair. I love the range of silver shades offered by DaVinci Roofscapes. Gray hair comes in so many shades .. and I see this reflected in the many shades of silver offered by DaVinci for the roof too! As we know, silver hair is sexy, gorgeous and strong ... now I see you can get those same qualities in a designer roof!

Q: What type of attitude does a person have who has accepted and embraced their gray hair?

A: The person who has gray hair has to be open to life ... to change ... and to accepting whatever stage of gray they're in. You know, silvery gray is now a trend among the very young, too. And while they have to bleach out their hair to achieve silver streaks, some folks get it naturally!

Q: Is gray a passing fad?

A: Absolutely not. We have more than 10,000 women subscribers at our site www.cafe-gray.com. These are returning fans of silver/gray hair ... and I've got to believe that their love of gray translates to other areas in their lives, such as color accents for the home, silver jewelry and yes, even roofs!



What Colorful Exteriors Say About You

What Colorful Exteriors Say About You
Image from bigstock.com

Over the years as I've worked with hundreds of homeowners I have found that people will often pick colors for their home exteriors that reflect something about their own personality. Different "pops of color" can tell passersby a good deal about your personality.

What do the colors of your home's exterior say about you? Here are the personality traits most often associated with these popular colors used as main or accent colors on a home exterior:

Green --- boasts that you have traditional values, are down to earth, well-balanced and nurturing.

Blue --- tells people that you are relaxed, at ease, sincere and even a bit conservative.

Orange --- says that you are friendly, assertive, adventurous and optimistic.

Brown --- shows that you are honest, approachable, sturdy, reliable and wholesome.

Yellow --- reveals that you are cheerful, a leader or organizer, and that you have a modern, open outlook.

Red --- expresses a confident nature where you like to be the center of attention and sometimes exhibit signs of impulsiveness.

Purple --- discloses that you are a "free spirited" person who is comfortable taking risks and dreaming big.


Whatever color you have chosen for your exterior DaVinci Roofscapes has the perfect color for your roof. With 50 nature-inspired colors to choose from you are sure to find a combination that reflects your personality.

Does your home show your true colors? Leave a comment and let me know.


National Curb Appeal Month


We're right in the middle of National Curb Appeal Month, so it's a great time to think about how your home can make a powerful first impression on visitors.

The infographic below shows 10 ways to consider adding curb appeal to your home. Not surprisingly, starting at the top with your roof is the first recommendation! (see "Top Down" Color Message from Kate Smith)


The team at DaVinci Roofscapes recommends looking at your entire home as a "palette" for adding color and highlighting special accents on your house exterior. Starting with a blend of colors in our polymer roofing products is especially easy when you use our Color Designer Tool online to get started.

If you're in the market to sell your home, you might want to know that "great design/curb appeal" was the number one answer builders provided to the question of "what are the most important issues among your buyers with regards to the home exterior?" That means potential buyers of YOUR home could be gazing up at your designer roof all the way down to your landscaping to decide if they wish to step in the door and see your home!


Simulated Slate Roofing Chosen Over Cedar Shakes

Homeowner Jill Bybee was faced with a challenge. Her 14-year old cedar shake roof had to go.

Designer Roof"We knew we wanted and needed a product that would meet our insurance company's standards and would be accepted by our Architectural Review Committee," says Bybee, who lives in St. Albans, Missouri.

Working with Cardinal Contractors, Bybee had DaVinci Roofscapes color samples made and installed on her roof to determine how the color blends would work with her stone and brick Country French home exterior. At the same time, her family decided to switch from cedar roof shingles to an imitation slate roof from DaVinci.

"We liked the appearance of the synthetic slate as it looks very authentic," says Bybee. "The warranty on the product, its maintenance-free qualities and the color selections all impressed us. We like the way our custom blended slate looks on our roof as it enhances our house and the beauty of it with a quiet stateliness and elegance."

Bybee selected four shades of Autumn to create the unique blend for her simulated slate roofing. She has positive things to say about both her new designer roof and the team that installed it.

"Working with Aaron Wallis was a great experience," says Bybee. "I am truly amazed at his professionalism and his dedication to his job, his projects, and his customers. I would highly recommend Aaron to anyone looking for a referral. And, we've heard that one of our neighbors is considering the same color blend for their DaVinci roof!"

Is a custom roofing tile color in your future? See 3 Reasons A Custom Color Could Be The Best Choice For Your Project.


Need A Color Recommendation

Could you provide a color recommendation?

Frank Gable
Reading, PA
Product: Single Width Slate



Dear Mr. Gable,

There are a few options for color in the Single-Width DaVinci Slate that would work well on your home. You could stay with a brighter color similar to what you have now by going with Sonora-VariBlend.

While I like the colorful roof a subtler color would be more versatile in opening up many options for main and accent colors for your home over the long life of the roof.

Brownstone-VariBlend is one option I like. The warm tones work well with the existing colors and the surroundings.

Slate Gray-VariBlend would be another option. It works with any color, is a medium tone and has the natural look of a roof that could have been used originally on your style of home.

With the classic look of your home you really can't go wrong with any of the colors available. These are just a couple of choices I like but if you are leaning in another direction I wouldn't hesitate to go with the color that speaks to you.


Kate Smith
DaVinci Roofscapes Color Expert

Slate Alternative


Colorful Roofs of France

Slate Tile RoofIf you travel to France, forget about the tastes, smells and sights ... instead, look up at the colorful tile roofs!

Old ceramic and slate tiles in France are a patchwork of color. From unique turrets with bright and bold zig-zag patterns to the famous kaleidoscope roof on the Hotel-Dieu in Beaune, France is a spectacular site for roof lovers. Even the older well-worn designer roofs with their faded concrete and cement tiles have a charming appeal in France.

If you'd like to incorporate some of that charm and color into your own luxury roof, contact us at DaVinci Roofscapes. We now offer 50 standard colors for our synthetic shake and simulated slate roofing. And, the really good news is that the colors are manufactured throughout each piece, so you don't have to worry about fading over time from the sun's powerful rays.

Need help deciding on the best polymer roofing color combination for your home? Then click HERE to download our free FRESH Color Schemes for Your Home exterior e-book ... or visit our Color Designer tool online to create a unique color blend of composite roofing that's perfect for your home!

Don't see a color you love out of our 50? Then check out 3 Reasons A Custom Color Could Be The Best Choice For Your Project and come up with your very own color of roof tiles for your roof!


Can't Decide on Color - What Do You Recommend?

We are going to have Bellaforté roofing put on but can't decide on color. Can you suggest one? We are thinking about Sabino, but not sure.

John Hardison
Missouri Valley, IA
Product: Bellaforté



Dear Mr. Hardison,

The choice you are leaning towards -- Bellaforté Slate in Canyon-VariBlend (formerly Sabino) -- would work well on your home. The color of the brick in the picture looks like it would blend nicely with the variety of tones in the roof. Since the color is not always true in a photograph when shared online please confirm that this is true by looking at a sample of the roofing tiles alongside the brick color of your home. Stand back towards the front of your property and view the colors together in daylight. 

Gray as you have now could work, too. However, I would suggest a slightly different tone -- Slate Gray as a better match to your brick.

Replacing the roof with Bellaforté Slate will have a big impact on updating the look of your exterior. Replacing the porch supports with clean square columns would also fresh up your home and be a better match for the sturdy more substantial look of your new slate roof.


Kate Smith
DaVinci Roofscapes Color Expert

Polymer Slate


Contest Winner Uses Color to Shake Up Home Exterior

Just look how color and dedication can transform a home!

Shake it Up Contest Winner

Rachel Delgado, winner of the 2015 Shake it Up Exterior Color Contest sponsored by DaVinci Roofscapes (see Virginia Homeowner Wins $2,500 in National DaVinci Roofscapes “Shake it Up” Exterior Color Contest) has already put her winnings to good use. She invested her $2,500 cash grand prize from the contest to change the exterior of her home.

In her entry, Delgado said she has always dreamed of having her home painted a bright barn red. Now she's made her dream come true!

"It's done (for now)!" says Delgado. "We hope to top it off with a new roof next year, but we've already shaken it up with color. It really came a long way and we couldn't have done it without you! Thank you so much!"

When she's ready to add her new roof, DaVinci will be here to help. Kate Smith, chief color maven with Sensational Color and a judge in the contest, suggested that Delgado use a Tahoe blend polymer shake DaVinci roof to complement her chosen barn red exterior.

"I want to shake up my home by going with an urban farm/rustic chic theme," says Delgado. "Our first priority was to purchase the red paint color recommended as part of the artist rendering to help transform the home exterior. After that we focused on the new porch. Finally, the wish list will be complete in a few years when we can top off our 'new' home with the recommended DaVinci roof!"

Delgando Porch


The Art of Synthetic Slate Roof Tile Color

Slate Quarry - Natural Slate Inspired Colors for Synthetic Slate Roof Tile
The beauty of slate can be seen at the Dinorwic Slate Quarry. Image from bigstock.com

When I'm not putting my color expertise to work professionally I can often be found sitting at my easel mixing oil colors and dabbing them onto a canvas in hopes of creating a pleasing landscape. My goal is to create a painting that looks as amazing as the scene that inspired me is to want to paint it. Good drawing skills are important but what makes a painting realistic is being able to recreate the colors of each object I see as closely as possible to how they appear in nature.

This is known as local color. Artlex.com  - the online art dictionary - defines local color as:

"The true color of an object or a surface as seen in typical daylight, rather than its color as seen through atmosphere or interpreted by the taste or imagination of the artist. Thus the characteristic local color of a lemon is yellow."

Seeing the local color of an object and all of its nuances takes keen observation but the final result is well worth the effort. Getting the colors right makes the painting not just beautiful but also believable.

When the team wanted to develop realistic colors for the DaVinci Slate line of products they thought like artists. Looking at the local color of natural slate and closely observing how the colors naturally blend one into another inspired the proprietary DaVinci VariBlend® technology. VariBlend creates a continuous variation from tile to tile which results in a beautiful natural blend.

Available in a full spectrum of authentic colors the natural beauty of slate has been brought to life in DaVinci Slate to provide a solution to the cost and expense of natural slate to property owners all over the globe.  The entire range of color has been artfully put together to give you the beauty of natural slate enhancing the realistic appearance of your roof. DaVinci Slate is not only aesthetically beautiful but also durable and therefore not only protects but enhances the value of your home.

Take a look at all of the nature-inspired colors and I'm sure you will find a perfect match for your homes color and style. If you are not sure about the right colors for the roof of your home let us help. At DaVinci Roofscapes, we can answer all your questions. If you would like help in knowing what color would best suit your home, please feel free to get in touch with one of our Project Specialists or Color Consultant to get advice on what would look ideal.


Need Color Assistance for our Home and our Neighborhood Association

Our Neighborhood Association just approved DaVinci for the 17 homes in our development when the roofs are replaced. All homes currently have wood shingle roofs of varying ages. My neighbor and I will be the first to replace our existing roofs. We need help selecting the specific product, installation pattern, and color, which will most closely resemble our existing roofs, and look best on our homes. I've attached 3 pics of my home (front and rear) as well as 2 pics of neighboring homes. Thank you.
Omaha, Nebraska
Product: Multi-Width Shake or Bellaforté Shake




Dear Mr. Hergott,

It is great news that your Homeowner's Association (HOA) has approved DaVinci Roofscapes products for all homes. As one of the first to select your roof type and colors you will be an example for your neighbors to refer to as others in your neighborhood replace their roofs so it is important for us to guide you on making a great selection.

I looked at all of the pictures that you sent of both homes in the development. It looks like the original cedar have changed in color as they have aged to brownish gray and the shakes are not as even as they once were. With the DaVinci product these are two concerns you will not have in the future. The color and look will remain basically the same for the life of the roof.

Since that is the case if you like the look of the aged shakes over how they looked when they were brand new then that is the look you will want to go for. I prefer the aged look for the homes in your neighborhood over the new cedar because it appears to me that the new cedar would not have enough contrast to the color of the bricks. Worry less about matching the existing color per se and more about finding a color that has a similar feel that you can love for many years to come.

My first thought is to go with either a Multi-Width or Bellaforté tile in Weathered Gray. This color has the warm look of aged wood. The Bellaforté has a bolder texture where the Multi-Width can be installed straight or staggered depending on the amount of texture/pattern desired. 

If you prefer a deeper tone on the roof then a second option is Tahoe. Tahoe is darker and more brown in color than the weathered gray. It would give you more contrast between your roof and main color of the home(s) but it would still blend into the surroundings nicely.

In either case you will want to view the actual colors in outside of your home to get a true idea of how they are going to look before making your final decision.


Kate Smith
DaVinci Roofscapes Color Expert

Fake Cedar Shake


Picking A Perfect Color Scheme For Your European Style Home

If you are wondering about the best way to choose colors for your home exterior then I have some great news for you. I've taken my years of experience choosing colors for hundreds of homes and put it into easy to follow steps for you to download for FREE in the DaVinci Roofscapes Color Designer. 

Colonial Home Drawing

In my first ebook FRESH Home Exterior Colors: 5 Steps for Finding the Perfect Hues for Your Home I introduce you to my FRESH approach for picking your colors in five steps.

In the second ebook FRESH Color Schemes for Your Home Exterior I provide step-by-step color guidance for seven different home styles. You will see how I use a “top down” approach, giving you insights on adding eye-pleasing color palettes to your home exterior starting with the roof, then working your way down to consider your siding, window frames, front door and trim. As you see how I create these looks you will quickly learn how to do the same for your home.

Here is an example of selecting a color scheme for the European-style home you see above rendered with the suggested colors. Just as you will do for your own home, I considered each part of "FRESH", the homeowner's like and dislikes, their personal style and vision they had for their home. These are the steps I took for this home. You can see examples of the other six styles in FRESH Color Schemes for Your Home Exterior.

The existing polymer slate roof is the Brownstone blend, which has a range of light to dark tones of brown. Copper accent roofing over three windows on the home complements the Brownstone blend and starts to bring color down the home’s exterior.

A mix of fixed features such as stone and brick are often found on European-style home. This home has Antique White Old World Ledgestone and Nassau Full Range Brick. Both have a reddish brown colorcast.

When an exterior has several textures and patterns as this home does, the main color usually looks best if it is in the same tones as the fixed features rather than in a contrasting color. Antique White blends with the features rather than competing with them for attention.

Good designs do not give equal importance to every element. Instead the designer focuses attention on one or two features and allows the other elements to provide support. Think of your home exterior in the same way as you choose your colors and materials. Plan your colors so that one or two of the best features stand out.

Use this same philosophy when selecting window or trim colors. Unless you want to highlight the windows or trim look for a color that adds to a cohesive overall look. For this home Chocolate Brown vinyl windows and Barista Brown painted urethane trim were the perfect choices to extend the color of the home throughout the exterior.

Often European-style homes sport a rustic, stained or painted door with prominent hardware. In staying with the natural feel created by the stone, brick and stucco, a door stained Mahogany was a good fit.

Finally step back and ask yourself, "Is Any Other Color Needed?"

Look carefully at your home. Make note of which of the colors you have selected will be applied to each architectural detail of the exterior. Is there an area of the exterior that you haven’t chosen a color for? On a European style home the many textures and tonal variations often complete the look without the addition of accent or other colors. Once you've looked at the entire home and selected the colors for each element following my FRESH approach, congratulate yourself...

Now you see how easy it can be to find the perfect colors for your home exterior. If you haven't already downloaded the download for FREE ebooks in the DaVinci Roofscapes Color Designer go do that right now. Then make sure to stop back here over the next few weeks as I share more of my experience and insights on choosing exterior colors.


Need Help with Color Blends for Our Home

Having a hard time picking a color as they seem to look different on paper than they do on the website. Could you look at our picture of the house and recommend a color or color blend. I am liking the blend of dark mountain, dark tan, but could really appreciate your suggestion for this style of house.

Janet O'Brien
Whittier, CA
Product: DaVinci Slate Single-Width



Dear Ms. O'Brien,

You are on the right track with the color blends you like for your home.

I recommend that you look at DaVinci Roofscapes Multi-Width Shake in Mountain and Tahoe. The Mountain blend is darker and more brown/gray. The Tahoe is slightly lighter and more brown. The Tahoe will be closer to how the roof currently appears to me in your photos.

Either color blend will work well on your home. Look at the colors against your home in the light and determine which you prefer with the main and trim color of your home as well as which you think fits in best with the natural surroundings.


Kate Smith
DaVinci Roofscapes Color Expert

Fake Cedar Shake


Countdown to National Curb Appeal Month

Summertime and the living is easy ... especially if you have low-maintenance products and sustainable roofing on your home!

With the launch of the Second Annual "National Curb Appeal Month" in August, the team at DaVinci Roofscapes reminds you that adding easy-care composite roofing to your home is a smart decision.

Designer RoofAccording to the 2015 Cost Versus Value Study conducted by Remodeling magazine, investments in a variety of exterior home improvement projects on a midrange priced home can have solid return-on-invest for homeowners. The study reports that a roof replacement can have a projected 71.6 percent cost versus value recoup.

If you're going to make home improvement enhancements during National Curb Appeal Month, color expert Kate Smith has some tips.

"Strategically placed 'pops of color' on a home exterior can make a huge difference in creating positive curb appeal," says Smith with Sensational Color. "Whether it's window boxes filled with bright red geraniums, a front door painted colonial blue or trim pieces in a striking deep green, colorful accents can really help a home stand out in the neighborhood.

"My advice is to add 'top down' color to the home to gain a cohesive and appealing exterior. Start with the color of your designer roof, then work your way down to the siding, trim, doors and landscaping. The colors should all complement each other. Even if you have a sedate color scheme, there's nothing wrong with shaking up a home with a warm, welcoming color on the front door and colorful landscaping."

Need more colorful polymer roofing details? Click HERE to get two free ebooks written by Smith, "FRESH Home Exterior Colors" and "FRESH Color Schemes for Your Home Exterior." And, check out 20 Sure Fire Ways To Create Curb Appeal for more ideas!


So Many Color Options... What Do You Think?

We are trying to decide what color would look best on this house of the DaVinci Slate options. We like the darker colors, and are leaning towards Slate Black. What do you think?

Allyn Weddle
Manhattan, KS
Product: DaVinci Slate - Bellaforté or Multi-Width


Dear Mr. Weddle,

A DaVinci Roofscapes Slate roof would be great on your home and a darker color would be a good choice.

I recommend the Single-Width profile in either Slate Black-VariBlend or Smokey Gray-VariBlend. The gray/black tones are a good match and subtle shift in color will work well with the stone on your home.

When it comes time to update the other exterior elements on your home look for shades or the colors you like that are slightly toned down or have a gray cast.


Kate Smith
DaVinci Roofscapes Color Expert

Fake Slate


Help with Roof Color

What would be the best color?

Bellevue, WA
Product: Bellaforté


Dear Mr. Mitchel,

For your home I am recommending that you use roofing that is brown to blend with the warm tones in your brick and be similar to the look you have now. Tahoe-VariBlend will be lighter and closer to the look of new shakes. Mountain-VariBlend is darker, more gray and will be closer to the current color.

Your current roof looks like a single-width shake and that would be a good choice for a replacement. To give the roof a slightly different look you could change to the Multi-Width product or Bellaforté Shake.

Alternately, you could successfully use the Slate profile in a brown tone or change to one in the gray color family.

The key for your home is that the roof cannot compete with the pattern in your brick. For this reason a blend with tiles from different color families would not be the best choice. Instead use a roof that is more of a single color with any changes in color looking like the subtle variations you would find in any natural material. This is where the VariBlend technology shines in giving you that look within the range of tiles.

I realize this is not giving a single choice but you have many DaVinci Roofscapes options that would work wonderfully on your home. Just follow the guidelines and pick the color you like best.


Kate Smith
DaVinci Roofscapes Color Expert

Polymer Roof Tiles


3 Reasons A Custom Color Could Be The Best Choice For Your Project

As the color expert for DaVinci Roofscapes I have had the opportunity to give hundreds of roof color recommendations. Most homeowners and contractors prefer the authentic colors and natural textures of quarried slate, hand-split cedar or machine-sawn shakes that DaVinci offers. With 50 standard colors available, I rarely find that I need to suggest custom color polymer roofing tiles. Still there are times when a custom color or blend is the perfect solution. Here are three times a custom color would be the best choice:

Matching An Existing Color

BELLAFORTE SLATE custom poymer tile roof

When you are trying to match an existing or unique color customizing your roofing is often the best answer. Jupiter Ocean Grande condo community in Jupiter, Florida needed a roof that matched the original color of their metal roof that had begun to rust and fade within just a few years of installation. Now the condo is topped with the same color as the original roof but with polymer Bellaforté Slate tiles that will stand up to the salt-laden air, wind, and rain of the Florida coast.

Replicating A Historic Roof Design

Older homes often used many colors arranged in patterns on their roofs. This another instance where creating a custom color or arrangement of colors can be your best choice.

BELLAFORTE SLATE custom poymer tile roof

When homeowners Carol and Ray Knoff were ready to replace the roof on their 111-year-old Queen Anne style home they knew exactly what they wanted. They wanted to recreate 300-year-old roof tile in a synthetic roofing material. 

The Knoffs chose to work with DaVinci Roofscapes and were not disappointed. “The DaVinci team worked with us to develop a color combination of Midnight Gray and Cottage Red for our Bellaforté Slate polymer tiles that really ‘pops’ and gives a positive first impression of our home while helping define the roof lines and architectural style,” says Knoff.''

Another example of how DaVinci slate was used to create a historic look is the Darocha's home. This homeowner selected DaVinci’s Single-Width Slate polymer tiles to complement the historic look of her home. She created a custom blend of colors for the roof, combining the European-VariBlend of dark purple plus light, medium and dark gray slate tiles with black tiles.

“I wanted the black added in to the roof so it would gain more attention,” says Darocha. “The unique mixture of the five color shades looks terrific and very historically accurate on the structure.”

Creating A Roof That Is You-nique

Inspired by their love of warm earth-tone colors and touches of safari-themed items found inside their home, Jack and Angie Craig transformed the outside of their colonial-style house with stand-out paint colors and a custom-color roof design created by DaVinci Roofscapes and Epic Exteriors.

The four earthy colors of polymer roofing tiles were staggered on the Craig's roof to create an inspiring pattern. By using a custom blend of Light Clay, Medium Light Autumn, Medium Autumn and Black, the homeowners were able to make an exterior design statement with their roof that reflected their personalities.

Is A Custom Color Right For You?

Are you thinking about a custom color for your home or building? See more examples of custom color roofing solutions and the answer to some of the most frequently asked questions about creating custom color roofing.


From the Architect's Corner - Free Online Learning

Have you ever wondered what a color expert would tell you if you asked the question, "What order should I go in when selecting exterior colors for my home?"

According to Kate Smith, DaVinci Roofscapes' color expert, the correct order is roof, siding, windows, front door, trim then garage door. Unless the home is brick or stone, the largest fixed feature is probably the roof, so you will want to start there. 

Interested in learning more? Are you a professional in need of a continuing education credit? Jump over to AEC Daily's website to take our course, The FRESH Approach to Choosing Exterior Colors. It is free and available online 24/7.


Happy Friday, Architects! 


Shake It Up Color Contest Winner

The dream of earning a college diploma came true for this Virginia homeowner earlier this year. Now a second dream has become a reality for Ms. Delgado. She is the grand prize winner in the 2015 Shake It Up Color Contest. Please join me in sending her a big, colorful congratulations!!


Fake Shake Roof


I hope she enjoys remodeling her home and that her new look inspires you as you think about improvements for your own home. Below I give you the top down approach to creating Ms. Delgado's winning look.

When thinking about making improvements to the outside of a home, my approach is to create an cohesive look and I encourage you to do the same when making changes to your exterior. By thinking about the essential elements that create a home's overall appearance and style it will make the selection process for products and color easier.

Let's take a look at the thought process I used in picking colors and materials for this year's winner.  If you follow this same type of process you will be able to make your design decision like a pro.

The smaller size of this cute cottage style home coupled with the homeowner's desire for a rustic look make the DaVinci Multi-Width Shake a great fit. The tiles are the right size and the uneven rows offer a contrast to the straight, even lines of the siding. Almost any color available would have worked on this home. Keeping in mind that I would be looking for a barn red for the siding I chose rich Tahoe for the roof color.

Many times a home has other elements or fixed features that need to be taken into consideration when choosing the color scheme. These would be things like brick, stone or existing roofing. This home didn't have any other elements I needed to keep in mind as I moved forward developing the color scheme.

On an exterior red can go bright very quickly. To tame the color and fit with the rustic chic style requested I chose cottage red. It is a deep red with a touch of brown. This color will give the home a big personality without shouting out too loudly -- "I'm red!"

To show off the new Fypon trim and railings, I wanted white trim but a cool, bright white would be to stark a contrast. Cloud white is toned down just enough to work well with cottage red.

The missing front door on the porch was replaced with Therm-Tru Classic-Craft Canvas Collection door. I considered a door with a pretty doorlight but because this home has windows all across the front a solid door was a better choice.

For the front door I could have gone with a color not seen elsewhere on the home -- blue, green, or teal could work -- but I liked the way it looked to continue the brown down to the front door. To find the right paint color I looked at the tones in the roof and then found a rich, medium brown that blended with the shingle colors. This color in a glossy finish will draw attention to the homes entryway.

To help you to follow these steps and add value and curb appeal to your home, I put together two ebooks --FRESH Color For Your Home Exterior and FRESH Home Exterior Colors: 5-Steps To Finding The Perfect Hues For Your Home.  GET COPIES OF BOTH EBOOKS FREE from DaVinci Roofscapes.

See the 2014 Color Contest Winner for another example of how to select color and products for a winning exterior look.


Virginia Homeowner Wins $2,500 in National DaVinci Roofscapes “Shake it Up” Exterior Color Contest

And the winner is ... Rachel Delgado of Hampton, Virginia!

With almost 600 votes cast in the DaVinci Roofscapes 2015 “Shake it Up” Exterior Color Contest, Rachel and her husband Danny have won the $2,500 cash grand prize!

Polymer Roof Tiles


"I want to shake up my home by going with an urban farm/rustic chic theme," says Delgado. "Our first priority is to purchase the red paint color recommended as part of the artist rendering to help transform the home exterior. After that we'll focus on the new porch and a new entry door. Finally, the wish list will be complete in a few years when we can top off our 'new' home with the recommended DaVinci composite shake roof!"

According to Wendy Bruch, marketing manager with DaVinci Roofscapes, the sponsor of the contest, the judges saw the potential for dramatic change using color and new products on the Delgado home exterior. “As a finalist, this home was evaluated by radio show co-host Allen Lyle with Today's Homeowner with Danny Lipford and national color expert Kate Smith with Sensational Color," says Bruch. "Kate worked to create an artist’s rendering of what the Delgado home would look like transformed with colorful new products.

"She specified a new Tahoe blend synthetic shake roof from DaVinci along with a Therma-Tru Classic-Craft Canvas Collection fiberglass door painted in a trendy gray tone. As a final touch she recommended the addition of a new low-maintenance balustrade system from Fypon to create the porch space the Delgados desire."

The voting public saw the potential in adding 'top down' color to the Delgado home that will increase the overall curb appeal of the house and make it a stand-out in its neighborhood. For the 2015 contest, the Delgado home rose above more than 180 entries to capture the grand prize.

Want to see a winner from the past? Check out Illinois Homeowner Wins $5,000 in National DaVinci Roofscapes “Shake it Up” Exterior Color Contest!


Why You Need A Color That Is Darker Than You Think

In 1671 Sir Isaac Newton revealed to us the connection between color and light. Ever since that time one thing has been true. Just knowing that there is a connection doesn't make it any easier to choose colors. What makes it easier is knowing how that fact may impact the colors you choose today.

Slate Black luxury roof

In my last post, The Colors Matched When I Picked Them Out. Why Don't They Match Now?, you learned how color can change under different lighting conditions. Now let's take that idea a step further and talk specifically about how to think about light as you choose your exterior colors.

Your exterior is illuminated by sunlight, the brightest of all light. What that means is that a color you select in a store or inside your home will look lighter when used on an exterior. This is especially true of a roof, which in most cases fully bask in the sunlight.

When selecting colors indoors, try a shade or two darker than the color you have in mind. The more intense the sunlight the more the color will be washed out by the light. In the Southwestern states exteriors are mainly warm neutrals or, go to the opposite end of the spectrum, are brightly colored. The reason is that exterior colors in that area must stand up to the intense warm sunlight in the area.

In most areas of the country the sunlight is not that intense but it still is a factor in how the color appears once on your home. Even less intense sunlight will still washout the color.

In the northeast and Midwest the light is cooler. Colors that are slightly grayed are favored by most homeowners for their appealing appearance in the local light. Most of the colors in just about any paint company's line of historic exterior colors fall into this range.

Other factors that can impact the quality of light and thus the color are the change of seasons, weather, the quantity and proximately of trees, and light reflected off the water if the property is waterfront.

I hope these additional tips help you to "see the light" as you select the colors you will use on your home's exterior.