Back in black

We interrupt the flow of posts revolving around our Saarinen saga to bring you another Labor Day weekend project. I'm sure you're all just dying to know how I cleaned the Saarinen tulip table and chairs with everything from toothpaste to clothes washing detergent. But don't fret. I'll explain it all tomorrow. A post about cleaning... Be excited!
What else did I do over the holiday weekend? Paint. The front door has been transformed with the same color as the back door that I painted last spring--black. (Back door pictured above. Follow the link to learn more about that project.) 

It all started with painting the vestibule--the little room between our storm door and front door. Last September, we installed a new storm door. This September, I finally got around to painting the interior of our little construction project. It's part of my promise to finish painting the trim. Better late than never.
After finishing up with the painting, I decided it was high time to work on replacing the mortise lock in our door. We've had some issues with the lock sticking, so we bought an expensive (like over $200!!) replacement to try and fix it. 
The only problem? It's the wrong size. Bummer. I decided to return the replacement, clean my existing hardware and do like Tim Gunn advises: make it work. Besides, I'm all about putting $200+ back into the pocket.
I started cleaning the hardware with a bit of brasso. Yummy.

Then I looked at the door, thinking "I should clean it." I clean it often, polish it often, dust it often. It never looks clean, polished or dusted. 
That's when it hit me. Let's paint it!

 Fast forward a few hours. I sanded, primed and painted two coats on both the interior and exterior sides. As I painted, my smile grew. The black is so clean, so polished, so much better than the beat up wood that was soon going to need to be refinished anyway. I've been thinking of doing this for months and I was thrilled to finally be doing so.
Then I put back the polished hardware on the inside...

 ...and the outside. Love! Better yet, the cleaning and tinkering I did improved the function of the mortise lock so it's good to go. 
A beautiful new door. Done in a day. Using supplies I already had. Can't beat it. How about a true before and after, just to milk those imaginary ooh's and aaah's I'm hearing from the live studio audience in my head. (What? Don't you hear them?)

 Before, taken while replacing the storm door last year.
 Before, with the said storm door in place.
Before, from the inside.

Say it with me: oooooooh. aaaaaaaah!

linking up with Thrifty Decor Chick.


  1. Love your paneled door and the old hardware! The black looks great! (And you should thank yourself for not choosing the lengthy refinishing route like I did.)

  2. Erin, I was thinking of you as I did this project! My thoughts included things like "Erin is much more patient than I am for doing all she did to her door." "Erin's door has a brass kick-plate. Mine doesn't. Interesting." and so on. You're door revamp was obviously inspirational! :)

  3. Love the door and all the work you've done on your place. Living vicariously through you because I know I won't be doing any of these projects...just not handy.

  4. Oh Kirsti I LOVE reading your blog!! I agree with Megan, I am living vicariously through you as well!

  5. First off, one of my favorite AC/DC songs! Love the black door - it looks fantastic. Elegant and dramatic.

    I've been debating on whether or not to paint my front door black. I think it just might be time!