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Tips for a Front Door Makeover – Before and After

This project for my front door makeover is one that I have been wanting to do for several seasons.

A beautiful front door transforms the entry to your home, adds great appeal and gives a pop of color to an otherwise bland and boring entry.  Chainging the front door to your home can add so much curb appeal. See how I did my makeover, step by step.

Note: Power tools, electricity, and other items used for this project can be dangerous unless used properly and with adequate precautions, including safety protection. Please use extreme caution when using power tools and electricity. Always wear protective equipment, and learn to use your tools before you start any project.

Add Great Curb Appeal to your Home with a Front Door Makeover.

The door color of my front entry door is perfect for seasonal decor. See how it looks for the 4th of July here.

My husband retired last June, and I finally can get his help on so many projects that I have been wanting to do to transform the look of our home.  During the last few months, we gave our shutters and facelift by reversing and painting them.

We also added a new door light, power washed the whole house and gave our mailbox a makeover.

It’s now time for the front door to get a new look. (Hubbie is wondering why he ever retired at this point. He has never worked harder!)

The front door was unsightly and added nothing to the look of the house.  The door was rusted out at the bottom and had very boring hardware on it.

The brickwork, “welcome mat,” and entry step were badly in need of a power washing and it needed a new light fixture. Front Door beforeThe first step was to cut down the boxwoods.  They dwarfed our front step and made it seem much smaller than it really is. I had to convince my husband to cut them down.  He is English and has a fondness for them.

Also, we use them at Christmas times for outside white lighting. (This was about the only time I actually liked them!)

Once convinced, he got out his chainsaw and tackled them.  It took some convincing, but when we were done, they were miniature versions of the originals.

I promised him (with my fingers crossed behind my back) that they would grow again.Boxwoods after cutting downAt this point, I kept coming in and out of the house remarking “I can’t believe how big this step is!”  I even managed to get hubbie excited about the project (in between bouts of mourning for the loss of his beloved boxwoods.)

Alas, cutting the bushes down also showed us how dirty the brick work behind them and on the step was.

We borrowed a power washer from our friend Brian, and set about cleaning the step and brickwork.  We discovered (to our horror and also our delight) that our front steps were a completely different color underneath the grime.

It is amazing what one can get used to and never really notice! I really didn’t give much thought to how it looks since I was so used to coming and going with it looking this way.Power washing the stepsThe next step was to remove the nails from the siding which surrounded the door frame with a small pair of pincers.

The door that we had bought had a pre-hung frame, but we wanted to save the siding if we could, just to save expense on the project.Remove the siding trim first

Next came a shopping trip to choose the style of door. I knew that I wanted two features of the door:

  • that it would be blue in color to match my shutters
  • that it would have some kind of glass panel in the center of it.

In the end, I chose a fiberglass door from Home Depot.  The door is called Providence, is primed for painting, has a beautiful center,  and I liked the panels too.   I just love the look of the design.Providence Fiberglass doorNow it was time to paint the door.  I had recently done a makeover of our house shutters and the color that I used was Sherwin Williams Naval.

I had this shade tinted into a Behr exterior semi gloss paint.  (I prefer Behr over Sherwin Williams paint.) Naval is a very dark blue color that compliments the color of our bricks beautifully.  I wanted the door and shutters to match, so this is the color we chose.

I used a good quality small roller for the panels of the door and a 1 1/2″ paint brush for the trim around the glass center.  Normally, I use dollar store brushes for many projects, but I wanted the finish of this door to be perfect so I bought good quality supplies this time.

We removed the trim from the door and painted it with Behr pure white paint.  Our plan was to use the existing siding trim if we could but we wanted the door trim painted just in case this did not work out well.Painting the door trim

First, we taped the door panel with painter’s tape to make sure the paint did not get on it when we painted.

The outside was painted the dark blue color and the interior side was painted with the white paint to match the trim. Painting the doorI researched a bit and discovered that the hinge side area should match the outside paint color, and the lock area side edge should match the interior color, so this is how we painted it.

This way, whichever way the door is opened, the edge will match the door color on that side.Painting the edgesOnce the door was painted, we had the job of installing it. This door is pre-hung at the manufacturer’s which made the job reasonably easy.

Our friend Norfleet came to our rescue for hanging the door.  He has lots of experience doing this and we do not. Thanks Norfleet! The first step was to take off the old door casing and surround and remove the old door.Step one - remove the old door and trim.At this point the painted door had to be put back into the new door frame.  It was just a matter of dropping it on the frame and putting the hinges back on.Door in frameThe door opening was measured, and we discovered to our delight that the door frame and our opening were a pretty good match.

We had to make a notch on the door edge for the doorbell wires, but this was easy with the help of a drill bit.getting the door ready for the openingThe guys carried the door back to the house, put the door trim back on after making sure it was secure with some shims on the side edges.  Then the lock area had to be notched out a little to fit the hardware that we had bought.Putting the door back on.I love the way that the new door handle and lock is the same shape as the house number signboard that I recently made for the entry.The new door hardware matches the sign board with house numbersThe whole door installation process took about 3-4 hours from start to finish, not counting the painting of the doors. I love the difference that it has made to the front of our house. Tons of curb appeal now!Door before and after.

The last step was to attach the light to the shutters.  A bit of measuring, drilling and attaching the wires and it was done.

The edges of the panels are a nice match for the edges of the glass panel of our new door.New door light.

One thing that I did not expect is that the color that we chose would make such a difference to the look of the brick.  We have considered painting the brick a light gray to make it look more modern, but I actually like it so much more now, so I am not sure.Fixed light

We put the light upside down intentionally to make it easier to change the bulb, but re-positioned down and changed it so that it is upright!

Front entry with new doorWhat do you think? To paint the brick or not?

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Lenora Harris

Friday 2nd of June 2023


I know this was a while ago but I have the same door mat and a red brick home. I just updated my landscaping and would like to get a new mat but I cannot remember where I bought it. Do you recall where you got yours?

Carol Speake

Friday 2nd of June 2023

I can't remember where I bought the mat. My guess is BJs warehouse, Home Depot or Lowes.

Cheryl Grabicki

Tuesday 3rd of August 2021

Paint the brick white. You will love it!


Sunday 11th of October 2020

Hi I just purchased a door pre-painted same color from Home Depot but I’m having such a hard time finding shutters to match! What kind of paint did you use for your shutters? Thanks!

Carol Speake

Monday 12th of October 2020

The original color was called Naval by Sherwin Williams. I didn't like the way the original paint went on so I had Behr tinted the Naval color and painted both the door and the shutters with it.


Saturday 11th of July 2020

Where did you get the planters?

Carol Speake

Saturday 11th of July 2020

I bought them at The Home Store.


Thursday 14th of May 2020

Thank you for sharing.

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