The Barn Door

If you’ve ever read a blog or browsed through Pinterest, no doubt you’ve seen at least one zillion barn doors – those suckers are everywhere.  And I totally get it – they look awesome!

However, I’ve been on the fence about the practicality of barn doors for a long time, since I don’t think they provide any real privacy – for instance, I secretly want to commit anyone to the looney bin if they’ve put a barn door on the entrance to their bathroom.  Know what I’m saying?

But then along came this flip, with the laundry room right off the kitchen.  For a few reasons, this space became the absolute perfect spot to try out a barn door.

    1. I wanted to include a breakfast bar in the kitchen, which made the walkway through to the den too narrow for cabinets
    2. A door swinging into the kitchen would majorly interfere with flow
    3. A door swinging into the laundry room (where there are 2 other doors) would be too chaotic, with the laundry room door even crashing into the door to the patio if they were both open at the same time
    4. Neither the kitchen nor the laundry room needed privacy – this barn door could really be just for looks and would have the added bonus of providing something cool to look at on that big empty wall

Final Kitchen Plan

(We ultimately added a powder bath to the laundry area, which isn’t reflected in the floor plan above.)

So bam, it was decided!

As you know, we decided to go with black hardware throughout this house, which turned out to be more difficult/pricier to find than anticipated.  However, I was able to track down matte black hardware for the barn door, and it was shockingly cheap!  You can scope it out here.  (Home Depot carries it as well, but oil-rubbed bronze was the closest they had to black.)

Once the hardware was installed and the door was hung, it didn’t look too shabby!

Barn Door

Or, at least, the top half didn’t look too shabby.  The bottom half . . . let’s just say capris aren’t a good look when it comes to doors.

Barn Door

We ran into this issue because I wanted the doorway into the laundry room to mimic the size and shape of the doorway leading outside (those two doors line up).  But since a barn door needs to completely cover the doorway when it’s closed, the door needed to be much taller than a standard door.  (The door also needed to be wider, but we just brought the sides of the doorway in a bit and your eye can’t tell at all.)

The solution was to add a strip of wood to the bottom of the door so that it didn’t look highwater – it also allowed the door to hang low enough to reach the slide at the bottom, which keeps the door from swinging back and forth when you’re sliding it open and closed.

You can see how that turned out below – keep in mind that it’s only been primed in this photo, so the addition of the wood in the finished look is actually much less noticeable (although not completely seamless).

Barn Door

What do you guys think about barn doors?  Would you ever put one in your house?

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  1. Alana says:

    I had one and loved it. It was wood and looked like a piece of art when closed.

  2. Rosa says:

    I’m sorry if you listed it elsewhere, I might just be so excited that I didn’t see it, but where did you get the actual door? Is it just a regular door with the hardware? I love this look and it’s just what we’ve been thinking about doing for our laundry room. Thanks for the inspiration!

    • Liz - It's Great To Be Home says:

      Hi! It’s just a regular door – we needed a unique size so we got it at Wilson’s Plywood & Door here in Dallas, but if you needed a standard size they should carry something similar at Home Depot, etc. :)

  3. Ellen says:

    i love pocket doors for this purpose. I think we have five. When I built ten years ago, I scoured the plan and put one everywhere the swing of a door would impose. We have one in the laundry, three walk-in closets and a half-bath inside the laundry room. Love ’em and also love that they carry the raised six panel door look throughout.

  4. christy says:

    I think it looks FAB and yes I would love to use one in my house!
    christy´s last blog post post ..Sunday morning in my house

  5. Lynn Weber says:

    I love that you used a door with a glass insert rather than the typical wooden barn door. I’m not fond of the wooden ones, they just don’t fit my design tastes, but I could totally live with a glass one!

  6. Juliana says:

    Totally love the door! I think you were spot on when you decided to use it in this particular door opening. Too bad about the problem with the height! You could consider painting it in a bold color, different from the rest of the door. Or cover it with stainless steel! In architecture, when you can’t disguise it, show it off! :)

    • Liz - It's Great To Be Home says:

      I totally toyed with the idea of painting it a bold color! But, I got scared and decided it might be “too much” for buyers – but if it were my own house I definitely would have done that. :)

  7. Caryl Anne says:

    I really like how you used a see through door compared to a wooden barn door. It’s changes the look completely, but in a great, modern day way. I love it! Congrats on an awesome job well done!