When we purchased our home back in June we knew one of the first projects we wanted to do was to paint our front door. The color of the door had faded over time and didn’t provide much curb appeal. The front door is the first impression of our home & we wanted our home to feel welcoming from the moment a guest rings the door bell. Nick and I both love the color blue and it’s present in other areas of our home, so we set out to find the perfect blue that would complement the exterior color of our home and provide instant curb appeal. After getting a few samples we settled on Hampton Surf by Valspar. Then we (not so) patiently waited for a cooler day to start our project! We are thrilled with the way it turned out and can’t believe that such a small change totally transformed the front of our home. Keep reading to see the before and after photos and tips for how to paint your front door! We’re already looking forward to sharing more home projects with you!
Supplies you will need:
- all-purpose cleaner
- cleaning cloth
- painter’s tape
- sand paper
- drop cloth or newspaper for floor
- exterior paint & primer
- paint brushes
- paint tray or bucket
tips for painting your front door
MAKE SURE YOU DO IT ON A COOLER DAY | Because the door will have to remain open for most of the day, make sure you choose a day where it’s not too hot or cold. We started our project in the morning so that we would have plenty of time to allow for drying between coats. It also gave the door plenty of time to dry before closing it for the evening.
CLEAN YOUR DOOR BEFORE PAINTING | It’s important to clean your door very well before starting your paint project. Since it’s an exterior door there is plenty of build up of dust, debris, etc. on the door. We cleaned our door with an all-purpose cleaner first. I followed with a wet cloth and dried it with a towel before we began to paint. I also sanded a few spots on the door where there were imperfections.
DON’T FORGET THE PAINTER’S TAPE | We kept the door on the hinges while painting it (makes it so much easier!) so we used painter’s tape to cover the hinges. We took off all of the hardware since we will likely be switching it out soon & filled the holes with painters tape. If you aren’t planning to remove your hardware you can easily put tape over it to protect it.
USE AN EXTERIOR PAINT & PRIMER | We chose to use an exterior paint that had primer already in it for a few reasons. We weren’t sure what kind of paint was currently on the door. We wanted to prime the door to make sure the paint would stick to it properly. Having to prime adds additional time and steps to the project, so having a paint & primer combo easily saved an hour or more!
USE A TRAY OR BUCKET WHEN PAINTING | I was originally going to paint right out of the paint can but I could envision the mess if I accidentally spilled it (omg!) so I opted to paint from this handy paint bucket that my dad told me about! I purchased a liner for it so that I can continue to use this bucket for future paint projects.
PAINT STRATEGICALLY & QUICKLY | When doing some research on the best way to paint our front door I came across quite a few diagrams with the order to paint the front door. It proved to be extremely helpful. I’m sharing the order of how we did our front door below! We painted quickly and each took on different sections so that the paint wouldn’t start to dry or get sticky. Once it starts to dry it’s easier to clump and see brush strokes.
We ended up doing two coats to achieve the color that we wanted on the door. In between coats we waited about an hour and a half to allow the coat to dry. Since we were painting the door a darker color than it was we didn’t’ have to paint extra coats. If you’re going from dark to light, you may need an extra coat or two to fully cover the door.
Total project time: 4-6 hours (2 hours prepping & painting, 2+ hours drying)
step-by-step guide on how to paint your front door
Below is the exact order we painted our front door! I did quite a bit of research prior to painting to ensure that you wouldn’t be able to see paint strokes, etc. I created this step-by-step guide below in case you will be painting your door soon, too! It seems like a lot of steps, but it goes by quickly, promise! Be sure to paint in the direction of the grain as every door is different! 🙂
What do you think?! We absolutely love the way our door turned out and it makes such a big difference! We added this monogrammed door knocker and it adds even more to the door!