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Green and Red Are Not So Nice House Colours Together

Posted by: Heidi Nyline

Believe it or not I am not calling out this house for being green.

While I can understand how on first glance the colour scheme of this house can make you double take and wonder "what were they thinking?", it's not the very green colour of this house that makes it look...well...bad.

It's the trim that is the problem and those two white pillars.

Why are they white?

Did they run out of trim paint?

When it comes to choosing the exterior colours for a house you want to create a cohesive look by not randomly introducing colours. These white pillars stick out because they don't tie into anything else on the house, except the windows and because the windows are trimmed out in brown, it doesn't work.

Speaking of the Trim

The trim makes the green scream. I think the plan was to maybe to match it to the front door but the brown trim has too much red in it and the two colours are not a pretty combination. Red and green are complementary colours on the colour wheel so when you use them together they make the other look more intense and brighter. That's why this trim looks red and the siding screams green.

Linda Holt of Linda Holt Designs wrote a great article on how to use and not use complementary colours on her blog. She shows the exact same problem in a cherry wood kitchen with green walls. You can check out her article here. She perfectly explains the difference between complementary and complimentary. This trim does not compliment the green.

If the entire trim and the pillars all had been painted out in white you would have a much prettier combination. Maybe not my favourite shade of green but it would have worked and this cute house on the corner would having been charming. The white would also tie in the white windows and made their nice detail a feature of the front of the house.

I like fresh green houses. Here is a perfect example.

I drive by this little house all the time and finally one day stopped and snapped a few photos and pull out my fan deck. The colour is Benjamin Moore Georgian Green HC-115 and the trim is Benjamin Moore Sussex Green HC-109 with a standard white trim.

I love the look of this little bungalow that went from boring beige to fresh green so much that I want to cut down the bushes in the front. This house doesn't need to hide behind anything.

I love the rich green front door on this house and it would have worked on the one in my neighbourhood as well, but I would love to hear from you on what colour front door you would use.

So now you know that complementary colours are not always friends and I am all about keeping my neighbourhood friendly.

Posted by: Nancy Alwin
Heidi, I will say that reds and greens can work, it just depends upon which you choose. But I would do something more interesting then white trim. Nice post!


Hi Nancy, You are very right green and red can be complimentary as well as complementary. I keep trying to think of a dark trim that would work with this particular green and honestly it stumps me. I think a dark grey could work but would love to hear your ideas. I lovely heritage yellow could work nicely with this green as well I think.

Posted by: Ellen@Color Calling
Heidi, I have no courage to stop and snap a picture of someone''s house for my blog. None. I am scared to even roll down the window and snap from the car. (I frequently think about houses that I would like to photograph, and maybe you have inspired me) I love that you can do this! The Georgian Green door/Sussex green cottage is precious! That is a lovely combination. I am bookmarking this post. Great job.


Hi Ellen, Believe me I am quick at my picture snapping. It's even more daunting when I go up to a house with my fan deck to check a colour out.

Posted by: Kristie@thedecorologist
Great post, Heidi! The second house you show is so much more charming and RIGHT. Exterior color is hard to get right if you don't really know what you're doing!


Hi Kristie, You are so right. Exteriors are tough to get right and if you get it wrong you (and your neighbours) could be living with it for a long time.

Posted by: Tess Wittler
Heidi, if the home was trimmed in white, what would be your advice on the garage door? Green or white?


Hi Tess, I would probably say green but it could go either way because the white trim would make the green much more crisp.

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