Open Wide

Whoever built our house must have had a really big refrigerator. How else do you explain putting a 42-inch door in a 900-square-foot home? Between the door and a few windows, there’s almost no wall left in the living room.

Which would’ve been okay, except the original door was old, plain and ugly – and had a big gap at the bottom that sucked in cold air all winter. Not cool. More than painting the drab white walls, more than tearing off our asbestos siding (in a careful, environmentally-friendly way, of course), I dreamed – alright, nagged my boyfriend – about getting a new door. And this month, we finally did! Second greatest Valentine’s Day present ever (our cat is the first).  Check out the blurred action shot of the old door on its way out.

Though 42 inches is actually a standard size, it’s still uncommon. That means a wood door that wide can be quite expensive, especially when you include glass – which we wanted to do in order to let more light into our dinky, formerly dim living area.

But the large craftsman doors at International Door & Latch in Eugene, Ore. were actually quite reasonable. We got the whole shebang – pre-hung door with new handles and locks – for just over $2,000 (okay, maybe it’s not a bargain, but nice doors are pricey! And this was lot less than what we were quoted elsewhere). Mind you, we (my boyfriend) did stain the door ourselves. My uninspired photography does not do it justice, by the way:

Nice old-school wooden doors are few and far between in our neck of the woods, where most houses were (sigh) built after the 60s. But just like when you get a new car and suddenly spot the same model all over the road, I’m now noticing hardwood, paneled, windowed craftsman-style doors on houses everywhere. And though I’m more than pleased with our new door (except for the fact that it suddenly makes the rest of our house seem crappy in comparison – especially the unfinished strip above the new door, which was turned out to be slightly shorter than the old door) I’m also envious of the models I missed in our initial search, like the fir doors from Omega Too, the dutch door from Jeld-Wen or the more elaborate styles at IDL (check out the Gamble House-worthy stained glass). Oh well. One project down, a hundred more to go.

Omega Too

International Door & Latch



Filed under bungalow, exteriors, old houses, restoration

2 responses to “Open Wide

  1. Nadia

    You got a great door for Valentines… I love it… I got a great restored fireplace mantle and surround for my Birthday. Aint life great!!!! 🙂

  2. Pingback: I Saw the Light | I Heart Old Houses

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