The Dream House Diaries #3 – The Exterior

The Dream House Diaries #3 – The Exterior

In case you missed it, I actually posted yesterday and if I was you, I’d have a look…some fairly AMAZING/brand new furniture pieces from 219 were featured….if  you’re a Karl Springer fan, you’ll find these new goodies beyond.
Moving on, and since I spent the whole weekend consumed with the idea of building a house, it’s time for the third edition of…

And for this one, we’re moving to the part of the plan that’s driving me totally and completely bonkers…aka…
As you know, I have a firm plan for what I want the inside to look like…

…which is basically some sort of Paris apartment replica, with a little New York edge thrown in by way of weirdly masculine/modern furniture.
Now the problem with said plan is that I can’t for the life of me figure out how to  make this same vision happen on the outside…largely because I’m scared to death of anything pseudo French…as soon as you try that in my neighborhood, things tend to end up this….
…and let’s just say I’m not in the market for a Canadian version of Versailles.
There are literally hundreds of these grande dames in my hood and with the exception of this one (which is around the corner from my house and so much lovelier in person than this crappy through the window shot is able to show)…
…I hate them all.
Though when I look through the inspiration files, I do quite enjoy…
…everything about this one…
…the compound like nature of this one…

…the materials, colour scheme and exact frilly but retrained style of this…

(though how the hell do you take this townhouse look that I love so much and make it into a single family home that doesn’t end up looking ridiculous?)
…the oldness of this mixed with a touch of modern…

…the shape and entrance of this pretty lady…

…the feeling of Old Hollywood this gal gives…

…and the indisputable prettiness of this one…

But as much as I love all of them, I just think trying to make this old stuff look not totally dumbass when replicated is kind of a recipe for disaster.
So, French seems sort of out…though it definitely matches the inside style the best…which is why I’m so darn-nation confused.
What the heck do I do with the outside?
My number one favourite/sprawling courtyard type of dreamhouse…
…can’t really happen…all the lots we’re considering are just too narrow.
The design confusion + physical property restraints = one giant ‘diary of a scattered psycho’ inspiration pile…I’m quite sure that there isn’t a single common thread in any of it…with the exception of colour scheme….we’re definitely working with some combo of black and white…maybe light gray…with greenary….
But aside from that, it’s definitely a mixed bag of god knows what to do…
I like the idea of doors on the mainfloor rather than windows…also am thinking of stucco as a possibility…
…more doors and more stucco…

I shopped in the black windows on this one because the material/colour combo is what I’m thinking….white stucco, cedar shakes, black windows…
As a stucco alternative, I also like painted brick with the cedar…
Everything about this house/these windows makes me happy…

If there was room on the lot (which there probably isn’t), I love the idea of a single story front house, with breezeways and courtyards behind…

My husband ins’t keep on these guys because he’s sort of an atheist and thinks these dudes look like churches…

…there’s something about the second one though, that  I think is pretty daper.

More doors and courtyard goodness…

Most of my inspire pile is white…but this much loved black dude is also on the list..

This lot orientation could work and I love the idea of a big covered veranda…

The feel of this and the giant black windows…

…so wish I had the space for a one story!
The bygone era elegance of this…

This shape would work swimmingly on the lot but I think it too Nantucket for the inside style…they don’t seem to jive in my head…

And PS, aside from the knock off French numbers, the style above is everywhere in my neighborhood.
Pretty but too wide for my lot…
Same with this one…though I like how it feels sort of modern and traditional at the same time and again with the white/cedar…

And then there’s this sort of townhouse look that I LOVE/works perfectly with the inside…

…but would look pretty rediculous standing by itself.
And then there’s this type of thing…

…that I also really quite love, but also doesn’t jive with the inside/surroudings.
And to take it all even more confusing, even though I love clean lines, a part of me is a total maximalist…

…who wants a show-stopping entrance…

…and fancy stuff.

{all photos are via Pinterest and Houzz}
You see my dilemma?
Holy farksticks…
I need voices of reason (meaning you dudes) to step in and sort this shit out.
Virtual moonbeams and unicorns in advance.
No Comments
  • Hollie Cooper
    Posted at 10:04h, 10 June Reply

    I love the black exterior with white as the accent. I’m a big fan of the brownstone style images too! tough choice with a million options. {}

  • Pam @ Cherish Toronto
    Posted at 10:16h, 10 June Reply

    Geez, Christine, there is so much here that I can see why you’re having such a hard time sorting it all out. Now you’ve got me confused too. It’s ALL soooo beautiful!! I see a white exterior, black windows and a cedar shake roof. But as for the style… How do you mix modern and traditional and Parisian into one without looking crazy? Find an amazing architect?

  • Albertina M. Cisneros
    Posted at 10:41h, 10 June Reply

    Yikes! this is a toughie…inside matching outside….I think you are right you can’t really replicate because it is a recipe for disaster….plus you need the sprawling land to make a fancy house actually look good…I would go for a modern/straight lines kind of a look….white brick and black steel windows….I think its the 8th photo from the bottom…

  • Julie
    Posted at 11:20h, 10 June Reply

    oh my word, I now know that I could not design my own home! there are way too many options and designs/looks I love that I doubt I could choose! I’m kinda all over the french style and think that there must be a way to make it work? I can totally see you all of a sudden having an “aha” moment and things will just click! LOVE the idea of doors on the main floor, a must and our house in Winnipeg was all stucco, it’s def my fav for exteriors. I know it’s not at all the same but for some reason I keep thinking of the house from Something’s Gotta Give. Maybe it’s the cedar shingles? But oh, how I loved that home!

  • Laura
    Posted at 11:27h, 10 June Reply

    I really like your choices! I think you have a lot to go on and you could easily pick a plan like this that fits your plot and customize it:

    I would say definitely don’t do a modern house in a more traditional neighbourhood. I’m also not sure that the interior vibe would match the outside.

  • Erin
    Posted at 13:29h, 10 June Reply

    The ones that resonate for me are pared down in terms of ornamentation, but still retain some drama in the form of traditional architecture and finishes.

    My two favorites are the black beauty with conical topiaries and the white painted brick number with a cedar roof.

    Good luck!

  • Rebecca { MyDarlingHouse}
    Posted at 14:42h, 10 June Reply

    This is the best post!! So many great homes it’s hard to chose but I think my fav is the white stucco with the black windows and the pink flowers. Gorge!

  • ChicLiving
    Posted at 14:50h, 10 June Reply

    I am in love with the townhouse looks. White with black framed windows….pure perfection.

  • Barbara Matson
    Posted at 19:00h, 10 June Reply

    Holy smokes, my head is reeling! But I am all for the “black dude” as you referred to. If we bought the house we are in, I would consider a dark grey, almost black paint over the stucco, with a red front door. Juicy.

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  • Tim
    Posted at 07:44h, 11 June Reply

    oh C, I can’t help you … I am in love with them all just like you and that’s exactly the style of my dream home. I say we just move in together! Maybe I can be the nanny who doesn’t really take care of the kids ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Laura
    Posted at 08:14h, 11 June Reply

    I know it’s a tad bit colonial, but I thought of your post when I saw it!

  • Susie @ Maddie's Nest
    Posted at 09:07h, 11 June Reply

    In the middle of your post the image with the blue sky and the writing on the image….pretty sure that one is in my neighborhood and I drive past it almost every day. If it is the same house….that section you show is for their art. The house is huge! Love your ispiration images. I esp. love the light painted brick with grey.

  • C a i t l i n
    Posted at 00:23h, 12 June Reply

    Could you give some feedback on the size of the lot and the amount of square footage you’re trying to achieve? I think that might impact the exterior look you go for. For example anything “french” might read “mcmansion” no matter how tastefully done if the lot is just too small. Also it might help you if you narrowed down your actual options on exterior doors and windows -unless you plan to go completely custom, because what is available may influence your style choices. I hope this house happens, it will be such fun to see it come together!

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  • Sadie + Stella
    Posted at 06:53h, 12 June Reply

    Could this be anymore lovely? I am obsessed with those wood herringbone floors. Swoon.

  • Alex - Hydrangea Girl
    Posted at 04:59h, 13 June Reply

    Right. I adore, adore traditional homes with a twist of French. I also adore the ultra-modern and clean lines of new architecture. But something I love even more (and would want to have in my dream home) is a mix of BOTH. A stunning juxtaposition of old mixed with new. Harmoniously complimenting each other. I adore strong differences that work so well together.

    That’s my two cents! ๐Ÿ˜‰

    xx A

  • Kathleen Rose
    Posted at 10:07h, 13 June Reply

    I think you need to marry your inside vision with your outside: multiple high double doors and lots of light rules out the modern ones. Your builder will help you decide on the finishing outside with the price points (urp). Oooh the cut concrete is dreamy!! Love the choice of black windows with the white exterior and cedar shakes. A courtyard would be ideal if the lot would fit it.

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