Houses built in the 1960s provide examples of many styles of architecture, including the omnipresent ranch style as well as mid-century modern style seen in homes built by real estate developer Joseph Eichler. However, the diverse architectural styles of this period had at least one thing in common: the use of dramatic exterior colours. Whether you are restoring a genuine '60s beauty or recreating your favourite style through new construction, don't be afraid to choose paint colours that are true to the period.
Photographs of modern-style homes in the 1960s often show a brightly-coloured front door that makes today's colour choices appear tame. An orange-red or bright teal door combined with trim in dark or light neutrals against various colours of brick exteriors created drama that was commonplace. In ranch or traditional-style homes, siding was more often painted a shade of blue or green than white, with doors and shutters sometimes painted in colours such as yellow or coral for high contrast.
A series of colours found alongside one another on the colour wheel provided a variety of paint colour palettes for houses in the '60s. Hues of yellow, orange and orange-red, or of green and blue-green, were commonly used in the early 1960s. In the second half of the decade, these colours became more earthy. Rust combined with brown, or avocado green combined with mossy green, gained popularity.
Ice Cream Pastels
Colours of peach, strawberry pink, blueberry, and pistachio ice creams were widely used in the early part of the 1960s for exteriors of smaller homes, particularly in coastal settings. Sometimes two colours were combined: one for siding and one for trim. Creamy white was an ideal compliment for these ice cream colours, whether on doors, shutters or miscellaneous trim.
Gray ruled as the neutral of choice during the decade, followed closely by brown. Rich, deep-to-medium greys were used for doors, shutters and trim, particularly on modern-style homes. Lighter greys were more common on ranch and traditional homes. Deep browns were paired with tones of cocoa and beige. Greyish greens worked as neutrals and complemented homes whose architecture was intended to blend with the surrounding environment.
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