How to choose exterior colors

Exterior Project Guides

How to choose exterior colors


Picking the right exterior color scheme can breathe new life into your home. A single hue has the power to bring architectural features to life or help hide blemishes. With our help, you can pick a smart color scheme that harmonizes with its surroundings, flatters your landscape, and complements your home’s architectural style.

How to choose exterior colors

It's All in the Details

Celebrate your home's architectural style. Many architectural styles have distinct color palettes that enhance the style's characteristic, architectural elements. The Olympic® Exterior Color Collection can help you find the perfect palette for your home.

Your landscape can be your inspiration. You can complement yellow roses in your garden by using a color like Shell Flower (A16-3) or highlight greenery by using colors like Highland Meadow (D66-3) to make landscape elements your focus.

North or south? Consider which direction your home faces when choosing colors because light & shadows can affect how your colors look. If your home faces to the north, consider cooler colors such as Going Gray (D57-2) or Chambray (D55-3). If it faces south, warmer tones like Classic Khaki (D12-2) or Vanilla Brandy (C16-3) may work better.

It's Okay to Try Before You Buy

  • Testing colors with color chips or 8 oz. samples before you start your project can help you feel confident that you are making the right choice.
  • Select the color chips that you prefer for your base, accents, and trim. You should also pick a cooler, a warmer, a lighter, and a darker shade of each color to give you five options for each element. Don't forget to label each chip to avoid confusion when you are ready to make your decision.
  • Tape your color chips to the exterior elements on your home and observe each one at various times of the day as colors change in different lights. Consider how the colors look in the morning, mid-day and in the evening. Completing this easy step will help ensure that you choose colors that you are always happy with – 24/7.
  • After you narrow down your color choice, consider the sheen that you want to use. Satin and semi-gloss finishes are excellent choices to help highlight your trim or other accent features of your home.