How to Design Wooden Doors


Wood doors can add a lot of visual appeal to any building. A home, for example, will need many doors for room entrances, closets and storage areas. Take time to reflect on the types of doors that will both function well and look appropriate as this will enhance the overall look of a house. Doors that are too small or hung to open in the wrong direction can affect how satisfied you are with your living space. Research home design books and websites to gather ideas for wood door design and installation.

Things You'll Need

  • Home design books
  • Home decorating websites
  • Measuring tools
  • Solid wood doors
  • Wood veneer doors
  • Paint and stain
  • Antique carved wood doors
  • Appropriate door knobs and accessories
  • Design every door in the home’s living area, or in any building, to accommodate traffic flow first and foremost. Buy doors along a bedroom hallway in the same width and style, including closet doors, to provide a unified look. Space each door's framework at least 18 inches apart from the door beside it to keep the hallway from looking cramped. Make sure all wooden doors purchased are wide enough. Allow space in hallways for bedroom and closet doors no less than 30 inches wide, but check to ensure this complies with local building codes.

  • Factor a door’s weight into designs. Buy heavy wooden doors for entrances or doorways leading into a garage area, checking to ensure these meet fire and building codes within the locality. Purchase wood veneer doors or doors of lighter weight with partial wooden cores for sleeping areas or interior hallways, since lighter doors typically move easier on hinges and make less noise. Solid wood doors can be much louder when closing, plus they typically cost more.

  • Match all doors placed near each other in terms of their overall construction and wood molding around each door's perimeter. Buy wooden doors with a smooth face on both sides, if the house has timber framing, tongue-and-groove real wood paneling or has a high tech look. Recessed panels fit more appropriately with colonial or traditional homes. Match exterior doors placed near each other as well. Buy a garage walk-out door with recessed panels if your home's back entrance door has recessed panels.

  • Choose ornate wooden doors for each entrance of the home if the home is a timber frame design, Spanish, French or Old World design from the 17th century, for example. Take into consideration that smooth designs for any type of door are easier to clean, but carved-wood ornate doors are sometimes appropriate with rustic exteriors or homes built to look centuries old. Look for these types of doors in antiques stores and refurbish them, if possible, since solid wood doors with carvings that are brand new tend to be very pricey.

  • Select door knobs, hinges and handles that fit the period of the wooden door design. Choose bronze or black versus shiny materials for entrance doors if the bricks or wood exterior construction would require aged hardware. Research artistic weathering techniques that will give the faces of wooden doors inside and outside the home an aged appearance, if this is appropriate for your house. Select stains and paints for wooden doors that match colors reminiscent of the architectural period of the home.

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