Wednesday, October 4, 2017

New Laundry Door

I have a new door update in this whole, "let's turn a hallway into a mudroom" situation we have underway right now, but this time for the laundry room!  The hallway is about 18 feet long and has 4 doors (entry door not shown below) and the laundry room is roughly 10' x 12'  and has 3 doors! It's madness....doors EVERYWHERE!

It has been especially frustrating in the laundry room because this space has doors that actually open up into each other. With that being said it's hard for me to ever really complain about my laundry room because it's in a convenient place, has a laundry shoot (hello, YAY!!!), a big storage closet and a window.  So it may not be the prettiest (...for now ;)...) but I was lugging stuff down to a sometimes wet and always spooky basement in our last house, so all in all this space is a dream. However, when the entry door has to be shut to be able to access the storage closet, something has to be done. And that something was a barn door.

I love barn doors and Brent and I have long talked about installing one in this space. In my opinion barn doors are the perfect solution when you need separation but privacy is not necessary. Barn doors don't offer a lot in the privacy department, so installing one for a bathroom or a bedroom can get awkward, but the only ones needing privacy in a laundry room are the dust bunnies, making it a great space for a barn door.

With this in mind, we headed to Scotts Antique to find a door. We wanted something old and unique with cool detailing and figured Scotts would be the perfect place to find such a treasure. We dug around and mentally tagged several contenders. As we were walking around discussing the options we noticed a trailer off in the distance with doors inside.... And in that trailer we found what was quite possibly the ugliest door (in terms of color scheme) I've ever seen.

Now, at first sight this guy definitely had a face only a mother could love, but as we examined the actual details buried behind the red and yellow paint we realized this door was exactly what we were looking for. It checked all the boxes - it was old, circa early 1900's from Ohio and was oozing with unique + cool detailing, specifically in the form of a giant oval window with beveled glass. It was the right size and reasonably priced at $120 so we loaded it up and brought it home.

The official Before....

Once home we began the process of removing the paint so we could see what kind of wood we were dealing with. The door was painted differently on each side. One side was the yellow/red combo you see above and the other was a light yellow color. We started with the ugliest side and brushed on this Stripper all over the door. I don't know if you guys have ever used this stuff before, but it was fascinating. The thick paste is so strong the paint literally bubbles up almost immediately and then scrapes off. This took several rounds because there were so many layers of paint. For the other side of the door Brent tried a different technique. He used a heat gun to to melt the paint and release it's seal from the door. This approach was less messy and seemed to work better.

With the majority of the paint off, we began sanding the door. Interestingly, the light yellow side of the door had been stained at one time, so as we began sanding we were left with a really beautiful finish. The red/yellow side was fine, but the more we sanded the more of a light pine wood we got. I think it will naturally darken over time, but the other side was definitely prettier and, lucky for us, the side of the door that would naturally face the hallway!

The last step was using a razor to clean the glass and then windex-ing the heck out of it until it was all shiny and new.

Next, Brent got the barn door hardware mounted. We purchased this hardware from Home Depot. It was relatively simple and quick to install, but once we hung the door up we realized we would have to cut the backband (moulding that sits around the door casing) off because it was too deep and the door hardware was hitting it.  So, Brent cut it off and we caulked the space and will paint when we paint everything else to make this little surgery spot go away.

We could literally not be happier with the end results here. Not only does this door add so much life and additional interest to this space, but the door is truly one of a kind and SUCH an improvement from the way we found it. Plus, best of all, it functions like a dream and really makes the laundry room so much more efficient.

All photos are my own. 

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