Painting the Dollhouse Pink!

The Gingerbread Diaries

Not to give away the ending or anything…

You guys, the contractor has removed his sign from the front yard and his ladders from the back: guess he thinks he’s done! Actually, I think he’s done, too. I know I’m ready for him to be done and gone and all that but we still have the final HUD inspection today, someone coming to look at the dryer, and Lowes delivering our new dishwasher all this morning.

And, yes, our windows now open.

The last chore of the bank-sponsored renovations was the exterior painting.

Now, for kicks and giggles, let’s go back to December and refresh our memory of what the house looked like when we first saw it:


Cute but a bit rundown. And it looks like it was pink, when, in this photo after we closed and first spent the weekend at the house, you can more accurately see the color is a sort of dingy mauve (faded from a who-knows-when coat of terracotta-ish red, judging from the back porch):


And a few weeks ago it got a coat of primer and looked frighteningly white:

House Photos 052

Backing up a bit, it should be noted that the primer step? Almost didn’t happen.

We were never given any sort of adequate explanation of why they did what they did, but more than a week before the primer picture, above, happened, this happened:

Peeling, cracking, and bubbling--not to mention the rough surface underneath--is not what you want to see on freshly-painted wood siding!

Peeling, cracking, and bubbling–not to mention the rough surface underneath–is not what you want to see on freshly-painted wood siding!

The  brain trust that thought this was a good idea also, later, thought it was smart to paint both the front and back porch floors at the end of the day, so take what you will from that. Needless to say we called them on the shenanigans of putting down the first coat of paint without sufficiently preparing the surface, so then they spent a full week doing what should have been done in the first place: fully prepping the entire surface of the house.

But now it’s just as it should be:


Tadaa! (Please ignore the ramp on the front stairs, we’re keeping it only until we finish moving things in, then it’s going away to reveal the brick steps underneath.)

Selecting paint colors was a bit of an ordeal. At first I wanted the keep the house pink because that’s how I always saw it in my head. But Todd wasn’t feeling the pink so much (or so it seemed), so I went on the hunt for alternatives and some way to keep the pink but in a lesser capacity. The front-runner was actually a doll’s house image I found at Once Upon a Fairlyland:

Both Todd and I could agree on the theory of a light green home with pink and ivory accents, but finding a paint color combo in reality was proving a bit more difficult. We knew we wanted a lighter color as the darker hues (I thought) would work against keeping the house cool year-round but the greens we liked in swatches we learned would look too washed out once on the house. Add to that my desire to stick to the paint colors approved by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, and I probably made things harder than they needed to be.

Finally I asked Todd if he really minded the idea of a pink house so much. Thankfully, he was okay with the peachier pinks (but not too orange), so we came up with this color combo:

My mock-up board of our paint colors

My mock-up board of our paint colors

From the Valspar/National Trust paint collaboration we chose:

  • 2001-6A Del Coronado Coastal Peach (main house color)
  • 2002-5A La Fonda Antique Red (inner window trim, other accents)
  • 5004-2C La Fonda Territory Green (eventual shutters, porch floors, other accents)

And, then, as a warm white for the trim and porch railings, CI203 Dogwood Petal.

When it’s all put together it reminds me of a rose bush, which is fitting as Thomasville is the Rose City (at least of Georgia). The inner trim of the windows painted a contrasting color was a detail I noticed in a lot of the Victorian home pictures I pinned while looking for inspiration (and eye candy… lots of eye candy) and I think it makes for a nice touch instead of just having the whole frame and trim white. Eventually, in addition to adding shutters (not super-common for Victorian homes but we can clearly see the fittings in the existing window frames so we’ll be reconstructing and installing them at some point) we’ll be using the green as well as the red to accent the gingerbread trim on the porch and in other areas yet to be determined.

But for now, we have our cotton-candy (so dubbed by one of our neighbors) pink house and we’re a few forms and a couple of co-signed checks away (*knock on wood*) from having this phase of the renovation done.

Now, if we could just find the time to unpack!