Is Ordering Samplize Helpful? How I Chose Our Exterior Rowhouse Color

Today we’re chatting about the process of painting our house and whether I thought ordering samples from Samplize was helpful in choosing a paint color.

While I haven’t discussed it on here, I’m sure many of you caught glimpses on Instagram of the transformation of our exterior. We knew as soon as we bought our house that keeping the color as-is was not realistic. the paint was peeling off. It probably had’t been touched in at least four decades, if not longer. It was a dijon mustard yellow with an avocado green door. All of the trim had been painted the same color. It was totally drab and worn.

But this was also one of the hardest decisions we’ve made in renovating our house. I’m typically confident in the decisions I make in design, but this one felt weighty. And, by weighty, I mean really expensive. I did not want to get this wrong.

Choosing the Colors to Consider for Our 1895 Queen Anne Rowhome

For months prior to painting our house, I took photos of any house that caught my eye. I kept each photo in a saved album on my phone, and I looked at the patterns that started to emerge. It was a difficult exercise because Capitol Hill has so many different house styles that what looks great on one home may not work on ours.

I’ve talked on Instagram before about how our style of home is not necessarily what I would have picked had I had the entire smorgasbord  of Capitol Hill homes in front of me. I love a federal style home. I love some ornate detailing over the windows. I don’t necessarily love a blocky take on a Queen Anne Victorian, which is what we got. The detailing on our home is limited to the third floor, and the rest is very straight lined.

It’s also a tall presence so some of the more vibrant colors that look charming on smaller two-story homes don’t work when they’re applied to four floors that sit high up above street level.

All that being said, we also had to work around our neighbors. We have white to one side and light gray to the other with a cool pink-red on the end. Choosing a warm color — like the dijon mustard yellow we had — wouldn’t work. It needed to flow, but it also needed to contrast.

With those considerations in mind, I gravitated towards blue-green-grays, which actually echo the blue-green color palette inside. I also quickly realized that I didn’t like pairing too many colors together or too vibrant because it started to take on a look that felt more appropriate for an arts and crafts bungalow than a stately Victorian. I know a lot of Victorians did have richer colors but, again, we just don’t have the ornate detail that demands or even fits that look.

I went through dozens of swatches and eventually narrowed it down to about six colors that I wanted to seriously consider. With those colors, I order samples from Samplize.

is ordering samplize helpful - is samplize worth it

Is Ordering Samplize Helpful?

We’ve ordered from Samplize several times already in this house. When we were deciding on hall colors, Samplize was a lifesaver. My contractor was adamant that once he’d prepared the walls, no additional paint should go on or it could cause flashing even once painted. Samplize was the only was to test out colors beyond a tiny swatch. I ordered tons of whites and a few wild card colors for the hallway, and it was one of those wild card colors that ended up being our choice (Nelson Blue). Had we not used Samplize, we probably would have gone with a neutral.

We used it again in the dining room, where we were between a slew of different blue-greens. I wanted to get just the right color — not too vivid, not too muted. We put about 8 different Samplize samples up initially, then narrowed it down day-by-day until we landed on Stratton Blue (starting to see a color theme here?).

With the front of the house, I wanted to take extra precautions not to get flashing and I didn’t want to mess up the color choice because that’s an expensive mistake to make. I put the colors up and left them for about a week, looking at them each time I went out the front door to take in the hues at different times of day and in different weather.

Where We Landed With Our Color Palette

In the end, we made a game time decision the morning of painting. I actually went with a color that hadn’t been on my radar initially but that I threw in my Samplize cart at the last minute. Homburg Gray was the winner for the house color, Greenblack on the trim, White Dove on the white time, and Jasper on the door. The overall look straddles the line between dark and light, with the light trim keeping it from going too moody. If I hadn’t done Samplize, I definitely could have gone too light or too dark.

The difference between a 2 inch swatch and a large sticky sample is stark, and I’m so grateful to Samplize for sponsoring this post because they’re a company I already swore by and used. If you want to try them out on your next project, you can get their ‘buy 8, get 2 free’ promo. It’s automatically applied at checkout, and, if you’re anything like me, 10 is the perfect number of samples to try, ha. You might end up going with the one you least expected.

is ordering samplize helpful - is samplize worth it


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