The Cross House

Painting a Historic House…Historically. PART VIII

After MUCH ado, I discovered that I was painting the Cross House wrong.

I had been dedicated from day one in ascertaining the original 1894 colors, and recreating this palette.

I thought I had.

I had not.


No matter the recent discoveries, I plan to continue with the color palette I started using in 2014.

I would, however, like to belatedly honor what architect Charles Squires selected for the Cross House in 1894.

And I think I have a solution.


This is the second-floor sun porch. It is currently enclosed: I plan to make an all-weather porch again. And, I plan to recreate the original 1894 color palette in this space.


Some readers have suggested recreating the original exterior colors on the adjacent carriage house. I am disinclined to do this as it would create a “disconnect” between the carriage house and the Cross House. I am eager for the two to “match” as they did in 1894.

By re-introducing the 1894 colors to the sun porch though, I will at least have a small area that I can point to and say: This is what the house looked like in 1894.

And this will please me. Immensely.



9 Responses to Painting a Historic House…Historically. PART VIII

  1. Great idea Ross! Seems like a good way to honour the past.

    I really really really think your colour choice is much more beautiful than the original and the house looks amazing. And honestly when I read “shades of olive” I see your colour choice, and definitely not the original. Too pale! 🙂

  2. It’s genius. It’s a simple and brilliant solution — and it will brighten up shady spot. Very clever.

  3. Is it possible the original owners didn’t like the pale color choice and had the house repainted the color you thought was the original (that is the one you painted the house)? Mrs Cross seems to have made a few changes to the house while it was being build (see staircase). And to me early owner’s alterations to the house is as original than the first try. The color scheme could have been too modern for their taste, you don’t get everything always perfect at first 🙂 . Congratulations on the work you have do so far, it is remarkable, keep at it.

    • The previous owner, Bob, removed them. He is confident that he has them. I suspect he reused them on another property, and is afraid to tell me!

      • Bob. If you read this, it’s okay to tell us the truth. This way Ross can go see them and get an idea of what they looked like.

  4. I like that idea. It will give you a bit of a chance to really judge the color in a larger space, and since it’s lighter, may highlight the porch in a subtle way.

  5. I still think this porch was originally a lighter color than the whole house. Variation on the olive shades. It’s so dark, you wouldn’t notice it from the street. Discuss…

Leave a Response

Your email address will NEVER be made public or shared, and you may use a screen name if you wish.