Choosing Colors
From: Randy Sailer (
Date: Thu, 15 Jul 2004 09:49:55 -0700 (PDT)
A couple of months ago, I asked for advice and suggestions on how our community (28 households) could choose exterior colors for our homes. I received a bunch of useful advice and suggestions.

I thought I would share what we came up with....

Having tried to make floor choices at a recent meeting, the group realized the difficulty of trying to come to consensus on essentially matters of individual taste. We tend to end up in unusual and uncomfortable voting schemes.

Based on those suggestions and the experiences of others, our design committee recommended the following process to our community:

We assigned a color committee that consisted of 3 community members plus our architect.

 A) Group (community) agrees on a theme (ie. colors of the forest).
B) Forward images of great color schemes – houses/photos to the color committee.
 C) Color committee propose 4 palettes (a palette would be used on one
    home; there would be 4 different color palettes in the community)
 D) Group reviews and comments on 4-palette proposal.
 E) Color committee revises as they deem appropriate.
 F) Final four presented to whole group for individual palette section
selection. Ask people to be as flexible as possible in their first and second choices for palettes, and express their level of flexibility in the selection. Homeowners can also veto certain palettes for their home
    if necessary.
G) The architect will lay out the color scheme based on choices in F above to create
    great visual and architectural interest.

Our architect introduced the discussion of colors and asked us (the community) to trust him. We consensed on the process above. We believe it will get us a great set of interesting colors that will express the artistic and design sensibilities of the community.

Note: After consensing on the process above, no further consensus is required to move forward. There is discussion and lots of input available.

After we agreed on the above, we talked for good chunk of time about what our theme should be and more importantly how people felt about different kinds of color schemes. Our architect took notes madly.

In a couple of weeks, we will reach step D.

Randy Sailer
Rocky Hill Cohousing
Northampton, MA

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