As most of you probably know by now, I don’t work on Wednesdays. That’s the day that I have lunch with my mom and brother. My brother only has an hour for lunch before he has to get back to work, but my mom and I stay and talk until 4:00. Then I host my church group at 5:30.
So that’s why you’ll almost never see me posting about actual progress on projects on Thursdays. On a rare occasion, I might fit in a couple of hours of work from 8:00pm to 10:00pm on Wednesdays, but that’s only if I’m really close to finishing something and I’m feeling motivated to get it done before I head to bed.
Anyway, all of that to say that yesterday while we were sitting in Rosa’s Cafe, my mom had some opinions about the doors in the back entry of the studio. After looking at all of the pictures in yesterday’s post, she felt pretty strongly that white was the right color for the doors because any other color caused a visual separation between the two curtain panels. Since the background of the curtain fabric is white, the white French doors made them look cohesive. I’m not sure if I explained that in a way that makes sense, but it did make sense to me the way she explained it.
So after she convinced me that white was the best option for the French doors, I thought that all white doors would be my only option. I’ve got to be honest. I had a really hard time getting excited about this look…
But then she pointed out that there was really no reason that all of the doors had to be the same. The back French doors could stand on their own with the curtains, and then the two side doors (i.e., the bathroom door and the storage closet door) could be something totally different. There are no hard and fast rules I’m required to follow here.
I had already briefly considered that possibility, but for some reason, I wrote it off almost immediately. In my mind, for a reason I can’t explain, all of the doors did have to match. But when she mentioned that, I started to consider the possibilities. I obviously didn’t have my computer with me, so I didn’t have a way to mock up the different ideas we talked about while we were sitting there in Rosa’s. So I couldn’t wait to get home and try out our ideas.
Since the Behr Black Sapphire (the really deep, dark blackish purple that’s on the buffet in the breakfast room) seemed to be a crowd favorite in the comments of yesterday’s post, I tried that one first. (You’ll have to pretend that the French doors are the same white as the trim.) I like how this looks!
Next up, I tried the Sherwin William Iron Ore. I like this one as well!
But there was one option I was super excited to try. We kept talking about how to make the two sides of the room cohesive. So how do I make the back entry of the studio cohesive with the front mural wall? Here’s what the front mural wall looks like…
So if the goal is to make the back entry cohesive with that mural wall, I don’t think that Black Sapphire or Iron Ore are the way to accomplish that. But there is one thing on that mural wall that seems like the obvious choice to add to the back entry. Do you know what I’m talking about?
Wood! That wall has a 20-foot wood countertop and two wood window shades. I couldn’t wait to see what wood doors (particularly the dark walnut color of the window shades) would look like in that back entry. In my mind, it would be the perfect option. So I edited my photo to include two walnut doors, and….OH MY GOSH, I LOVE IT SO MUCH!!!
I mean, I can’t even get over how much I love this. I can’t stop staring at it and dreaming about rich, dark walnut doors in that back entry. Here are the two sides of the room together. I think this is just perfect.
After bringing up this possibility, my mind immediately went to, “How can I get this look?” My first thought was to use Retique It on my doors. That’s a primer that has wood in it, so whatever you apply it to can then be stained. They have a whole line of stains and graining tools that can be used to make just about any surface look like wood. Here’s a good example of a dark stain color using Retique It products. If you can’t see the embedded Instagram reel below, you can click here to watch it on Instagram.
While that’s an option, I hesitate to jump right in and start purchasing those products because, if I’m being honest, I rarely see projects done with that product that actually look good close up. They may look fine from a distance, but close up, they fail the visual test and don’t look anything like real wood. I may see 1 out of 50 projects that turn out looking decent when seen close up, and the ones that look really nice (as in, they could fool you into thinking they’re real wood) are even more rare than that.
In trying to think of other options, I knew people would recommend gel stain. If you’ve been around here for long, you know that I can’t stand gel stain. So using that isn’t even an option for me. I know gel stain is a go-to product for a lot of DIYers who want to produce a wood look on projects, but I’m just not one of those people. Again, I rarely see a convincing outcome (especially when viewed up close) when it comes to gel stain.
Another option I considered was swapping out my six-panel doors (which were pre-primed MDF when I bought them, and have since been painted twice, I think) for unfinished wood slab doors, which look like this…
I could use the same Behr water-based walnut stain that I used on the storage cabinet in our bathroom. The sides of that cabinet are MDF, and the back is plywood. And that stain gave me a consistent color on both surfaces. I was so shocked!
If that stain can make plywood and MDF look the same, I think it could do wonders on an unfinished wood slab door.
And, of course, the most expensive option would be to purchase real walnut veneer, like this gorgeous walnut veneer from Oakwood Veneer Company.
That’s the place where I purchased the walnut veneer that I used on our vanities and storage cabinet in our bathroom. It’s amazing quality, but it’s definitely not cheap! If I went that route, I’d only purchase enough to put on one side of each door. I’d be okay with both doors being painted white on the inside. White goes with the studio bathroom perfectly, and I couldn’t care less about what the inside of the storage closet door looks like.
But I’ve now become a bit obsessed with this idea. Now that I’ve seen a mock up of walnut doors in that back entry, I won’t be satisfied with anything else. I just need to figure out how to get that look without spending a lot of money. Either that, or I need to decide that this is important enough that I’m okay splurging and spending $550 on real walnut veneer so that the entryway side of two doors can look like real walnut doors. I’m considering it, but I’m not quite there yet.
Addicted 2 Decorating is where I share my DIY and decorating journey as I remodel and decorate the 1948 fixer upper that my husband, Matt, and I bought in 2013. Matt has M.S. and is unable to do physical work, so I do the majority of the work on the house by myself. You can learn more about me here.