...because home doesn't happen overnight.

mudroom doors black 3

I’ve been meaning to paint the mudroom doors black since the day we moved in over three years ago. I finally got around to it. Why do I put off little things like this for so long??!!

mudroom doors white

During renovation we had pre-primed french doors installed to replace original sliders out to the backyard. This is our main entrance / exit in real life. It’s where we put on and take off shoes, bring in groceries and mail, hang up jackets and unload backpacks and lunch boxes. Needless to say, the white was never white. It showed every dirty fingerprint and was impossible to keep clean.

mudroom door paint

I used Glidden’s trim & door paint in deepest black. It’s the same paint I used on the french doors in the kitchen. (Which begs the question, why didn’t I paint the mudroom doors at the same time?) It was leftover which was nice because it’s a little pricey. The oil “paint” is more like a gel. It has the consistency of finger paint but, please, don’t apply it with your fingers ;) You don’t stir it and it has a strong odor. Cure time is longer, too. It took three coats to cover the white. Keeping the kids and kitty at bay was probably the hardest part.

mudroom doors black 1

The black hides fingerprints and the extra high gloss finish is super easy to wipe down. I love that this paint is dramatic AND practical.

mudroom doors black 4

It irks me that the doors in the mudroom are recessed while the ones in the kitchen are flush with trim surrounding them. This stems from the fact the mudroom doors were once sliders and the kitchen doors were once a window. I don’t really prefer one design over the other; I just wish they were the same for consistency’s sake. It’s one of those minor details we overlooked during renovation. Ah, live and learn. Catch you next time french doors.

mudroom doors black 5

The way the newly painted doors frame the view out back is icing on the cake.

mudroom doors

While I was at it, I went ahead and touched up the paint on the exterior side of the doors, too. (It’s evening hush by Behr in a satin finish, and it matches the front door.) It was nicked up from keys and such, and it really stood out to me once the interior sides were freshly painted.

Btw, the DIY outdoor art still looks great two years later!

kitchen doors gray 1

My painting streak didn’t stop there. I painted the exterior side of the french doors off the kitchen as well. (Again, it’s evening hush by Behr.) They’re Cheetah’s doors.

cheetah door

Every morning she meows at the doors until we open one so she can closely watch the birds, rabbits, neighborhood cats and deer frolicking in our backyard. As you can see in the photo two images up, we keep sliding screens on the doors so Cheetah can’t escape. (We have screens for the mudroom doors, too, but they’re a little cumbersome to open and close numerous times per day so we don’t use them all that much.)

kitchen door open

I sorta fret over the doors being painted two different colors, inside and out. But it really isn’t a big deal. I think it helps that they’re both dark colors.

It feels good to finally cross all those painted doors off the list. What tedious projects are you putting off / tackling these days?

images: Dana Miller for House*Tweaking


These look amazing.. I need to paint all of my interior doors. Wow, that is a job, so it has been put on hold for a very long time.


Wow, I love the look of this glossy black. It really highlights the view to the outside, like you said!


I saw some salvaged wood artwork in a cool little shop in Chicago (Alapash Home) just last weekend and thought of your piece.

Also I keep looking at the difference between the doors in the mudroom and the doors in the kitchen and am convinced that you’re imagining it.


I love the fact your Fig plant has its own spot. LOL. Front and center!

I bought mine at Ikea, I ignore it for the most part and it is GROWING!


The doors look wonderful! I need to paint a few doors (interior) and almost all of our baseboards and window frames. :( The baseboards are what I’m really dreading.


Any thoughts on French vs sliding doors? I’m looking to start renovating my kitchen and am leaning towards just replacing the slider instead of installing a French door but I love the look and feel of the French door. What made you and Steve decide not to use sliders?


The doors look great! I have always wondered about the French doors in your kitchen, thinking they appeared a little smaller (narrower) than a standard set of doors and your post today confirmed that suspicion! We are thinking of changing the doors to our deck from our family room to our kitchen, which would be replacing a set of windows that would not equate to a standard door width. Do you find it “tight” to go in and out of the one side of your kitchen French doors? That would be my only concern about making the switch. Thank you!


I am avoiding dealing with my online picture storage. Whenever someone mentions a project they finally got around to tackling and wish they had done sooner– I think of those damn photos. Argh.

Love the doors. Don’t let my picture angst rain on your parade. :)


HA! Painting the inside of our front door, which is all full of fingerprints! Probably…BLACK! (Our interior doors are all Benjamin Moore Soot.) And…getting a coat of paint on the baseboard radiators before fall comes! (We’re in Vermont. It’s not that far off.) By the way, should you ever have a desire to know which paint works best on metal baseboard radiators, it’s Benjamin Moore Advance. (I went through four different brands of paint before I decided to try some leftover Advance. It’s perfect. Just throwing that out there in case anyone else needs to know.)

Cheetah = our Shih Tzu, Rocky. Forever defending us from blue jays, chipmunks, and other things unseen but which represent danger. Screened front door = dog TV.


I LOVE me some painted black doors, yours are wonderful ! I’ve been putting off a tiling project but excited to get started… love seeing your home!


Dog TV…haha!


If the kitchen doors were a main entry / exit, they would feel cramped. They are 4′ wide in case you’re wondering…the same dimensions as the original window we replaced. But as a secondary exit to the backyard (we use it mainly to access a grilling patio), it works. If there’s a particular day we know we’ll be in and out a lot we can open both doors and keep the screens closed to make things easier. Still, I wouldn’t trade those doors for a window. Ever.


With little kids, I just feel like opening / closing french doors is easier.


These look great! I really want to paint the door and window in our kitchen black but I haven’t had the nerve to do it yet. My husband also gave me a funny look when I suggested it – now I can show him your photos to prove it will look great :)


That’s what I do too! Ignore it until the leaves are droopy then it gets a good watering.


Oh, I put that off for a while too. Felt so good to get them painted!

Does the Glidden door paint smooth to a nice even finish? High gloss sort of scares me for that reason, but I’m wondering if the higher price point is worth it. We’ll be painting our kitchen doors once they’re installed, and we’re just trying to agree on a paint color and finish. Thanks, Dana!


The color is superb! No qualms there. Glidden claims “no brush marks” but the finish isn’t perfect. (Or I’m a really sloppy painter.) Still, I love the drama and would use it again.


I just told my husband yesterday that I wanted to paint our back sliders to the deck black! I love yours! What a picture frame they make for the outdoors. Do you have an a/c vent in front of your doors? I would love to put my fiddle leaf in front of the slider that doesn’t slide but the vent in the winter I’m afraid will do it in. We are in St. Louis, MO. I forgot where you are? Anyway, it looks great!


My cat is the same way…meows until I open the patio door so he can stare at the birds, bugs and squirrels. I have a slider, but would LOVE to put in French doors instead, but didn’t know how I would get around the issue of Norman needing the door open. Now I see how you have the screen as well, and it makes me happy to realize it’s something I’ll be able to do down the line:)


There is a heating / AC vent in the floor in front of one kitchen door…near Mr. Fig. In the winter, we rarely use (i.e., open) the kitchen doors so I slide the tree over a little, away from the vent. It does just fine.


yay for freshly painted doors! unfortunately its pretty much the most tedious project of all house projects especially when there are cats trying to escape and husbands that have no regard for wet paint!! i painted our front door this weekend after dealing with the pre-primed one for more than a year. the “garbanzo paste” yellow is so much prettier than that dingy pre-primed color!! https://instagram.com/p/6LvO5XO3PP/?taken-by=amandadetrick


Love the dark doors and I’m sure that no one will notice that they are two different colors! Also, I’ve totally been there with putting off a project even though I already have all of the stuff out for it!



Thank you so much – I really appreciate your thoughts and details on how you use the doors. Very helpful! :)


Doors look wonderful! I’m curious how you have sliding screens with your french doors. We have french doors off our family room and I would love to add sliding screens to them so we can leave them open and not have bugs. The only options I have found are the screens that retract and are magnetized to close. Is that what you have? Any tips of what to look for are appreciated!


We have the same doors and I’ve been wanting to paint them black forever since the white primer is starting to look dirty. Is there any reason you didn’t you the glossy stuff on the outside? Maybe that is only interior paint? I know you mentioned in the post that it kind of bothers you that it is two different paints so that led me to believe that one is interior paint and the other is exterior? Is that right?


Love the glossy black! Side note: Where did you get the sunhat that is on the hook above the bench? So cute!


I bought the hat on our trip to Mexico last spring. I got a pretty fiery sunburn the first day even with sunscreen, so the hat was a necessity. I’ve been wearing it all summer!


The gel paint is actually interior / exterior so it could be used outside if desired. I just like the look of the moody blue-gray in a satin finish on the exterior. It complements the red brick and gray metal roof.


The screens are simple sliders with a manual lock / unlock switch. A track at the top and bottom of the door jambs hold them in place and allow us to open and close them. The screens and tracks were installed at the same time as the french doors. If you have french doors already you might try talking with a local door company to see what additional hardware is necessary for a similar setup.


Such a happy front door you have!


The doors look great! I ended up doing the same thing a few years ago. So much less wiping with the black!!


I LOVE them Dana. Interestingly enough i recently painted my interior french door and interior front door glossy black too. I absolutely love high gloss black doors, but they arent as glossy as id prefer. I just used some leftover high gloss black paint i had leftover from a previous project and they are OK but im left feeling a little blah. I actually completely forgot about this Glidden trim and door paint and now im wondering if i should go over them with this. I wish i coulda used it for my exterior front door, but i wanted coral and the color selection is fairly limited. Anywhoo, now im inspired to repaint which sucks, but its all about the end result.


Wow! LOVE your black doors. I always put off painting doors and then once they’re done I’m blown away by what a difference a well painted door makes & kicking myself for not tackling it sooner.
Our current place has doors that were painted in oil & then water based, so all the water based paint peels off every time they get knocked (read: everyday). Such an ugly mess.
This post may have given me inspiration to tackle the mammoth task of fixing them.

[…] How to take French doors from white to black. […]


I love the color scheme! Where did you get that great rug?!!


Interesting. I never would have thought of black doors, but they do look very sleek and chic. I’m so glad they’re practical, too. Often black show lots of dirt, too, but it sound like this one cleans easily. Thx for the design idea.


It’s vintage from etsy. I love using old but not rare rugs in our home. They’re surprisingly kid-friendly! Here’s a little more about my thoughts on vintage rugs…



In the first picture. What is the color of your mudroom next to the door


It’s besalt by Ace Paints in a flat finish.


Did you take the door handles off when you painted?


Yep! In the past, I’ve tried taping / painting around door handles but the results were less than stellar. I think the hardest part of painting doors is that they’re out of commission while painting and curing. So inconvenient!


I am starting a similar project in the spring and hope my results look as good as yours. I have used BM Regal Select on a few interior walls but may go with something more basic (and cheaper) for my doors. I love how yours turned out!


Hello! What are the dimension of your black French doors? i just ordered 54″X96″ French doors and will paint black. But I’m having a hard time finding something online to look at. Just to see homes with them, get a good idea of size/scale. Thanks.


Love the French doors in gloss black.
What colors are they? What brand. So we paint flat first? Then we wait to let dry then paint with high gloss?