...because home doesn't happen overnight.
11.11.13 / The Door is Gray!

painted door 2

WOW, you guys! I am so appreciative of all the feedback we got on painting the front door. HH and I read every. single. comment. and were blown away by the range of suggestions. In a good way. Here we were thinking that choosing a color for the *finally functioning* front door was a completely objective decision when, lo and behold, I think it’s much more subjective. What makes one person smile might make another cringe. Thank goodness we are free to paint our doors whatever color makes us happy, right?

At any rate, I could NOT make a decision. I left it up to HH and the kids. It was unanimous. They had no problem quickly choosing the inky gray. {Mabrey said “moon” and I took that to mean gray since gold is closer to the color of the sun. Obviously.}

painted door 1

So gray it is and we are all smitten with it. It’s a deep gray with a hint of navy – Behr evening hush. It feels cohesive {the french doors at the back of the house are painted the same color}, modern and masculine. Depending on the light, the trio of windows contrasts as black or a reflective gloss. I think we’ll live with them as is for a nice long while and if we feel they are getting lost, then I might try some window film.

Some of you asked if painting the red brick was an option. Sadly, it’s not an option for us. Due to how our house is constructed and the climate here, paint would likely result in mold or mildew. Staining or liming the brick are options. {This transformation is especially convincing!} In fact, lime washing / lime painting the brick has been on the table since day one of this renovation. But it’s a huge project that we’re happily placing on the back burner while we tackle more pressing ones. While we don’t love the red brick, we don’t completely hate it either.

painted door 3

The gray door picks up on the newly slatted window planter and looks handsome with the satin nickel hardware. Normally, when I paint doors I use a small angle brush to cut in and then switch to a foam roller for the larger sections. The end result is void of brush marks. This time, I was without my trusty foam roller. Long story short, I was stranded at home with no working vehicle {#lovehousesloathecars} and decided it was time to paint the door. After trimming in, I realized we were out of foam rollers but I was already in the “painting zone” and didn’t want to wait. I ended up brushing the entire door and it shows. It isn’t horrible but there are noticeable brush marks that I plan to roll over with a foam roller as soon as I get back to the hardware store. What’s that saying? Done is better than perfect? I’m down with that.

painted door 4

We’re currently on the hunt for modern house numbers. If you look closely, you can see where the previous house numbers were mounted on a teeny plaque just to the left of the door at the same height as the top square window. They were basically useless unless you tote around binoculars in your glovebox in which case, rock those binoculars. We’re looking for larger numbers but not too large. I think they could take on a “commercial” look if we aren’t careful. Also, we want a simple modern font. It’s barely noticeable above but there is a recessed can light in the eave above this stretch of brick that will illuminate the house numbers at night.

The hard part here is determining how exactly to share an after picture of the house numbers. You know, for safety and privacy reasons. Do we show our actual house number? We have a security system and I’m pretty sure that if someone really wanted to, they could find our house – house numbers on the blog or not. I’m always thankful and inspired when other people share images of their curb appeal online so I’d like to share ours, too.

painted door 5

I’m itching to add a planter under the not-there-yet house numbers. Something to add color and texture. But that will have to wait as the weatherman is calling for snow this week. I like winter and all but why does it have to last so long?

Bonus: spot the crazy kid making faces in the window.

P.S. – 10 DIY holiday wreath ideas!

images: Dana Miller for House*Tweaking

61 Comments

11.November.2013

Love the gray! I was originally a gold voter until I saw the photoshop mock-ups that one person posted, which swayed me the other way.

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I like the moon coloured door! A planter would look awesome under the not-yet-there house numbers.

We have modern silver numbers on our red brick house and I wish I would have gone with higher contrast black numbers like these: http://www.lowes.ca/house-numbers/the-hillman-group-843217-5-in-ribbon-elevated-mount-house-number_g1348731.html?isku=9687986&linkloc=cataLogProductItemsName

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11.November.2013

Nicely done :). Love the gray.

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11.November.2013

I love a blank slate for planting! I think the mulched area to the left of the sidewalk is calling for a lime green leaved Japanese maple, and the planter under the window would look lovely with low growing Siberian Cypress shrubs or Creeping Junipers in blue chip to really play up the gray door. Just some ideas!

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The door looks great! From here, I see no brush strokes, so you’re good ;)

Wayfair has a good deal on these great, modern house numbers: http://www.wayfair.com/HouseArt-5-House-Numbers-031-1-series-HAR1000.html We got some similar at our last house and love the ones that stand off the brick just a bit. It gives you a clean look and I love the shadow that emphasizes the numbers.

I don’t think you need to show your house numbers in their final position. Maybe you can mock them up when you’re working on where to place them and show a different order (like 2413 instead of 1234) or even leave out a number AND mix them up if your house number is long enough. You could even mix up the final result in Photoshop if you have that handy. Good luck!

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11.November.2013

Maybe do your “after” pics after only mounting 1-2 of the numbers. Sometimes people blur out the house numbers but then we the readers can’t get a good feeling for how they look. I’ve also seen people mix up the numbers for pictures but then you’d have to do the work twice

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11.November.2013

1. Love the door color – almost as much as I love the crazy kid photo bombing in the last picture. Next time they need to plan for one face in each door window :)
2. While I love the idea of a white brick house (I grew up in one) I actually don’t mind the red!

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It looks so good- I like that everyone got a vote, even Mabrey! And as much as I love painted brick, I’m glad it isnt an option for the exterior. People really dig authentic features like that and it really “belongs” to the house so I’m happy it stays. Work with it not against it!

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11.November.2013

I love the door color. I ADORE pretty house numbers. I noticed them randomly everywhere when we visited Philly recently. You could photoshop some digits out for final photos or go all in. We’re all fans here!

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11.November.2013

Looks so good! Not sure about painting the brick, though – glad you will wait before making that decision. We got modern brushed nickel house numbers from Home Depot and really like them (size, modern font, can see well from the road) – although, my HH didn’t use the correct bit to drill into the brick/mortar and up close, you can see it chipped out a bit, which is annoying. Just a heads up to be careful about drilling in to the brick, if that is the way you decide to go. Oh, and yes – a fun planter under the numbers (or a few on the bench) would look great (in the spring, though)!

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11.November.2013

Hi! I love your blog and have been visiting for a while. Love all the things you’ve done to make that house your own. One day (if we can move out of Honolulu), I’d love to have a house of my own and be able to “tweak” it too.

I came across these house numbers and thought they’d look great with your new grey door!
http://www.dwr.com/product/neutra-number-aluminum.do#.UXC2mMqs1aY

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replied on November 11th, 2013

Yes, I love those!

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11.November.2013

Actually, the black might be better with your red bricks.
http://www.dwr.com/product/neutra-number-black.do?sortby=ourPicks

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11.November.2013

Hm… now your door looks like a void like the windows. Too bad – this was a good opportunity to really up the wow with a bright color to counter all the red brick.

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11.November.2013

Are you adding shutters? We had our siding redone last year and haven’t found shutters we like- or want to pay for yet. I kindof like the no shutter look but I wonder what my neighbors think. It makes the house look longer/larger. Thoughts?

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replied on November 11th, 2013

Personally, we prefer no shutters on our house as we lean towards a minimal exterior.

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11.November.2013

What if you bought ALL the numbers? Say your house number is 1256 you could show us with numbers 7389. And then when your pictures are done just send back the ones you “didn’t use”. Are numbers returnable?? Anyways, I LOVE the door!

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11.November.2013

Love the new door! Here is a pin I have in my archives for a ‘to do’ project this winter. I think something of this nature would look nice on your house as well! http://www.pinterest.com/pin/163396292703905369/

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replied on November 11th, 2013

CJ –
I vote for that pinterest link – I love the numbers and the plaque makes them more visible from the street!

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replied on November 11th, 2013

Love this!!! Would really make the chrome stand out. You could even do some sort of pattern like the wood art work you did for the patio.

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replied on November 11th, 2013

We’ve thought about it!

11.November.2013

The door looks fantastic! Very sophisticated. I agree with some of the previous commenters that I think the red brick should stay. It fits the era and style of the house, and I think the way you’ve accented it with the roof and the door gives it a fresh, modern feel. I’m sure you could do something amazing with a lime treatment, too, but like you said, it’s a lot of work. ;)

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11.November.2013

Love the gray door, don’t know if this was suggested in the last door post, but did you think about painting the window trim (on the door) gold? As in gray door with 3 gold boxes? In my mind it would be a fabulous tiny pop of color.

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11.November.2013

I like it! The gray picks up the color of the roof and compliments the orangish tones in the brick.

As for house numbers – we love our Neutra ones from DWR and I also love the ones from Heath Ceramics. They’re both kinda spendy though. Home Depot used to have a somewhat modern option, not sure if they still do.

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replied on November 11th, 2013

Just checked out the ones at DWR…love them!

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11.November.2013

Looks fantastic guys!!

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11.November.2013

I loved both but was leaning team gold. Gray was a great choice! I think it’s perfect that you were able to go with the same color as the French doors, perfect! The kids peaking out the window is so cute.

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11.November.2013

Modern Dwell has amazing house numbers! We have the red ones and they are stunning. I bought mine off their Etsy shop but they have their own site too if you want to look them up. http://www.etsy.com/shop/moderndwell

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replied on November 11th, 2013

Oooh, thanks for the link!

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11.November.2013

As a fellow Ohioan (Lima) who was planning on painting her brick ranch… can you share what about your construction made painting a no-go? I may need to rethink my decision!

Is 5″ big enough for your house numbers? If so… here are the modern, inexpensive house numbers we used: http://www.lowes.com/pd_268923-37672-843210_0__?productId=4635033&Ntt=house+numbers&pl=1&currentURL=%3FNtt%3Dhouse%2Bnumbers&facetInfo=

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replied on November 11th, 2013

Something about no weep holes or drainage incorporated into the brick exterior…I think that’s what I remember from the inspection. I need to go outside and eyeball various sizes. Haven’t done it yet!

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OMG i was soooo excited when I opened the post and immediately noticed the door! I’m so happy you went with the grey! I was on #teamgrey and it looks amazing. Can’t want to see which solution you choose for the windows!

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11.November.2013

As good as the door looks in this post, I must say it looks even better “in person”. So the neighbors approve. As for the house numbers, you showed the old ones (mixed-up on a dresser top) — why not show them again and add the new ones (also mixed-up) for comparison?

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11.November.2013

I am totally behind you lime-painting the brick. I think that would agree much more with your particular style. Of course, it also sort of depends what houses in your neighborhood look like. That would be another hard thing to post about without giving up your location.

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11.November.2013

Looks great! I stumbled across these house numbers on Pinterest a while ago and repinned them.

http://www.4men1lady.com/new-house-numbers-project-and-a-giveaway/

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11.November.2013

Use the clone tool in Photoshop to show the same number 3-4 times, ie: make your address 2222, or whatever just one of the numbers is. The gray looks great!

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11.November.2013

Everything you do seems so effortless, simple, homey and cozy. Love your style and your home:) The gray looks great!!!
I have a question about painting brick. We live in Ohio and recently transformed our old farmhouses 3 car garage into a mudroom, craft room, and homeschool room. We were planning on painting the mis-matched brick that we added to the wall that the garage doors were on but I never new painting it could cause a mold issue. I was wondering if you had any advice on what we should do. Should we paint it? Can lime painting only result in a white color?

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replied on November 11th, 2013

From what I know {which isn’t much}, if a brick exterior isn’t constructed with proper drainage and / or you live in a climate where it tends to be humid or wet then paint isn’t a practical option. Paint doesn’t allow brick to “breathe” which can promote mold or mildew. Most liming methods result in a white exterior although I have heard of tinting it too.

Three reasons why we wouldn’t do a lime wash: 1) it’s a ton of *permanent* work 2) most homes in our area are original, unpainted brick and 3) I think white would be difficult to keep looking clean on a house that sits so low to the ground like ours.

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11.November.2013

I think the grey door looks great! But don’t paint the brick!!! I love the brick on your house. It’s tone is really nice and clean and the surface texture looks pretty smooth which is nice. I’m also not sure how the limed brick would look with the standing seam metal roof you have (which I love, btw).

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11.November.2013

Love the gray door! Speaking of brick houses and modern house numbers…http://www.the-brick-house.com/tour/exterior/

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11.November.2013

We made our own numbers. Just picked a font we liked, laid them out (I had a very specific layout that results in each number being a slightly different size). Then used the printouts as a template, cut out, prime, paint and mount. Delivery people definitely them and I know they’re unique to our house.

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11.November.2013

Looks great! I really like the gray!

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12.November.2013

Very Nice! Love the Gray!

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12.November.2013

I was a gold voter but I really like the gray. I was worried the windows would disappear but they don’t! They look great!

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Great color choice, Dana. It looks perfect!

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I voted for gold, but I love the gray! Good choice!

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12.November.2013

Yay! LOVE the gray! Can you tell me about the “newly slatted window planter”? Our home is very similar to yours – red brick with a window planter, and I am digging those slats.

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replied on November 12th, 2013

They are leftover composite deck boards from the platform deck in our backyard. HH installed cleats around the inside edge of the planter and made three “lids” out of the deck boards. The three slatted sections lift up and out for access below. It’s the perfect solution for us! We use it as seating, outdoor storage and the kids love climbing up on it to look inside when they are playing outside.

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12.November.2013

I wasn’t completely sure but was leaning toward this gray and oh my! It looks fantastic! Very sophisticated and seems to really give the house a nice contemporary look – love it

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12.November.2013

I think it looks great! I was just wondering what sheen/finish you chose for the door paint? Thanks!

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replied on November 12th, 2013

Satin finish was recommended by the pros so that’s what I went with. I love high gloss doors but I don’t think they would look right on a MCM ranch.

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12.November.2013

Nice choice. I’m on a gray kick right now and loving everything gray.

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12.November.2013

DON’T post the house numbers! Or photo-shop in different number with the planter. Too many crazies out there – let’s not make it too easy for them.

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12.November.2013

So I was on team gold and have to chime in that I’m slightly sad you didn’t pick our team– but it’s so cool it was a unanimous family decision. (Who knew kids and husbands had such strong feelings on door colors?) Anyway, it looks a little industrial to *me* right now, but I think it has promise to look very cool once you’ve added in numbers and planters or other curb appeal eye candy. Can’t wait for the updates!

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13.November.2013

Ah, this looks so nice. Looking at the exterior it directly translates to the interior, for me. The brick is such a lovely tone (don’t paint!!). I’ve seen so much *bad* brick that your classic shade of muted red TOTALLY does it for me. It is your “pop of color” against the masculine neutral roof, and now door, etc. BTW–I don’t think the door windows disappear at all, even from the very pulled out shot.
If you’re worried, don’t forget that flowers are a very cool way to add color and femininity to the front of the home!

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13.November.2013

Looks great! Looks clean and orderly. I like the brick too… actually, I am coveting the brick and I have for quit some time. I am a California girl and we have plenty of painted brick here and so far, I haven’t found any that compares to the natural brick color. Brick houses say to me, “I am strong and sturdy and the people that live here under my roof are protected by me.” I live in a wooden house and it says, “I am wood… I am doing the best I can…” Anyway, love the whole look of the front of the house :)

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13.November.2013

Yay Yay so glad it’s gray. I didn’t vote but I think the gray matches the inside style better.

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14.November.2013

I’m sorry if someone has already asked (I looked first, and no luck) but what door handle did you install? I love it—and of course the gray door, too!

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replied on November 15th, 2013

I’ll be sharing a full source list after the house numbers are installed…a true before and after post. But the entry set is from Emtek.

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17.November.2013

I would have never thought of gray but I love how it turned out with the bricks. We are painting our door in the springtime. Yellow on a blue house, white shutters. I hope it makes our door look happy.

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17.March.2014

[…] rehabbed the original front door back in the fall. (Read about it here and here.) And now that we’re actually using it, it’s time to spruce up the […]




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