A Guide to Modern Stucco Exteriors

Modernize Your Stucco

Stucco has long been used on the exteriors of houses, especially in regions like the American Southwest. In our service area throughout North Carolina and South Carolina, however, many stucco homes were built in the 1960s or 1970s and have begun to look extremely dated. Whether you currently have a stucco house and have been thinking about renovating it or you’re on the other side of the aisle and have an interest in adding stucco to your home, this guide is sure to help you.

In the next several paragraphs, you will discover some excellent ways to incorporate exterior stucco walls into a modern design scheme. To really understand how to do this, however, you must first understand the history of stucco, which is where we will begin.

When did stucco become popular in the United States?

As alluded to above, stucco has long been used in America’s desert regions, but it wasn’t until the 1930s, during an exhibit at New York City’s MoMA, that the material really started to gain traction in other parts of the country. This showing, called “The International Style: Architecture Since 1922,” focused on proving that contemporary design truly was a style in its own right. Flat roofline, horizontal windows, and stucco walls, which are all hallmarks of mid-century modern decor, were touted as being the next big thing.

How can I make stucco look fresh now?

The challenge for today’s homeowners is keeping stucco out of a mid-century rut, especially if that isn’t the aesthetic they want for their houses. Fortunately, there are a few great ways to do this. You will learn about a few of them next.

Combine stucco with another contemporary material – One of the best ways to use stucco on the exterior of your home is to couple it with a second material that has a decidedly modern look. Horizontal raw wood siding, for example, can look quite fresh alongside stucco. Work with an architect or designer to figure out how to best take advantage of your home’s lines if you’re interested in going this route with your renovation.

Paint your stucco walls a modern color – All too often, stucco exteriors are painted outdated hues, like baby blue and mustard yellow. If you’re looking to update an existing stucco exterior, one of the easiest, yet most dramatic, changes you can make is to put on a fresh coat of paint. Stark white and steel grey both have a contemporary appeal, especially when they are paired with sleek doors, handrails, and exterior hardware.

Let your stucco walls blend into the landscape – One of the reasons stucco works so well in the Southwest is that homeowners allow the scenery surrounding them to influence their exterior design choices. They often choose paint colors that let their stucco homes almost blend into the desert. The same concept can be used in North Carolina and South Carolina. If, for instance, you have a stucco home in Asheville, you might want to go with a forest green shade that will practically disappear into the evergreen forest. Or, if you’re a coastal property owner, consider a hue that will merge with the sand and surf outside your door.

At Hatch Homes, we enjoy exterior remodeling jobs, and we hope you’ll contact us soon about your stucco project. We look forward to helping you transform the appearance of your house!

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