How to Add Personality to Your Home's Exterior

Make your home represent you on the outside as well as it does on the inside.

Everyone wants their home to reflect them in a meaningful way. While options abound for the interior, incorporating personality into a home’s exterior, however, is much easier said than done. To learn about some of the different ways you can make your home’s exterior represent you, ESTATENVY consulted Rodger Owen, president of design-build company BGD&C. Owen and his team build luxury homes, each of which is completely custom, exteriors and all.

BGD&C’s three decades of experience executing each of its client’s unique visions has given Owen a wealth of expertise in nailing the personality aspect of a home’s facade. Here are his tips on some of the best ways to make your home stand out.

Mix materials

“We are seeing traditional materials being used in a more transitional or contemporary style with strong lines and very simplified, minimalistic detailing,” Owen said. “As with the rest of the design world, materials such as brick and limestone are moving away from more earthly palettes and instead toward cooler gray tones.”

Owen also noted mixing materials extends beyond siding to windows as well. The emerging industrial trend is producing results like glass mixed with steel and clad frames, often painted black or very dark gray. Focusing on exterior materials is a great way to get creative without sacrificing practicality, too.

“I think anytime you are remodeling, you need to keep home value in mind,” Owen said. “Upgrading the materials used on the exterior to the best quality possible can significantly change the appearance of the home, as well as add to its value.”

Big, bold doorways

If he had to choose a single exterior feature most capable of bringing personality to a home, Owen said he’d have to go with the front door.

A front door is the first impression of a home, and it can make a statement about what style will carry through once you open the door,” he said. “A lot can be said with the size, color, material, and detailing of a door.”

To further illustrate his point, Owen told the story of a home he built for a client that was of traditional, refined Tuscan style. His team had an artisan create custom, oversized glass and metal exterior doors with intricate ironwork. Approaching the doors, Owen explained, gave you a sense of the level of detail and craftsmanship you would encounter throughout the home, creating seamlessness of style.

“Large floor-to-ceiling doors and windows are some of my favorite features to design because of the way they can visually expand the space while also connecting interior to exterior,” Owen said.

Find opportunity in your front yard

As for one of the most fun and unique things he’s designed, Owen told the story of a front yard fountain requested by a client.

“The owners wanted a custom water fountain at the front sidewalk that their neighbors could stop and let their dogs drink from,” he said. “The fountain was hand-carved out of limestone and featured a dog’s head that spit water into the drinking pool.”

This unique feature, Owen continued, was the perfect complement to the home’s traditional exterior, the quirky fountain providing a small glimpse into the spirit of the people and design on the interior of the home, which is more fun and didn’t take itself too seriously.