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Victorian Exterior Decoration: How to Paint Your Nineteenth-Century American House Historically Paperback – November 15, 1992

4.1 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Thanks to Moss and Winkler's research the hitherto daunting job of selecting colors for your grand old dame is now a very pleasant one."-Popular Mechanics
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Holt Paperbacks; Rev Upd edition (November 15, 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0805023135
  • ISBN-13: 978-0805023138
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.4 x 10.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #730,953 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Rosemary Thornton on May 1, 2000
Verified Purchase
This book is over 110 pages and every page has at least one picture, and most have two or three.
Beyond the good information re: color schemes, there is a lot of information in this book about the 101 details (fretwork, finials, porches, etc) of an old house.
Unfortunately, there are precious few old drawings and the ones they do have are done in muted browns and beiges. Now, I know they didn't have color photos back in those days, but I do wish they'd included more color pictures (drawings) of these old houses.
There are also some very interesting old paint ads - such as one that suggests the right house paint is *the* key to health and happiness. The book also contains plenty of written information and history, which is interesting reading.
And the photos/drawings offer a nice blend of the ostentatious Queen Annes and by contrast, the simple and modest "Builder's Style" homes.
I'm an old house purist trying to redo my simple old home as authentically as possible. This book is a good resource for that.
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I really enjoyed all the details and information so that I can paint my own Victorian home. Good color combinations, great historical information. I do wish there had been a few more photos of correctly painted homes.
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I found this to be a very good book and very educational. I am painting my 19th century house using it as a guide. In the previous review someone wrote:

"Unfortunately, there are precious few old drawings and the ones they do have are done in muted browns and beiges. Now, I know they didn't have color photos back in those days, but I do wish they'd included more color pictures (drawings) of these old houses."

This person has obviously missed the point of the book. Did you read it? Those _are_ color drawings and those "muted browns and beiges" _were_ the colors used back then. People have a stereotype of 19th century colors as supposedly being bright and contrasty; this is due to the colorist movement in San Francisco back in the 70s, but is not appropriate when seeking 19th century accuracy. The crazy row-house colors of San Francisco are modern interpretations; whereas the Victorians preferred earth tones. The authors go at length to explain this with drawings and historic reproductions that are accurate in color.

My only gripe with this book is that there should be more photographs of 19th houses painted historically. I think more photos would give home restorers more ideas to pick from.
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By Dee on December 31, 2010
If this is a subject that interests you, then this is the definitive work. It has a little history, lots of practical advice, and lots of useful pictures and diagrams. I especially love the chart with the old color names and their modern equivalents from four readily-available sources, and appreciate the references to other books for more detail. Can't put it down, and can't wait until spring to start painting.
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