10 Tips for Painting Your Front Door

  10 tips for picking your front door color

I'm never ready for anything--it's always too soon. The deadlines come earlier than they should (In my opinion) and never once have I not wanted one last cup of coffee before I get the day started.

Obviously getting myself out of the door at all is a monumental task--every, single, time. Speaking of doors, we have a brand new door--and guess what I'm doing? That's right--choosing the paint color. I've come up with a list of ten things to help me make the decision--and I'm sharing them with you right here.

1. The quality of the paint really, really, really does make a difference. This is not to say that less expensive options aren't an okay choice--but there's a good reason why Farrow & Ball is twice the price of Sherwin Williams and it has more to do with the size of the business than anything. The former has approximately 132 paint colors to chose from, while most commercial brands offer somewhere in the 1,000s. And in the words of Farrow & Ball themselves, "There's a true alchemy to our paints. It’s the high levels of pigment, rich resin binders, and the high refractory nature of our key ingredients that produces that signature immersive depth of colour." Read more.

2. As a follow-up to number one, working with a small brand also provides the unique opportunity to work one-on-one with craftsmen and women who consider this to be their life calling. As well as the fact that smaller brands have the ability to make changes that will be of immediate benefit to the environment as well as to the use. For example, Real Milk Paint is probabaly the most eco-friendly paint company in the world. They now have an additive that makes their paint durable enough to be used outdoors. Read more.

3. Pay attention to the paint finish. There are usually about 4 to 5 different finishes no matter which brand you're talking about. Finish has a lot to do with not only the appearance, but also with the durability. Aimee Desrosiers, Director of Marketing for Behr, says, "From an aesthetic standpoint, sheen creates visual interest and from a practical standpoint, the right sheen can help extend the life of the paint job," she says. (via HGTV)

4. Don't over order--a small quart is generally more than enough for a front door. If you do have leftover paint, you can save it by placing a piece of plastic wrap over the open can, spray with cooking spray, put the lid on and turn the can over onto it's top. You can also save brushes and rollers by wrapping them in plastic wrap and paper towels.

5. This is important--I've learned my lesson many times--do your prep work. And this is why I always prefer to use a pro that I can trust. With that being said, make sure it's a nice dry day--even if the painter is on a schedule and can't fit you in until next month--do not paint a door on a wet day. You will regret it.

6. When it's brand new door, use primer before installing, but don't paint until after it's in the frame. There will be banging. It will be a problem.

7. Test the colors once the door is in-place. This is the only way you'll know if the color works--shadows, light, everything will change the color. Make sure you like it before you make the commitment.

8. Don't think that you shouldn't worry about eco-friendly paint because it's outside your home. Are you kidding me? You and your children will touch that door millions of times, and the off-gassing will most certainly enter your home. Most contractors and painters still don't get it. They still think I'm a pain in the ass because I ask for no or low-VOC. You'd think in 2014 the eyerolling would stop, but it hasn't. I'm also thinking about them, and this is the thanks I get...seriously, there's an alarming number of painting and building industry pros who have developed serious health issues, including chronic headaches, asthmas, and worse. Really, think about it.

9. Consider painting the door and the sidelights (if you have them) the same color. I didn't even consider this until I saw a picture where it actually looks quite nice. It really does create a cohesive look to the front that I quite like.

10. Remember, if you absolutely hate it, you can always have it painted again.





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