Saturday, November 10, 2012

7 Year Itch: Front Door Refresher

I got a couple emails (literally, two) from people asking me to blog about my Pinterest projects. Since I am writing a blog, I am going to go ahead and do that!

This was not my first project but it is my favorite completed project so far: my painted front door.

Our house was a new construction when we bought it.  We did not design/build the house - it was a spec home and was just built and then put up for sale.  It was (is) our first home and it seemed so shiny and beautiful and fabulous when we bought it just over 7 years ago. know.  You can only look at the same stuff for so long before you start to itch for change.  I am having the 7 year itch, but instead of wanting to cheat on my husband, I just want to change everything about my house. 

I'd say that it is probably a better choice for our marriage but it is proving to be a lot more expensive. 

Being a spec house, everything in our house is the most basic, builder-grade.  It is well constructed but the carpet is getting yuck.  The faucets are ugly.  The lighting fixtures look like boobs.*  The doorknobs are shiny gold.  Everything is oak.**  I think this is all worse now because I am home all day.  And the annoyance is magnified as I stare at this stuff all day.

One day I just decided that I was going to paint the front door.  We have the most basic front door - white, no window.  Gold knobs and lock.  We bought a new storm door with brushed nickel, which started the Great $1,000 Debacle of 2012***  I kept looking at the storm door because it looked so nice and then I started to become annoyed at the state of our front door.  It was just kind of, blah.

So I decided to paint it red and then went to the store that same day to buy supplies.  I am horrible with impulse buying!  And with impulse Pinteresting apparently!

Of course I suck at blogging and never thought to take a before picture.  But here is one of Olivia on her first day of preschool, acting adorbs despite the fact that she has to live in a house with a white front door:

And I just noticed how ugly the doorbell looks.
::adds to list::

Here is what I did.  This guide from Young House Love**** was my inspiration, but our door is aluminum (I think?) and theirs is wood. 

Here's what I used:

A foam roller
Sand paper (fine grit, I think mine was 320?)
Quart of Valspar Duramax Paint (Color is vip)
Windex, Paper Towels

Here's what I did:

First, I picked up about 45 red paint samples and taped them over the door.  We looked at them in all different kinds of light and picked our favorite.  I almost didn't even bring our color home because in the store it almost looked orange, but with the way the light hits our door it looks bright red where all of the true reds looked more maroon.

Next, we removed all of the hardware.

Then, I sanded the entire door lightly.  This took me maybe 10 minutes total.  Then I wiped it down with Windex to get rid of all of the dust.

Finally, I painted!  I used a foam roller for the entire thing - even the panes!  The third coat looked good, but the fourth coat looked perfect.  I started at about 7 a.m. and by 8 p.m. everything was dry and we were able to put the doorknob and dead bolt back on. 

It was incredibly easy to do, and that is coming from the least handy person in the whole world.  A new front door is not in the budget right now, but painting our existing door cost under $20 and has totally satisfied me for now!


*We have two of these on the ceiling as you go upstairs, and I can't help but think "tits" every time I walk up there.  Because I am classy.

**I'm not an oak hater, but did you know that people really hate oak?  Like, really really.  Mostly I just covet all of these dark and sleek looking cabinets that everyone has now.  Don't worry, I'm not puking in my mouth over your oak or anything.

***Ever think to yourself, "lets change all of our doorknobs from gold to brushed nickel - it won't cost that much."  If you did, you are an idiot, as am I.  The purchase of a $300 storm door lead to the additional $300 purchase of doorknobs and locks, and then the ADDITIONAL purchase of a $300 kitchen faucet and then a new $100 half bath faucet because hey!  Why not at this point?!

****Do you read their blog?  Ewmahgod.  They are so adorable and handy it makes me want to cry and also be their best friend.


Should you feel the need to indulge my attention whoring further, follow me on Pinterest: click here.

And, while I still don't "get it," I am trying to embrace Twitter: click here.


Mrs. Higrens said...

When we looked at our new house the front door was black and it was so depressing. Now it's red (we made the seller paint it - long story) and makes me happy every time I come up the driveway.

I am living with light oak floors which are not my top choice but I'd rather spend the $ it would take to stain them dark on more fun things like replacing the currently brass exterior lights with brushed nickel.

Valeta said...

I love the red door. And the adorable preschooler. I bet our crappy HOA would never allow it.

Mrs.Joe said...

I was all, "I wonder what kind of lights make her think of tits?" The answer is the exact lights I have in my basement. And now I will forever think of tits when I see them , also.

Putter Pie said...

I'm much more interested in Olivia's scrunchie and side ponytail. TOTALLY RAD!

Eva.G said...

We bought a spec house too! We have the same exact lights that look like boobs. Except I didn't notice that before and now that's all I'll be able to think about. So thanks for that!

We also have oak the kitchen and the baths. Except now we don't have oak in the kitchen anymore because of the Remodel of 2012. Now we have a fabulous, open concept kitchen with all the fixins.....and we have GREY cabinets, which is the new thing (don't go dark, it's going out of style, btw). You should listen to me because apparently I am a kitchen design professional.

And......we also repainted our boring and bland front door! Ours is purple. I don't know how on earth we lived for 3 years with a white door. How did I never notice how hideous it was?!

Wow, I didn't realize we have so much in common. Spec houses, painted front doors, oak cabinets, IVF! (Ok, not IVF a few months we will unless we get pregnant that's going to happen, right!) What's your next project going to be? Because it may be the same as our next project because we! :P

CAM said...

I am so freaking happy you are blogging every day, am loving it!!

The door looks fantastic. I also adore YHL and I also want to be their best friends.

Amy said...

We have the same lights. I knew exactly what you were talking about.

areyoukiddingme said...

If you really want new fixtures (well, door knobs and such anyway), you might want to check ebay. My husband found a guy when we were building our house and got all of our brushed nickel lever style door knobs for cheaper than Home Depot or Lowe's. He probably bargained the guy down too, though.

I like your new red door...

PJ said...

I started reading YHL when I was pregnant. Love their style! To be able to make a living from DIYing and writing about it, can you imagine!?!?...

Did you see the dollhouse they did for Clara? Could you just die, it's so cute?

I really need to paint my front door. Although the wrought iron railing on the porch just collapsed this week. Which do you think I should do first? :)

Your red door is awesome. I'm thinking orange or plum - just to be weird and different. I've pinned a few, actually.

Annegirrl said...

Oh yeah. We had the great hardware change of 2009 to brushed nickel. Then we got our new front door with black hardware. The agony of agreeing to leave those brushed nickel knobs on the back doors and the pole building door... The pain it causes me to see them... You can imagine, I'm sure.

Now that we've closed in our old screen porch that new exterior door sports lovely black hardware as well. 3 more doors to go and then I can suggest ORBing the gold knobs on all the interior doors and then promptly rush myself to the hospital when the husband tries to kill me.

Once he and recover from the door hardware upgrade, the brass/gold boob lights and builder grade chandelier will go as well. Send cards to the hospital if I live through it.

Becky said...

Damn it, now I can think of nothing but painting our ugly, white front door.

Lins said...

Our house that we purchased in Indiana (our first home) was the model home. It had all cheap builder options. Luckily about 5 years ago the day after Mother's day our washer came unhooked from something and it flooded our kitchen, laundry room, dining room, and family room. We got all new carpet in every room, hardwood floors in kitchen, laundry, and entry. The guys doing the work on our house also wrote in that we needed new cabinets and countertops so that fixed our ugly. Our front door was just okay but I never tried to fix it. We did purchase a storm door so that helped cover the ugly a bit! :)