House For Six

Graphic Painted Interior Door: The How-To

Deme Crinion4 Comments
On Friday, I shared our Pinboard to Home project for February:  a very bright, very cheerful painted interior door.  I was a little nervous about going with such a bold color, but every time I look at it, I love it even more.  It's in a far corner of our home just off the kitchen, and having that happy door peaking out from the pass through just makes me smile!

Today we're all about the nitty gritty of how we tackled the design and painting.   I knew I wanted something graphic, and a tape/paint combo seemed the easiest way to get a linear design with some contrast. And the safest for a door that sees a lot of traffic and less than gentle hands.

From all these color samples, we finally settled on the red/coral color ("Berrylicious" by Valspar).

We thought it would be a nice transition to the laundry area since it played well with the other coral accents in the (now finished) kitchen and breakfast nook.

Once the color was decided, I taped off the door handle and gave the whole door a good coat of Kilz primer.   I could have gone with a darker primer (which may have saved me some time in the end) but the white primer would end up being my white stripes.

Now, I only did one coat of primer, which did not cover up the paint samples completely.  I could have done another coat, but the paint samples were a good indicator for when I had achieved full coverage on the paint.   Once I could no longer see them or their outline, I knew we were good.

As for the design, I really loved the graphic element of these trellis doors and wanted to go with something similar for ours.


I sketched out what I had in mind, and realized that if I used the four corners of the door as starting points, then the simple graphic only required two additional measurements.  Win for laziness simplicity!

I first measured and marked the halfway/center point on each side of the door.  I put a small piece of tape centered over that mark and another small piece of tape near the corner.  I wanted the center of the red stripe to run from the corner tip of the door to my marked center.
Instead of using a sealing technique for painting stripes like we did for our ombre striped wall, we chose Frog Tape for this project because of the rave reviews on straight lines with no paint bleed-through.  I lined up one piece of tape on top of the spacers and another strip below them, so the center point was right in between the two taped strips.

I did the same thing with the bottom corner of the door to the same center point, and then removed the spacers.

I did the exact same thing on the other side and was left with this:
Once I was sure I liked the placement of the tape, I ran my fingernail around all the edges, pressing firmly to seal them all down.

It was finally time to paint!  I used a small brush to get in the narrow places around the door handle that the roller could not reach and to cut in along the bottom edge.  Then, I used a 4 inch foam roller designed for doors and cabinets to paint the rest of the door.

The first coat was up and I could tell we were in for a long night.  Since the door is flat, I used really thin coats to avoid drip marks or streaks and for the best shot at even coverage. 

I left the door propped open to dry (there's a hook on the back of the door that latches to the storage closet behind it), and waited about 1 hr in between coats.

Since I knew I would be coming back shortly to paint again, I just covered my tray, brush and roller tightly with Press N' Seal.  This kept the paint from drying up and saved me from having to clean and dry my supplies between each coat. (When I'm using a larger tray and brushes, I usually cover the tray with Press N' Seal and individually wrap the brush and roller tightly with cling wrap).

After the fifth coat of paint, those sample spots finally started to disappear.  So, I did one more coat for good measure and to address any uneven spots.

Then came the moment of truth.  Would the Frog Tape live up to the hype?  Oh, indeed it would!  I started peeling and saw only crisp white lines with no bleed through...

I was truly shocked at how precise the lines turned out.  The only touch up I had to do was to cover up the paint sample spots along the white lines with a bit of white primer.

I left the door open for the afternoon to let it cure and just keep standing in the doorway to ogle.

I'm so pleased with the results and with how easy this project was as a whole.  The hardest part was mustering the patience to apply all those coats of paint, but even so, the actual painting time was minimal.  I could knock out each coat in 5-10 minutes.  It was the wait in between that was so painful...but totally worth it in the end!

What about you? Anyone else tackling their interior doors?  How do you bring pops of color into your home?

Linked up to East Coast Creative for their Creating With The Stars 2014 link up contest - click over to see some amazing projects!

*The IHeart Organizing giveaway ends this afternoon at 1pm Pacific still have a few hours to enter!

Thanks so much for reading! We would love to keep in touch!