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Welcome to Salt & Rook, a blog about our DIY home renovation and style | Syracuse, New York

Our Top Dark Brown Exterior Paint Colors for our Dutch Colonial

Our Top Dark Brown Exterior Paint Colors for our Dutch Colonial

After we decided to paint our 1915 Dutch Colonial dark brown with a creamy white trim, I couldn’t find many examples on Pinterest or Instagram. I had a vision but nothing to back it up.

Most brown houses are light brown, taupe, or gray. Others are stained cedar shingles. But there were only a handful of examples for dark brown houses, let alone Dutch Colonials.

So I decided to write this blog post to help others out there who might be thinking of going with a darker, less traditional color for their Dutch Colonial home. If you’d like more background information on this topic, feel free to read our posts on our house color inspiration and how we chose a color scheme.

The Immediate Rejects

Once we settled on a general color scheme, I pulled paint chips and cards willy-nilly at different stores. Anywhere there were paint chips, I collected the ones that caught my eye.

When I felt like I had enough, I sat down with all the colors in natural lighting. A few stood out as immediate rejects. Some of the chips looked purple, gray, and green. The first colors I eliminated were:

These colors aren't bad colors! They just didn't suit my needs. Moving on.

The Top Five Colors

After the first round of eliminations, I got it down to the "these are definitely dark brown" colors.

Looking back on it, I should have rejected Black Mocha in the initial round. But it was one of the first colors I pulled and I wanted to see if it would work. But let me be clear: Black Mocha is a black, not a brown.

Regardless! Here are the final five I considered for the house. All of these colors are very pretty, dark, rich, somewhat muted browns:

Final Two Colors

I swatched the final five in order from darkest (Black Mocha) to lightest (Star Anise). Although I love all of the top five colors, I could only pick one. The three darkest shades (Black Mocha, French Roast, and Espresso Beans) were clearly too dark for us. So they got the immediate boot.

That left us with two final colors: 

  • Star Anise

  • Enamored

Since Pat favored the lighter of the two (Star Anise) and I would paint our house black like my soul if it wouldn’t have looked awful, we compromised.

Meeting in the middle left us with Enamored as our final color. 

Method for Picking a Paint Color

We didn’t set out to follow a certain method to pick out a house color, but perhaps the steps we took might help you decide. We did things by process of elimination:

  1. Picked up as many paint chips as we could from every store possible

  2. One round of elimination based on paint chips

  3. Second round of elimination based on painting swatches with samples

  4. Final round of elimination between our favorite two colors

Enamored surprised me. When I had all the chips, it didn’t stand out to me at all. Even though I didn’t suspect it would be my final color, it fits all the qualities I want: dark, brown, and not too saturated.

Finally: I used the C2 Paint Enamored chip and got it color matched at Home Depot for the sample. I know color matching can be tricky and usually isn’t advised, but I was happy with the sample and excited to see the color change.

Have you used a process of elimination for choosing a paint color, or did you go with your gut? Did you try different paint brands, or do you tend to stick to a certain brand? And finally: what do you think of color matching? Let me know in the comments!

Choosing Exterior Paint Colors for Our Old House

Choosing Exterior Paint Colors for Our Old House