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Architectural Detail Overload on Your Exterior?

Here is the Best Way to Minimalize So You Can Modernize

A large part of what I do is helping clients transform their homes by creating a fresh new color palette. I am an Architectural Color Consultant focused mainly on the exterior design of residential homes. People find me when they are struggling to choose paint colors and are looking for assistance to take the stress out of the process from someone that is well-versed in color and how it translates with the properties of paint.

I create paint color plans that provide a cohesive flow with the current architectural elements and make recommendations for other exterior features such as roofs, doors, windows, shutters, and lighting.

Paint by far is the best way to change your home’s exterior easily and economically impactfully. But so many of my clients are afraid of making a mistake on such a big undertaking.

Lately, one of the most prevalent themes for my clients has been:

How can they modernize and update their home when it was originally built with an abundance of detail, including differing masonry substrates, particularly brick, and stone


Exterior home before and after painting.
Before/After Romabio Classico Limewash on Stone

Back in the early 2000’s higher-end custom homes were built using a multitude of exterior finishes combining stacked stone, brick, flagstone, siding, stucco, cedar shakes, and sometimes all in one house. Back then what was desired when you were building a large custom home was more detail and finishes to create a high-end lodge-type feel. In the Southwest, pairing brick and heavy stone was very prevalent.

The paint color choices had to bridge all these materials and make them come together. The home builder's design center would then choose paint colors to complement the brick and stone usually in undertones of the stone or brick which translated to dark brown, beiges, and gold.

As trends have changed, most people are tired of that craftsman lodge-style dark look and desire a clean, light, and more modern minimalistic look for their home’s exterior. The issue now for so many is how to embrace all the large amount of brick and stone and turn it into something more aesthetically pleasing by changing the dated color palette.

Instead of a huge renovation to remove the unwanted stone & masonry, there are now paints and limewashes that can cover the less-than-desirable parts of the area. This game-changer can provide a somewhat economical way to update what is there without a costly demo.

Oftentimes there are existing architectural elements that the client may want to keep, my job is to find a way to make that happen or convince them why it can’t.

I am always frank and honest to guide my clients to do renovations that will be classic and stand the test of time. Painting brick homes white has been huge for the past ten years.

What I do is guide them to the correct light colors depending on the existing architecture and what they are trying to achieve. Not every brick home should be painted white, and unfortunately so many that attempt to paint their brick homes miss the mark and choose a color that is “too white” and use the wrong type of paint.

The mineral paints, specifically Romabio give the best and most authentic-looking outcome and this line is always my recommendation for brick and stone. These paints are not only good for the environment, but they also allow the brick to breathe and minimize paint failure.

That was always negative about painting brick or stone that the homeowner might be inviting an issue when the coating they put on could crack or peel, so most consumers decided to leave well enough alone. Before these products came on the scene my paint plans when specifying painting the brick consisted of a masonry primer and 2 coats of finish in latex paint, often done in a slight sheen for wear and durability.

This is not a particularly bad way to treat the brick, it just has a different look, and compared with Romabio’s Flat Masonry paint, there is no comparison of what looks the best.

The Flat Masonry looks belong on the brick and you can see and feel the difference. A regular latex coating can look like plastic and covers and fills in the texture. Some consumers think they like that, but once they see the difference it all makes sense how the brick is meant to appear.

When a home is over the top combining brick and stone you can treat one of the masonries and let the other stay intact. This project was done using a heavier limewash mixture to provide more coverage on the stone which gave a lighter more uniform finish yet still subtly highlights the masonry and modernized facade.

The great thing is that there are options and versatility when applying Limewash on stone.

This flagstone needed an update and the Limewash tinted to the house color a great solution provided a great solution to calm down a stone that could have orange, yellow, brown, or red stones.

I convince my clients to start with a heavy dilution rate when applying to stone because so many unsealed stones have the tendency to grab onto and absorb the coating too much.

So starting with a one-to-one ratio of Classico Limewash diluted with water will allow you to see how the stone will take the Limewash. And keep in mind the coating fills in and becomes a bit more opaque as it dries.

Remember you have some working time (3-5 days) to remove the product if you don’t like the limewash color mixture, although I have never had that happen. It is always such an exciting option to even out the stone and then my clients LOVE their stone.

There are many ways to update your home’s exterior with the right paint and color.

Reach out if I can help!


Before Dark Painted Brick House
Dated Exterior With Many Architectural Elements (Before)

After Painting Updated and Refreshed this Exterior
Painted Brick, Lighter Trim, Streamlined Details Modern & Classic (After)



Hi, thanks for stopping by!

Creating Color Plans for over 20 years. As a former Benjamin Moore Paint Retail stores in Atlanta, y knowledge of Paint and Color is extensive. My knowledge of many different paint coatings including Benjamin Moore, Sherwin Williams, Pratt & Lambert, Farrow & Ball and several secondary lines has been instrumental in conveying to my clients the relationship to the built environment. 

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