Karen said she has grown to like the quirky design (Image: Matt Gilley/Plymouth Live)

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A mum was told to "avert her eyes" when she returned home from a holiday to find her husband had painted the outside of their home in bright multi-colour blocks "as a surprise".

Karen Goldsmith and her husband Mike have lived in the house in Plymouth since 1984, and until recently the exterior walls had been painted grey.

Following a family holiday to Albufeira in Portugal, Mike fell in love with the colourful buildings on the harbour and wanted to bring the bright design back home, Plymouth Live reports. The only problem was Karen didn't share his vision.

But when Karen later travelled to London with her daughter and grandson for a few days, Mike seized his opportunity to give their home the makeover he had dreamed of.

The neighbours thought Mike was joking at first – but then "egged him on"
(Image: Matt Gilley/Plymouth Live)

It's now had the paint job for two years
(Image: Matt Gilley/Plymouth Live)

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Karen said: "We went to Portugal on holiday and he was inspired by the harbour, places were decorated like this.

"He has wanted to do it since, but I wouldn't let him. Then, I went to London for a few days with my daughter and grandson.

"We got back, and, well… Oh my God. My daughter said the same, and told me to avert my eyes.

"But the more I see it, the more I like it. It'll be left like this now."

The kitchen assistant said the neighbours thought her husband had shown them a colour palette to choose from, and assumed he was joking when he said: "No, all of them."

Even the garden ornaments got a makeover
(Image: Matt Gilley/Plymouth Live)

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But the house has now been painted in a patchwork of colours for two years, and Karen said she has grown to love their unique home – with the light blue being her favourite shade that features.

It took Mike about two weeks to finish off the project, with their grandchildren even getting involved by painting the animal ornaments in the garden in any bright colours they desired.

Speaking about the "surprise" Mike gave her, 59-year-old Karen said: "He’s always been a bit like that. You never know what you’re going to get.

"You get a few reactions, people taking pictures.

"It’s nice, some people even knock to ask what made us do it. If taxi drivers pull up, they’ll take a picture of it."

And luckily the neighbours have been supportive of the look, with Karen saying some of them even encouraged Mike to press on with the plans.

"They egged him on a bit," she added. "Most of them around here say it cheers them up.

"It's lovely area and it's quiet. We have really good neighbours, we're very lucky."