Regional Color, Is it the weather?

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Cape Cod Weathered Siding

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Regional color preferences are based on several factors, foremost is the available and popular building materials of a region. It is true that most regional color preferences appear on the exterior of homes and commercial establishments whereas interior choices tend to be more personal.

Yes, the weather does have an influence on color, cool colors tending to show up in environments in the north and warm colors in the south. Is this because of the ambient temperature or a natural occurrence in a region? I think it is both, just as warm colors are dominant in the southern hemisphere because the sun is a major element but also the surroundings tend to be brown based or yellow toned hues. Dry grasses, sand and sun equal warm colors in the warmer climates whereas snow, sky, green trees and gray stone is obvious in the cooler climates.

Ethnic cultures also add to the mix in regions and often are common to an area such as the bright, warm colors of Mexico and Latin America that are strong influences in the southern part of the US. But also the use of materials, such as stucco is found in those southern countries and is are natural canvases for the warm colors of gold, peach, yellow, cream and orange. Putting cool colors on stucco doesn’t always work and can look somewhat out of place whereas peach looks terrible on cedar, the substrate itself strongly sways the choice of color.

Home styles often dictate the color of a structure, such as the dusty hues of arts and crafts, the historic colors on Georgians and Victorians as well as the rustic stains on cedars and shakes. Cape Cod gray is a natural color applied to cedar shakes due to the tradition of that color as a coastal favorite.

Florida Stucco Home

Roof colors are also regional with white as a common roof color in the warmer climate due to its concept of a light reflective color, terra cotta tile is more common in warm climates and grays appear more often in the cool climates. So as the roof color goes it influences the house color or vice versa.

White, a perennial favorite, is all over the map and can be found in all parts of the US as it is a perfect neutral along with beige and clay colors that are among the most popular colorsoverall.

The rules of regional colors are changing as more people move from one region to the next taking their favorites with them, so today you can find a mix of styles, colors and materials in one single neighborhood. Enjoy the diversity!

By Pat Verlodt

Categories: Color Trends, Exterior colors

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