In need of an inexpensive home makeover? A can of paint, a day and some minimal painting skills are all you need to quickly and instantly change the look of your home.
That’s all it takes, because you are only painting one thing: The Front Door.
Now is the perfect time. It’s warm, it’s about to be summer and you can pick a color that you will keep for a couple of months or a few years. It’s your choice. And if you’re not into the DIY mode (present company included), you can buy the door already painted or have someone paint it for you.
Here is my inspiration: a poster called Doors of Dublin. The lore was that after Queen Victoria’s husband died, she demanded that all doors be painted black in respectful mourning. Of course, the Irish rebelled and painted their doors all the colors of the rainbow. And what a rainbow it is.
CASE IN POINT: MY FRONT DOOR
My door is just so boring and basic: black with cream trim around the exterior of my house. Once you notice a painted front door, it’s all you can think about. I have seen red and dark green doors, but not much else. I was going to do orange, but changed my mind. Instead, I decided to go for it and do a bright kelly green. I went a little bold, a little bright. It’s just paint, right? It can be changed.
Your front door is subject to the elements, so an acrylic latex paint with an oil-based primer is recommended. This paint by Porter Paints has the paint and primer in one, which means all the pre-existing paint on the door will be covered. The color I picked is Blarney Stone by Porter Paints.
There is a right way to paint your door. Inner panels are painted first, then you work your way outward. A perfect “paint by numbers” tutorial is shown below.
The optimal time to paint is obviously when it is warm and not too humid (like our current weather). This allows the paint to dry faster.
You can either take the door off its hinges and paint it elsewhere or paint it right there on the hinges. Remove the handles and any hardware on the door, such as door knockers, kick plates, etc. Wipe the door down and make sure it is a good, clean surface for painting. The door will need two coats of paint with adequate drying between the first and second coats. A hair dryer is a quick and easy way to get it dry in a jiffy.
The finished product
After a few hours, we were ready for the big unveil … Hello, New Front Door!
Compare the before and after. Look how the new color makes the landscaping and plants around the front entrance pop.
With so many color choices, it’s hard to pick. Your best bet is just to select your favorite color and go with it. Most likely, it will match the façade of your house. If you need to replace your door completely, you can buy prepainted doors in many different colors. Check out these bright doors at The Door Store and Windows. And we love their unique door knockers!
Here are some examples of other colored front doors around town:
I leave you with this other tale of why the Irish painted their doors:
Some say it wasn’t a reaction to Queen Victoria’s black door mandate at all. They claim it was a way to make their front door recognizable to the menfolk who were wandering home from the pubs late at night, possibly under the influence of too much Guinness … to help them know which home to enter. Hopefully, that won’t be a reason for you to paint your door, but it does make for a good story, don’t you think?