15 November 2016

Black French Doors: Before and After

The french doors in our kitchen were definitely one of the selling points for us when buying our house. I love natural sunlight and the thought of pulling both of those doors wide open on a warm day and letting the sun stream into our kitchen with a view of our backyard was just so dreamy to me. 

Since moving in, we definitely get a ton of use out of these doors. They lead to our deck so during the summer they're usually wide open with the kids running in and out of the house. It's pretty common to see our storm doors covered in holiday themed decals or window marker drawings. Plus our pup spends a good amount of time watching the squirrels and bunnies hopping about our yard. (Don't worry, our old girl can't catch them.)

We certainly get a ton of sunlight, especially in the morning. After two years of draping towels over the doors during breakfast to block the sun I finally invested in some window treatments. I searched for some time before deciding on these curtains from DaniDesignsCo on Etsy. I wanted something that wouldn't permanently block the light, that I could fully open during the days, but would provide privacy at night as well as when the sun was just a little too bright to sit at the table. These curtains are so easy to install (velcro!), within 20 minutes of opening the package they were on the doors. 

You can see from photos in her shop that the curtains fully extend down to cover the entire window, while keeping the doors themselves uncovered. 

I had been talking about repainting the doors since we moved in. The white side didn't look bad, but could use a fresh coat. What bothered me most on that side was the yellowed plastic dividers. At first I wanted to remove them completely (think Dana's kitchen doors). We would need to do some repair work and figure out a replacement trim for the edges. I honestly wasn't even thinking black doors to begin with, just wanted white and bright. 

One thing that we either didn't notice or didn't really care about at the time of house hunting was the condition of the OUTSIDE of the doors, which faces our deck. When we were looking at the house it was the middle of a snowy winter so we weren't thinking about how the outside of the doors would look when open in the kitchen. Well, here is how they look....

Yikes, right? Yellowed, cracking plastic and a very hastily done red paint job. Definitely not the fresh clean look I had been dreaming about. I've been giving dirty looks to this side of the doors since we moved in almost two and a half years ago. 

Now before you get excited about a dramatic before and after of the red doors, I have to admit I haven't tackled this side of the doors - yet! They are going to need a little more TLC before I can paint and since the weather has turned chilly we don't really see them as much. I wanted to tackle the inside first since that's the side we see all day long. But they will be done soon and you will definitely see after photos. 

A few weeks ago I stumbled up this photo on Pinterest, and immediately my mind was made up. Keeping the dividers and going black on the doors. I didn't so much ask Jordan for his opinion, but just warned him that he just may come home one day to black doors. He was down. I'm lucky that there isn't much he doesn't trust me with when it comes to the house, and our tastes and pretty similar for the most part.

Once more time, here's an old picture from a previous kitchen post:

So while the doors don't look bad on this side, I feel like they didn't do anything for the kitchen. A lot of the kitchen has changed since this photo, most noticeably the cabinet colors (more on that before and after in another post).  What you don't notice at first from the before photos was just how bad the hinges were. We replaced the door handles and deadbolts on all doors as soon as we moved in for both aesthetic and safety purposes since the house was a rental property and we didn't know how many keys were floating around.

We also bought new hinges but never got around to changing them. Once I started painting I was glad we had that hardware already on hand because leaving the paint covered old hinges was not going to work. Once of my biggest frustrations when moving into a house is when you being to discover all the little shortcuts previous homeowners took that you now need to fix. 

After a few days (let's face it projects take a bit longer when you have kids), we had fresh beautiful black french doors in our kitchen.

:) :) :) :) :)
Am I right?

It's been about two weeks and each time I look at them I think how much I really love the change. Not only do they look nice, but they make the kitchen FEEL different. It's so important to me how a room FEELS because I'm spending so much time in our house as a work from home mom. If something doesn't feel cozy to me, it doesn't feel like home.

Another before: 

And after:

The new hinges look so much better, too, right? 

Purchasing a new kitchen table is going to be next on our list of things to tackle in the kitchen (and hopefully we will be doing so within a few months). This set is probably a decade old and we are slowly losing sturdy chairs and we've resorted to placemats to cover the condition of the top of the table.

Since the table, floors, and top of our fauxdenza are all the same shade of wood, I am leaning towards a lighter, possibly gray toned wood. I love the look of this one from Target with a bench replacing the metal stools and some upholstered or metal white chairs on the other side. We also may hit up a local farmer's market and see what options they have.

But until then, these pretty doors are a nice distraction from the old table, right?

I just love them.

Since taking the after photos, I put the curtains back on the doors. While I really love how they look without window treatments, the sun comes in so bright in the mornings that we can't even sit at the table to eat breakfast. I searched for a while looking for window treatments that I liked and these are honestly the only ones I came upon that fit what I wanted, so back they went.

They don't look bad at all, although I'm considering swapping the grey and white stripes for a solid black pair to blend more into the door.  

What do you all think?

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