Monday, November 21, 2011

Exterior doors + hardware

So every day we have 2-3 site visits per day, working out the details surrounding the work (how tall do we want the counters or shelves, how should the electrical plan function, in what pattern should the tile be laid, etc), and then we get home we have all the research that goes on online — which is making design decisions, sourcing, pricing, etc.

Each week the research/sourcing part is something new, and we try to hit it with a hard focus because there's always something else pressing for attention around the corner. Here's an example — last week was doors and door hardware. This particular project, like many others, would be easier for someone with traditional or transitional taste, but with a narrower contemporary market for these kinds of things you searching for a needle in a haystack sometimes. Especially if budget is a factor at all.

Everyone has seen the front door I'm obsessed with by now but I couldn't not mention it again :) I finally found someone in the US to make this door and it should be ready in a couple of weeks. Due to price, time and several other factors all relating back to those two (mainly the first), I had to let go of the "one" sidelite and keep the framing for our 2 existing sidelites. So our door won't be off-center like this one, but will have a panel on each side and will be centered in between. I do think you lose a little there, but that's the way it goes.

Door I absolutely looove from the UK site

Drawing for our new door, cypress with grooves, will be flanked by a 1-panel sidelite on each side.
Hardware will be placed as shown.

What small sacrifices we lost to budget in design I got over when I finally found this beautiful, long, slim front door handle after days and days of searching. Of course I stole (borrowed) this idea from the door at the top but it took some investigation, and again a lot of weird stares from hardware vendors, to figure out how the door would actually stay closed — since this is a handle, not a knob. Turns out if you install a handle like this, pair it with a deadbolt, then the key is just 2 heavy-duty roller latches that provide the "catch" for the door closing.

The stainless steel mail slot (2 sided) we found from European Home was the icing on the cake. I almost cheaped-out here but at the end of the day Mike encouraged me to just do it right the first time and I'm so happy I did.

We have 2 backdoors — one off of our kitchen and one off our den (leading off of the screen porch). We found these doors as a stock item, shopped it around till we found the best price, and ordered 2. We'll stain them in a similar color to the front door. Thinking they'll visually echo the horizontal paneling in our windows nicely.
We're continuing the stainless steel theme around to the backdoor hardware too. These will be the plates, but with a sleeker 1-piece handle. We'll do a stainless deadbolt above this. (All from Emtek)
And on the inside, the knobs continue of course....We have about 20 internal doors to upfit, so we're weighing this decision carefully b/c we do not want to do this twice! This search started when we decided against the traditional round knobs. Which, given the small contemporary door hardware market, left some version of a lever handle (similar to what we're doing on the back door above)...until we found this little pretty here...I hope she will fit in our budget so we can keep her! Stay tuned...


  1. Hi Bree,

    I was wondering where did you source the beautiful doors you have? We are at a similar situation, renovating a 1960's contemporary ranch on a budget. Thanks.

  2. Hi Heidi – so sorry that I just noticed this post! I sourced the doors through American Window and Door - they were custom products done through them. My rep was Robert Land (Robert Land ). Please let me know if I can be of further help and again, so sorry I just saw this!! Bree

    1. Oh and Heidi – good luck with your project :)