new pergola constructionOut with the old and in with the new. We tore down the old pergola which was completely rotted, and about to fall down on its’ own at any moment, and the new one is up! And now we have to decide on the exterior paint color! Currently it is a dark brown and I am thinking we either go (cough cough) charcoal or ivory. Of course we painted our old michigan cabin charcoal and our current LA house charcoal so I am thinking it might be time to branch out a bit. You know take a walk on the wild side and go with white. haha

I did a quick quick photoshop job to get an idea of what the light would look like. white-or-blackNot my best rendering work but if you squint and move your head side to side you might get an idea of how it will look painted white. I kind of love it, but charcoal still knows how to pull my heart strings. What’s your pick?

kitchen faucet Meanwhile on the inside…

We have a faucet(!) and the tile is grouted and appliances are in place.

kitchen-progress-a-frame2 kitchen-progress-a-frameWe chose “snow white” grout, it’s a slightly darker white than the tile itself which creates a tonal pattern and with all the other textures going on in the space (the wood countertop, the rock on the walls, and the carved wood ceiling beams) I wanted to keep it subtle and modern. I am so in love with the matte white Fireclay tile and how it looks finished out with the grout. Now I am counting the days until we can finish this kitchen off!

Next on the to-do list here is install the doors & drawers which I painted already from SemiHandmade, install lighting, patch holes, hang a floating shelf and finish painting. We are getting closer, and I can almost taste it but in the meantime I need to pick an exterior color ASAP. Help a sister out… Ivory or Charcoal?

To see all of the A-frame renovation progress check here. 
To see our Michigan Cabin renovation check here.

Faucet // Fireclay Tile in Calcite  // Countertops // Range // Refrigerator // sink // Range hood/extractor fan

  • Sarah, it’s really coming along! I say go with white on the exterior. With the warm stone, the ivory will really make the home pop! I love charcoal too but like you said, you’ve done it twice now. It may be a refreshing change every time you escape to Palm Springs!

  • Elizabeth

    I love the idea of ivory! It will look fresh and clean!

  • I vote charcoal! You know that’s what you really want… 🙂

  • harmony

    The white is screaming Palm Springs to me. I have my first trip to Palm Springs booked for January and the white looks like my preconceived vision of a Palm Springs home. i visually lose the darker house in the trees/stone (which isn’t a bad thing if it’s your escape). Either way you hit the jackpot with that quirky cabin.

  • It’s really coming together, it looks lovely and I am very jealous ;), Anyway. I’m all for charcoal normally, but even I tend towards white/ivory here. A walk on the wild side, as you say…..

  • karen evenson

    I LOVE your amazzzzzzzzzzing design taste. I think GO with the WHITE! It will require a tiny bit less air conditioning as it is so reflective of the scorching sun out there in the desert. I say drought and design go hand in hand on this one! You rock! Karen Evenson

  • I would go with white! It makes the whole frame look so much brighter and stands out against the rock!

    Also, I’m totally swooning over that faucet!

  • Heather

    I think it depends on whether you want the house to “pop” or the scenery. I’m leaning to the charcoal but I know that you’ll make either work!

  • I love how fresh the ivory looks in that setting and it really shows off the architecture!

  • Kasey

    Ivory! It will make the home look more modern and pop against the stone.

  • What if you did the frame white/ivory, with the underneath wood paneling an olive green? I’ll email you mock-up 🙂

  • I love the way it looks painted white! Such a brilliant choice

  • Laverne Simoneaux

    I say charcoal. The charcoal against nature…greens of plants, greys, browns and blacks of stone, blue of sky, beige of sand… Makes everything pop! OK white/ivory is Palm Beach. But charcoal is SSS. My 2 cents.

  • oh, man.. that is such a tough decision! i honestly think either would look so beautiful. i guess it depends on what you’re going for. personally, i think i would lean toward the moodiness of charcoal. i think it would look so interesting & intriguing when you pass by while the white will look beautiful but not all that surprising.

  • april

    You always do a gorgeous job! The white is nice and will certainly make it pop but one of those questions in architecture that I love is asking if the building blends with its surroundings and is in harmony with the environment. Personally, I think the gray would satisfy those questions while still being modern and aesthetically pleasing. Plus, the gray just looks edgier to me. But, the white would look great too.

    Good luck with the rest of your reno’s! It’s looking fantastic!



    • Brittany

      You took the words right out of my mouth. I love this ‘sss charcoal’ but with the windows skewing a bit dark you lose all the interesting lines. Bring a bit of California fresh to that more foresty plot…


    Woops – sorry about the all caps!

  • jadie

    Our current house is similar, and I struggled with the exact same question for months. In the end I loved how fresh the white looked with the stonework. (We did end up doing our fascia and door in black though, haha)
    Love seeing these exterior shots!

  • jadie

    Oh, also! Is the soffiting wood? I would totally keep that unpainted!

  • Constance

    With the inside so fresh and white, I love to see the contrasting charcoal on the exterior. I’d save the white for small elements; entry door, or rocks in the landscaping?

  • Jourdan

    Go for ivory! Love how it makes the lines of the window pop.

  • Rachel

    I would also normally say charcoal but I like the ivory here!

  • Andree-Anne

    I will say charcoal! I think this color looks better against the stone… I was wondering what kind of grout did you use for you backlash? Is this Polyblend epoxy grout in ”snow white”? Thank you

  • Jkim

    Darker looks better against the surrounding trees and landscape. If you go white perhaps leave the window mullions dark so as not to distract from the A in A-frame? Beautiful house!

  • Did you do the pergola yourself or hire someone? Trying to decide if we can tackle it on our house!

    • sarah

      HI Marie,
      We hired someone but I think it is fairly straightforward and if you have the brute strength to get the big beams up or a few friends to help you totally could.

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