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Our Front Door…A Bore No More

September 29, 2011
If you read my Mantel Madness post, you know that I have the good fortune to live in a house that is 115 years old.  We bought it about 7 years ago and, after a flurry of home improvement that lasted about a year, at which time we ran out of patience and money on almost the same day, we turned our focus to other pursuits.

Recently, however I’ve been bitten once again by the home improvement bug. I blame Pinterest. Don’t even get me started.  Anyway, once you’ve been bitten, you can’t walk from your car to the front door or from one room to the next without noticing all that is missing from your life in the area of home decor. It’s been fun rearranging, adding a few new touches here and there, and listening to my kids make fun of me for my latest obsession (nothing new there).

I kept coming back to our front door. I don’t know if it’s over a hundred years old, but it has a lot of the characteristics I imagine a hundred-year-old door might have (doesn’t close properly, lets in a lot of cold air, and of course can’t be replaced because it’s nowhere near a standard size). Since we moved in, I don’t think we have so much as taken a sponge or feather duster to the door, let alone considered its potential if we were to apply a little creativity and TLC. I give you Exhibit A:

Front Door Before

Can you say boring?

And Exhibit B, which is embarrassing with a capital E, to say the least.

Our guests must have been impressed

Honestly, how is it possible that I walked in and out of the door every day (most days several times) without being horrified into some sort of action?  And would it have killed me to hang a wreath up for a little bit of visual interest?  Actually, when we moved in the door did have a beautiful wreath, seemingly custom-made for the window.  But it was actually more of a housing project for birds, and having them fly in the house when we left in the morning was beyond annoying, so we took it down.  I found it and kicked it to the curb (literally); hopefully it will enjoy a second life on someone else’s door.
Old front door wreath

Take note of the gobs of cobwebs...yikes!

Well, once I discovered we had a problem, I took immediate action.  Which for me means making a bold pronouncement to my husband, latte in hand. In this case:  “We are doing something about the front door.  This weekend,  if not sooner.” Lucky for me, he had also identified this problem (in fact, now that I think about it, he may have mentioned the door to me once or twice or a hundred times over the course of 7 years), and was equally inclined to act fast. Doubly lucky for me, we agreed that we did not have the necessary fortitude funds to purchase a new door, so we would address the problem with cleaning and color.

The luckiest thing of all for me is that, in the area of color selection, my husband and I are almost always of the same mind and we are VERY decisive.  When I say VERY, I mean SCARY VERY.  Within an hour, I had brought home paint samples, we had made a decision, bought the paint, and made and eaten a sandwich.  We move fast, we two.

Work in progress

Which in this case resulted in a pretty big do-over.

After one of us spent the better part of the weekend painting the door and trim in a lovely blue and gold combination, after we clinked glasses to celebrate our accomplishment, drove in and out of the driveway admiring our work several times, and most importantly after our kids declared their unanimous and strong hatred for what we had done to their house, we were finally forced to admit that we had made a mistake we couldn’t live with, probably in our haste to get the thing done.  Back to the paint store, more chips, a little bit longer deliberation, and we decided to keep the door the same shade of blue but swap out the gold for more of a grey.  One of us went back to painting.  One of us went shoe shopping.  I’ll let you guess who did what.

A few short days later, and we love love love our door!  Even the kids aren’t complaining as loudly.  Or maybe they’re just locked in their rooms; I’m not really sure.

Now would be a good time to mention (to you, readers, not to my husband) that in the back of my mind I had influenced the door color decision in a certain direction because of my strong desire to add a Hadley welcome plaque to the front door area.  My plan was coming together brilliantly, and now it was time for me to swoop in and add the final front door touches, which included:

  • Darling Fall wreath from HomeGoods
  • Large-ish outdoor rug on year-end clearance from Lowes (I find that for our large porch space the standard “Welcome” mat is just too small)
  • Pumpkins, also from Lowes at ridiculously low prices (you should check your local store, like now)
  • Mums planted in planters rescued from the backyard, where they had fallen into ruin
  • Hadley Personalized Oval Plaque, on loan from the office.  I actually borrowed a few plaques to see what I liked, but for our space, this one seemed to work the best.  I put it in a lot of different places, but thought it looked best propped up among the other decorative items.  What do you think?

Hadley Personalized Stoneware Welcome Plaque

Now all I have to do is convince my husband to change our last name to “Jones” and we’re in business.
Because no one loves a good before-and-after photo more than yours truly, I thought I’d give you a good side-by-side look before I sign off.
Hadley front door makeover
All in all, it was a fun project, and I loved doing it knowing that we’d be participating in a Fall Link Party dedicated to “Door Decor” with some truly sensational bloggers, including the party’s hostess, Rhoda from the wonderful Southern Hospitality blog, to which you really must subscribe, if you don’t already.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Teresa permalink
    October 1, 2011 7:24 am

    love the door re-do….visiting this site per request of Emily A Clark Interiors to be eligible for her blog give-a-way! would love to have the “Boo” bowl. For two reasons, one just because it is so cute, and second, because I call my daughter “Boo” and now my grandaughter “Callie Boo”!! gotta have it!!!

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