Do you often drive around your neighbourhood and find yourself drooling over the freshly painted front doors? Making note of the bright colours and the classic neutrals. Do you dream of the day when your door can look as fabulous as those you see popping up in your ‘hood.
You my friend are suffering from ‘Door Envy’. ‘Door Envy’ or ‘DE’is considered one of the quickest and easily treatable Home Decor disease. I’d say that I’m writing you my own special prescription, but its more of a 5 step program.
Before you start with the steps, you’d better decide on a colour. If you need help with that check out this post, and if that’s still not enough you can always hire me for an exterior consultation! I’d love to help choose a custom colour scheme to make your home sing!
Step 1- Supplies! You will definitely need the following, I will explain how and when below.
Step 2- Prep. Guys I cannot say PREP enough. If you want a beautiful, lasting paint job you have to put in the work. It doesn’t really take that long, and makes all the difference in the world- I promise! I started this door by turning on a space heater. I used the exterior paint Ben by Benjamin Moore, and it’s good as long as the surface is 5°C. The temp went down to 5° that night, and went up to 16° that day but I really wanted to make sure conditions were right.
Take off the hardware, its easier than painting around, and scraping it later might take off the original finish. Take note to how it comes off though, you’ll need to put it back on later. Once the hardware is gone start sanding the door with a sanding sponge. Depending on what the door is like previously you may need anything from a fine to a course grit. Fear not, you don’t have to sand the old paint off. Just give it some tooth, something for the primer to grab a hold of.
Step 3- Prime. I swear by Stix Waterborne Bonding Primer. Its an interior/exterior super bonding primer, you can find at Benjamin Moore. It doesn’t have a strong odor and with soap and water clean up, I really can’t ask for more. Prime using your brush first to do the panels, then roll the flat surfaces. As you can see the roller handle I was using was majorly gummed up, so it just smeared the primer on. If this was paint it would have been a major problem, but didn’t seem to be a big deal where primer was concerned. Right after this I ran out and bought a new handle, ready for paint!
Step 4- Paint! Start by choosing the paint that is right for you. I touched on that a bit above, choosing Ben by Benjamin Moore in a low-lustre finish. This was super important for this client in particular because a low-lustre is a lot more forgiving, and is fabulous for hiding those minor imperfections that previous paint, dents and dings that may happen over time. Working with this brave family, and an amazing new throw pillow for the front porch rocking chair, we chose something a little wild, Peony (2079-30). Again, with the low-lustre finish you’re really getting a beautiful true colour!
Next make sure your paint is shaken, and shaken well. This is especially important if your colour is one with a lot of tint in it. Like the primer you’re going to paint in the panels first, then using a microfiber roller, fill in the flat parts of the door. In between coats let dry fully. I finished this door, in this colour in 3 coats but after the 3rd I gave the door another light sand, and a 4th coat just to ensure a perfect finish.
Third coat, before sand.
Step 5- Finishing touches. This is when you’re going to really make that door shine! Clean up and re-install the door hardware, add a beautiful wreath, (this one my client picked up at Michaels, and how appropriate, sports beautiful peonies!) put up some hanging baskets, the gorgeous Moroccan-style pillow that started it all sits in the beautiful black rocking chair. Basically tie in that new door with anything that is purposeful, or brings you joy!
And voila! That’s all it takes! One day, if its dry and warm enough you can likely get it done in an afternoon. You’ve got this, trust me.
**Huge!! Thank you to the Mac family for allowing me to document our journey to the perfect front door. You guys seriously rock!**
And before I go, a couple before, and afters… for good measure!
If you decide to take on your own front door I’d love to hear from you! Comment, and share pictures – can’t wait to see!