Remember when we said we were going to wait to tackle the exterior until early fall? HA! We have no chill. When our carpenter was installing the interior doors, he asked if we wanted him to install a new front door....that turned into new siding, new light fixture, new windows, and soon, a new, extended front porch and railing. Project creep at its finest.
We will do a full blog post all about the exterior soon. We'll dig into the materials, costs, and process. Long story short, we installed new, vertical board and batten on the from of the house, and painted the remainder of the house (the other three sides) to match. The board and batten made a HUGE difference in making the house feel updated. This is the 7" board and batten that we used!
Here are the two design boards that I originally created for the exterior of the house (way back in January!). I had a hard time choosing between painting the exterior white or navy. Ultimately, because our neighbors have a blue house, we decided to go with white. The brown roof was not my favorite, but it is pretty new and in great condition, so it's staying for now. In order to pull in the warm tones in the roof, we added brass accents as opposed to black. The soft brass elements compliment the earthy tones of the shingles.
Because we decided to replace the front door sooner than expected, we had limited options. We needed something in stock that we could pick up within three days! Yikes. Commence multiple trips to Lowes, Home Depot, and Menards (you know, the rounds). Originally, I had been planning to order a door that was basically a full window, like this. Why not add more natural light? You know how I am with windows....a little too zealous! The main living area already has three large double windows, each up to 80" wide. The front door is directly across from the bathroom, so, we ended up going with this door with more privacy. Let's face it, don't we all neglect to close the bathroom door when we are home alone? It was the perfect balance between privacy and sunshine...it still has a window that let's in plenty of light! Bonus, this door was quite affordable! It is primed fiberglass. Fiberglass is ideal for Michigan because of our extreme temperature ranges. Unlike wood, fiberglass is more stable to environmental changes. Because it arrived already primed, it was easy to paint.
Now, let's talk brass. Brass is the WORST to shop for - it's expensive, and often, brass doesn't match with other brass (ie. coordinating a sconce and door knob). I had a hard time finding the right brass sconces rated for exterior use. After weeks of hunting, I decided to give metallic spray paint a shot! I picked up this inexpensive galvanized sconce, primed it with this primer, and added a few coats of gold spray paint. For $39, it was worth a try!
I had originally picked out this front door fixture. It is BEAUTIFUL but I had a hard time justifying $399 (more than we paid for the front door!). I found this one on Amazon for $99 and loved the shape! Since the sconce experiment went so well, I decided to go ahead and try it out on the front door knob. Originally, I used this spray paint (same as what I used on the sconce). It worked wonderfully on the light, but did not look great on the front door hardware. After just a few weeks, it began to get blocky and felt sticky. After doing some more research, I decided to sand down the door knob, apply another coat of primer, and finish with this Pure Gold spray paint rated for exteriors (next time, I'll do my research first. *eye roll*). It worked GREAT and I actually love the color of the finish even more! Not bad for $99!
We obviously need to talk about the front door color! We could have gone in so many fun directions with the front door...navy, pastel pink, green...I had envisioned a beachy blue door since day one. Although I got tempted to change course, blue was my favorite all along. Selecting the perfect blue was a PROCESS! There are so many great blues out there. I picked up samples of a few Behr colors while pursuing Home Depot. After taping them to the door, I was immediately drawn the bottom three: Watery, Nature's Reflection, and Urban Raincoat. After studying these colors for an absurd amount of time, I decided that Watery was just a pinch too dark, and Nature's Reflection was a pinch too green. I wanted the door to be fun and beachy, but also soft and classic. The bottom swatch, Urban Raincoat, was the winner! It's dusty and sophisticated, yet still playful!
Note: Below, you can see the brass door knob before I repainted it!
Next, we will build a new front porch on top of the extisting stairs. We have plans to extend the length of the porch to go all the way to the right edge of the house! We have a great view of the lake from the front of the house, so we want to make this space comfortable to seat more guests as we expect to enjoy many cups of coffee, summer dinners, and board games on the front porch. Stay tuned....porch project begins soon!
Thanks for joining us as we renovate the #HTlakehouse!
Hannah & Tyler
We are a home renovation and real estate duo currently sharing the renovation of our Holland cottage, along with flips and new builds. We created this blog as a resource for our readers, helping home owners, travelers, and future friends to learn how to renovate efficiently, and affordably!