Not Martha

i heart paint, most of the time

We spent our long weekend painting and repainting some doors. Here are some things I learned.

– If your door has a lot of small mullioned windows, these blue painters tape corners will save you a lot of fiddling.

– An angled 1″ brush and a little foam roller and tray kit (labeled trim rollers) will be all you need for a door if it’s got lots of molding.

– A quart of paint will be just fine for two coats of both sides of a door.

– Painting a door is a whole lot easier than painting a wall, and I’m not afraid to do it over again. This might lead to a lot of colorful doors in our house.

Of course I couldn’t escape the project without a little bit of drama. I was trying to find a green that would work with a fabric (see here) I have covering a small closet, and would work on two doors in a rather dark hallway. The light in this part of the house comes through one of the doors, so any color on that door appears darker. My favorite color was this Yolo shade called Petal.02.Yolo Colorhouse is excellent paint (see a review at EcoVertex) that is made with all natural pigments and contains zero VOC. I would have loved to use Yolo on these doors, however it’s only sold by the gallon and a quart was more than enough for the two doors I was doing (only one side of each door was painted).

Note to those in/near Seattle: Last I heard Yolo was no longer being sold at the Environmental Home Center, but it’s available at Rodda paint stores. Yolo paint is available at Environmental Home Center and Rodda paint stores. Yolo does not offer swatches but you can buy a poster sized sample that you can stick to the wall you want to paint, it makes it incredibly easy to see how the color will work in that spot.

Quick note on zero-VOC paint: We painted nearly the entire interior of our house using American Pride interior latex eggshell and semi-gloss (for the kitchen). Initially we went with a zero-VOC paint only because we were painting everything in the house (walls, ceilings, trim) with the exception of a few rooms and avoiding as many VOCs as possible seemed like a good thing, we were ready for the paint to be harder to apply or maintain. I found the paint to be great — easy to apply and nearly odorless, and over the last year it’s proven itself easy to clean. I even touched up an area recently and it blended in perfectly. EcoVertex also reviews American Pride. I plan on using American Pride when we redo our bathrooms. We bought ours at the Environmental Home Center. We used American Pro latex primer because it was a wee bit less expensive than American Pride primer. There is one downside to using American Pride paint, it does not keep. Once opened it’s likely to become moldy when stored. This is something to keep in mind if you’re getting a color mixed for you.

I was a bit worried that the Yolo color would look a bit drab in the backlit hallway, especially during the darker winter months. I took a similar but brighter swatch in to be color matched at Home Depot and oh boy was that a bad idea. We ended up with something that was just so slightly over the line into flourescent, yikes:

Before the tape even came down we got a new can of paint, color matched to the Yolo. It’s better:

I’m worried that it’s a bit too bright as well, but I’m going to wait for a few overcast days to make a judgement. At this point I’m not entirely sure I’m processing color correctly anymore.

We also painted the front door a nice glossy blue. I am going to hang a few blue posters on an adjacent wall, hopefully it will tie together well once everything is up. Right now it seems a bit too Primary for my taste. Here again though, the major source of light is through the windows in the door, and on overcast days I expect the blue will appear much darker and muted which is why we picked this shade but it’s hard to remember on a bright and sunny day.

I hope to replace all the above doors with ones that don’t appear so traditional and hardware store generic, I’m also looking forward to replacing all the brass doorknobs and hinges. For now though, our landscaping needs some major attention.

· comments [29] · 05-28-2007 · categories:the home ·

29 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Kath // May 28, 2007 at 6:45 pm

    So very pretty! Congrats!

  • 2 Patia // May 28, 2007 at 6:52 pm

    Cool, thanks for all the tips. I’m probably going to be doing some painting in the near-future, so I’m saving this.

    I LOVE your blue door. I want one.

  • 3 megan // May 28, 2007 at 7:05 pm

    Thank you both. I’ve already begun thinking what I can paint the exterior of the front door (the one that is blue on the interior).

  • 4 Michele // May 28, 2007 at 11:31 pm

    Those curtain and colors are fabulous! I can’t wait to paint my new apartment. (but I guess I should find one first ;) )

  • 5 Dawn // May 29, 2007 at 6:06 am

    I LOVE the green color- it is my fav. Our living room is that color. Thought it was a bit bright at first, but since it’s my favorite color it grew on me. Where did you get that fantastic matching fabric? I LOVE it!

  • 6 Anna // May 29, 2007 at 6:48 am

    Hey, I painted doors (front entry and kitchen pantry) the weekend, too! Yours look absolutely gorgeous…that yellowy green is so tasty.

    I had no idea those tape corners exist! I will DEFINITELY be using them when I get around to painting our windows.

  • 7 Kelly // May 29, 2007 at 6:53 am

    First I loved the green door, but I was really attracted to the blue tape to and just as I was thinking “wouldn’t a blue door be nice, there yours was. So pretty.

  • 8 Megan // May 29, 2007 at 7:00 am

    I love your colored doors! And those painter’s tape corners are genius. All I need now is a painter’s tape that works on textured walls. Oy, what a PITA.

  • 9 megan // May 29, 2007 at 8:22 am

    Dawn – The fabric came from Hancock Fabrics, it was one of those hanging in the interior fabrics swatches. I looked through a loooot of ugly fabrics to find one I liked. I completely forget the manufacturer name.

    Megan – Tell me about it. Before the we had been painting walls and taping the trim. This time I discovered how difficult it is to tape textured walls. We did a lot of touch ups of white paint with tiny brushes.

  • 10 gabbi // May 29, 2007 at 8:39 am

    What a delightful way to add some bouyant color to the room and lift one’s spirit! It really does tie in with the textile pattern over the closet. The blue door looks amazing too. Inspiring!

  • 11 marielle // May 29, 2007 at 8:45 am

    I like them all – including the fluorescent green. But I’m so partial to greens that it’s hard to find one that I don’t like!

  • 12 megan // May 29, 2007 at 8:54 am

    Marielle – I think what I’m not showing is the first green against the curtain fabric, it clashed quite badly. Also, the first green appears as more of a lime color in the photographs here, it was much too bright in real life, took me back to the early 90s.

  • 13 carol // May 29, 2007 at 9:17 am

    you’re not replacing the green door, are you? with the windows and interesting pattern? it’s so purty!

  • 14 megan // May 29, 2007 at 9:31 am

    Carol – I probably will, it doesn’t fit with the style of the interior of the house. But it’s years away yet. Besides, the green doors are very beat up looking when you get close.

  • 15 wendee // May 29, 2007 at 10:42 am

    We’ve had nothing but grief using the paint matching service at Home Depot. It’s always very close, with just a hint of the wrong tone that sends it over the edge – of a steep, jagged cliff of wrongness. Loving what you did to your doors. A great spot of color for a long Seattle winter.

  • 16 Jen // May 29, 2007 at 11:58 am

    I love the blue.

  • 17 Amy // May 29, 2007 at 1:10 pm

    We painted our front door red and now it makes our house really pop. The house was a boring neautral and everything on it blended together. It made all the difference. We need to paint the rest of the doors in our house now. They are showing their age…

  • 18 Miss Sassy // May 29, 2007 at 2:16 pm

    Mmm. The blue is especially bold yet warm.

  • 19 Miss Sassy // May 29, 2007 at 2:19 pm

    Thanks, BTW, for the tips.

  • 20 megan // May 29, 2007 at 2:32 pm

    Amy – Apparently it’s common to paint the exterior front door a dramatic color here in Seattle. I’m having trouble deciding on which color to paint mine.

    Miss Sassy – Thank you and you’re welcome.

  • 21 kris // May 29, 2007 at 2:34 pm

    I love the colors! I wish I could convince my hubby to go for bolder colors, but he’s a colorphobe. Thanks for posting the link to the Environmental Home Center – you saved me researching where to go to buy paint.

  • 22 Angela // May 29, 2007 at 6:42 pm

    I love those little foam rollers. My personal advice is get the slightly more expensive higher density ones and they paint things like cabinet doors and trim like a dream.

    I have always wondered if those corner tape things work well. Now I have proof.

  • 23 Jessica // May 29, 2007 at 7:25 pm

    I think everyone was renovating this weekend. I painted my son’s room with lime green and bright blue so I was looking at the same colors as you were all weekend. And talk about drama, I used the same colors on a wall in my playroom and when I pealed the tape off huge sections of paint pealed off with it.

  • 24 megan // May 29, 2007 at 7:28 pm

    Angela – Thank you for the advice. I was a bit worried about the amount of bubbles the cheap foam rollers created but since these are temporary door measures I decided it would be fine. I don’t see any noticeable troubles with the finish on the paint, but if I was painting really important trim I would have freaked out a bit.

    Jessica – Oh, I feel that pain. Despite my most careful work with a tiny blade a whole section around one of the door knobs came up.

  • 25 April // Jun 2, 2007 at 9:21 am

    We are in the middle of painting our whole house Yolo. I love how the colors are turning out. (Water 02 in our bedroom might be my favorite.) We have all of the trim work to go, so I appreciate the tape tip.

  • 26 JG // Jun 6, 2007 at 12:37 pm

    I’m with Wendee- Home Depot does a really bad job of matching colors! They are close, but really not right. Close enough that I have actually heard them arguing with customers that the color was right- when it wasn’t. I can’t believe they were actually arguing about it! I once had them match a red- it was sort of close, but they had obviously used a magenta base instead of the cadmium base it was. Sure it is a dark red, but there are a lot of dark reds and we all know the subtle bits matter a lot!

  • 27 kiki // Jun 18, 2007 at 9:21 am

    love your colorful doors… you’ve totally inspired me!

    by the way, i was in environmental home center last week and they do actually carry yolo. seemed to have everything in stock. i’m also a fan of green, though petal 02 was a bit bright for me. i ended up with a color from their nursery line, sprout 05.

    those tape corners are genius.

  • 28 megan // Jun 18, 2007 at 10:06 am

    Kiki – Thanks! I have updated the information.

  • 29 Kate // Aug 8, 2009 at 12:30 pm

    Was inspired by your petal door and set out to re-do our bedroom! I was inspired by a 1950′s ceramic lamp we had (in chartreuse) and a British fabric I found with a retro floral pattern. I painted the wall behind the bed in petal and used the fabric to re-upholster the headboard. All teh other walls are a soft cream called “vanilla ice cream” by Benjamin Moore. I can email you a pic if you like. Thanks for being so inspiring!

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