Never underestimate the beauty of having a roof

The exterior rough framing of the house has been done for about a month and–shockingly–progress has been a lot slower without a four-man crew of professionals working over here all day. I don’t mind that fact at all because every day that only a couple of boards of fascia were hung,  or one square of roofing was put on at a time, we were saving a lot of money in labor costs.

MysteryMan might argue this point because he was the labor. I think the price was taken out of his knees and back.

These six weeks of being roofless also coincided with the six wettest, stormiest weeks I can remember around here. We’ve had multiple tornado warnings — and one that created a swath of destruction just south of us.

We’re lucky everything is still intact. Unless you count the felt on the roof.


You can see the felt over the porch on the left. I think this was after the third time MysteryMan re-felted the place. We don’t talk about the actual number of times he had to do that because his face starts to turn purple and it looks like his eyes are going to pop out of his head. Suffice it to say, too many times.

Getting to this point was extra fun. Some of you right remember the great fascia debate I was having a month ago, when we were trying to figure out if the drip-edge should match the roof or the trim.

You all confirmed what I was afraid of at the time — there is no hard-and-fast rule about the color of your drip-edge.


As you can see, we went with drip-edge that matches the fascia. Primarily because we bought the roof shingles and the drip-edge at two different places, and matching them was going to be a complete shot in the dark. Also Lauren @ Chezerby (whose house exterior makeover I LOVE, by the way – and I’m totally thinking about stealing that color of blue) made a good point that if you ever need to repaint the trim it will go a lot easier if you don’t have to worry about a little paint getting on the drip-edge.

Choosing the shingle color created another agonizing mental debate. For at least a week I spent my lunch hours stalking the houses of people who had Certainteed Driftwood or Weathered Wood roofs. I finally saw a sample of Certainteed’s Shenandoah and after googling the hell out of it to find pictures (since no one around here has that color of roof) I finally pulled the trigger and ordered them. And then gave myself an ulcer for the next week waiting for them to arrive.


I’m convinced that roof color is the hardest thing you will pick out for a number of reasons:

  1. The samples look completely different than the actual shingles on a roof, which also look completely different based on the time of day. At high noon our roof looks ashy-brown. First thing in the morning, almost black.
  2. It will affect the colors of your house now, and in the future if you decide to repaint.
  3. You’re stuck with it for upwards of 40 years. There is no “painting over” shingles.

All of this was compounded by the fact that I really wanted a cedar shake roof, but MysteryMan point-blank refused to indulge me on that. Sigh. He’s now trying to strongly persuade me not to use wavy-edged cedar siding, but he’s going to fail miserably at that. See this?


I won’t be enticed away by fiber-cement and it’s lifetime warranties. I think even if we had to reside the house every 20 years, it would be well worth it. (Hey look, MysteryMan just started banging his head against the keyboard!) The roof was MysteryMan’s project, but I’m going to lead up the installation of the siding, and that seems to be the way we’re determining who gets final say.

I felt slightly vindicated bad about the roof because the Shenandoah shingles are the triple-thick hard-to-work-with shingles, and when I finally decided that was the color MysteryMan’s eyes rolled so far back into his head they about fell out onto the floor. But I have to admit, they were just what I was looking for. Some browns, blacks, and grays in a dimensional shingle.


And with as long as all that took, I’m guessing another 3 months before the siding is done. Whew, I’m gonna need a vacation.

12 Responses

  1. I feel your pain. I had the same problem with our roof–it was an agonizing decision! I’m happy with the color I chose but I still really like the alternate color which was more warm gray-brown. Now I’m still trying to work out trim colors because I absolutely hate hate HATE the existing white gutters, soffits, fascia and storm windows, especially with our mostly red face brick. Unfortunately it’s still going to be a while before we can afford to change that.

    While I have no problem choosing colors for the interior, the exterior gives me an aneurysm!

    Your roof looks great though, and that wavy cedar IS gorgeous!! I have a hard time convincing someone in my house that what he thinks might be more “practical” is not always the best way to go! Good luck with that!

  2. It looks great so far! And I too love the wavy cedar. I have never seen that before, I can’t wait to see what that is going to look like finished.

  3. Roof looks great with a nice mix of colors. One thing learned from experience is to think about what plants, trees, etc you will have around the house in 5-10 years. These also affect the roof colors and siding colors, etc. at different times of day. Not to give you anything else to worry about–but some colors look more like baby poo in different light of day. Just sayin’ and don’t ask how I know this.

    Also, I’m siding (no pun intended) with Mystery Man on wavy siding being bad idea. It doesn’t seem to fit with the design of the home. But that’s just me looking at your gorgeous photos of the awesome house. Wavy siding makes me think of Pee Wee’s Playhouse for some reason….

    1. I couldn’t agree more! Having worked in roofing for several years, I have so many examples of where homeowners have failed to consider the surroundings of their property.

      Shingles and a few other roofing materials seemingly work with any environment. They also age beautifully, which is a plus. Although, do take some time to visualise the surrounding of your property and then consider the materials.

      Thanks for the great post!

  4. Nice! I remember picking out shingle colors…I think the one we ended up with was called “teak”, which is funny considering there is zero wood products in asphalt shingles.

    I would happily let you steal our paint color. =) It’s Benjamin Moore “soot” (we used their Aura Exterior line…which is as awesome as everyone says it is). We ended up going with a matte finish, which I mostly like, although it does show scratches and marks more easily.

  5. Ugh, picking the roof shingles was so hard. I started staring at everyone’s roof in the neighborhood to compare colors.

    I’ve already had the discussion with my dude about painting our house the same color as Chezerbey’s lovely home. I’m not winning in this battle.

  6. Lisa- Maybe he’ll go away for a long weekend and next thing you know, hey look honey, I fell and spilled a bucked of paint all over the entire house!

    Believe me when I tell you MysteryMan is scared whenever he goes on a golf trip. Like he is this weekend. Dun, dun, DUN!

  7. I think you made a great choice! Picking shingles wasn’t too tough for us because we stuck with a brand that came highly recommended and of the architectural shingles they only had one color with any real dimension. But I can see how it could be a difficult decision.

  8. Hmmm, I might be sending him up to Long Island to visit his family soon…

    Can vinyl siding be painted (sucessfully)?

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