The Cross House

Ross Is Gonna Do WHAT?

In 2017, I painted the porch ceiling of the 1894 Cross House.

And the color choice was…unexpected.


I was guided by an early 1890s paint catalog, which revealed, to my utter surprise, that pink and salmon were often used for porch ceilings. Who knew!


So, I did this. NOTE: The color is not so intense in real life. But it IS unexpected!


And this is how things have been since.

But…but…Ross wasn’t entirely satisfied. And, as y’all know by now, that can lead to, ah, changes.

I loved how unexpected the color was. It was a shock after viewing the soooooo very tasteful exterior. Oh! Oh! It gave the house a jolt, and make it feel fresh.

But it was not, well, 100% the perfect color.

A while back I had Sherwin-Williams color match the pinky sample from the 1892 paint catalog, and painted a bit on.

Oh dear. It just wasn’t right.

And so things, again, remained unchanged.

Today however (scroll down)…























…I tried this. And I like it. The color seems to better complement the wall/trim colors, while still being unexpected. It also looks much better with the stained-glass.


What is motivating this is the ceiling of the porte-cochère which can only be reached via scaffolding, and which will get painted later this year. I sooooooo only want to paint it once.




19 Responses to Ross Is Gonna Do WHAT?

  1. Nice choice. Definitely, much better darker. Again, more work for yourself, but it will be worth it.

  2. While the first color choice is exciting, the second more subtle color calls out to the wooden door and let’s the green trim shine on its own. Not that my thoughts matter much, but I do like the new choice. They told Dory, just keep swimming, just keep swimming… perhaps we should say to Ross, Just keep painting, just keep painting…

  3. You’d better sell the house before you get old if you don’t want to have to paint it again. As my uncle would have said, “I am giving you the needle.” I am fully aware that you mean paint it again during this first round of bringing the house up to par. I just can’t bring myself to use that acronym that sounds like lying around in an upholstered chair without the third L.

  4. Yep. Much better. I admire your eye for color. I get inspired by the Sistine Chapel’s ceiling. That salmon porch ceiling is inspirational. More good work, Ross.

  5. Yes, yes, yes! That feels more earthy…homey…is the same tonality…rich…sets the porch down. Fabulous choice!

  6. Guess I’m in the minority as I still love the brighter color. 🙂

    But… you have to do what makes you glow. It’s your house!

  7. Good choice, Ross. Kudos.

    I love all the painting you’ve been doing lately. Does my heart good. Each is a step forward and a verification of hope for the future of the Cross House. I love to go back and compare photos of the House as you bought it next to your latest updates. You’ve come a long way!

  8. IDK, paint colors even ‘period correct’ ones, have always struck me as just someone’s opinion 100+ years ago (unlike say, more rigid rules of form, scale, and proportion which can make an addition to an otherwise period correct interior/ exterior, even a piece of trim seem off). Sure, you want to get the right balance of light/ dark contrast on the facade correct and not use crazy colors that weren’t around in 1890, but you’ve basically done that so I say, pick the color that you *love* not what a Victorian paint store would recommend 🙂

  9. I have often wondered if the lighter color you discovered on the second floor porch was the second story color, with the first floor being the darker color that you have used for the whole body, this tonal effect was often the case with Victorians, and the darker color us generally on the bottom. What do you think?

  10. One of the greatest challenges about paint matches from a bygone era is accommodating for the toning and aging of the sample. I have a great 1920s sample kit from National Lead Paint (Dutch Boy) Company. The colors have certainly mellowed and toned because of the linseed oil base–not to mention the effects of heat, air, and humidity on the sample. I think samples tend to be much yellower and darker than they once were. Tough to work with.

  11. Oh YES! That looks truly fantastic now! That ties everything together just perfectly!​ 😍

    Though the peachy shade did add that element of discord that you like… and that shade seemed to be what you wanted at that moment, time is always required, isn’t it, for the ultimate Ross-goal to percolate down and become evident. This is just another example of the process we witnessed in the parlour.

    Knowing that, you could well end up going through other shades yet! But as you’re fully aware of this and holding off on that scaffolding until you’re 100% sure it’ll all turn out CRISPY in the end. ​👌 ​

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