Take a minute to count the number of doors in your house. Surprising, right? Consider then, the impact that a little attention to the doors can have on the overall style and design of your home. Whether you're just moving in or staging for a sale, new doors are a simple way to dramatically update the space. The good news is that there are as many styles of doors as there are doors in your home. Making the decision is the toughest part.
Let's take a look at the options:
Prices for interior doors vary depending on what they're made of. There are pros and cons associated with the materials themselves that are worth considering before you start thinking about the different styles available.
Solid Wood: Believe it or not, most residential doors are not solid wood, but they offer such excellent soundproofing that they are a very popular upgrade. The weight of a solid wood door also lends a high-end feel when you swing it open or shut. Available in all kinds of wood, from exotic mahogany to the most common pine, solid wood gives you the option of staining to accentuate the beauty of the wood or painting to work with your decor.
Solid Core: These doors are actually constructed of medium-density fiberboard (MDF), which is essentially an engineered hardwood that is available in wood-grain or smooth finishes. These, too, offer great sound proofing and that high-end heft, and are arguably the best value for your money.
Hollow Core: These are the most common and affordable doors available. Hollow-core doors are constructed with wood grain or smooth panels that cover a honeycomb-like center. Hollow-core doors are much lighter in weight and offer less soundproofing, but the upside is affordability.
Prehung or Slab: Finally, it's important to consider whether you will hang the door in an existing door frame, or purchase a door that is prehung in its frame. Hanging a heavier door is a more delicate process, so we recommend homeowners interested in solid wood doors consider prehung options. A lighter, hollow-core door is simple to hang from existing hinges as it doesn't have much impact in terms of weight.
Once you've decided on the type of door that best fits your needs, it's time to think about style. Regardless of construction material, these are some of our favorites:
Panel: Panel doors offer a little detail and history. The panels are constructed of rails and stiles to create two-, four- or six-panel options. Rails and stiles can be straight or curved to match your design aesthetic. Straight lines tend to fade to the background, which is often the best option when you're upgrading several doors in one space. Panel doors work well in more traditional design styles. Whether solid wood or hollow core, a black, six-panel door adds instant style and interest.
Flush: Flush doors are just that: smooth, with no detailing. The lack of detail makes them a good choice in any decor, but especially if you're working with more contemporary styles and accessories. This is also a style that can carry bright, citrus colors without overwhelming the space.
French doors: French doors are a beautiful upgrade in the right spot. The detailing of the panes—and the light they bring—improve the look of any space, and the value as well. Great for exterior doors, they can also help open up interior spaces while still offering boundaries, both visually and spatially.
Pocket doors: Pocket doors are problem solvers. They are the perfect solution in tight spaces, or as a way to add a little privacy within a larger space. They also add a custom flair. Installation requires wall space on one side of the door large enough to accommodate the door when it's open. Don't forget that these are also available in flush and panel styles.
Of course, there are a few door styles too stylish to leave off the list. These are our picks:
Barn doors are a beautiful way to add real visual interest and architectural flair, and are much simpler to install than you might guess. A simple track above the door holds the panels and allows them to slide open and closed. Choose rustic, natural wood tones and textures or more tailored and polished door panels.
Frosted glass inserts are a great way to let in the light and maintain privacy while adding a very custom, high-end look. Great for closet doors, they also work well in other interior and exterior situations.
Those are just a few of our favorites. What's on your wish list for interior doors?
Kerrie Kelly is an award-winning interior designer and the founder of Kerrie Kelly Design Lab in northern California. Kerrie writes on interior design topics for Home Depot. Many of the interior doors mentioned by Kerrie in the article can be viewed online at www.homedepot.com/b/Doors-Windows-Doors/N-5yc1vZas82.
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