The time has never been more perfect to invest in improving your own home. I’m not talking DIY your house and sell it for ten million pounds profit kind of improvement; I’m talking about actual home improvement, not house improvement. The days of picking up a property and doing a spot of decorating to sell on as a profit making venture are long gone, and the time has come to put a bit of pride back the family abode.
There are many things that spring to mind when someone mentions home improvement; tearing down walls, re-tiling bathrooms, re-fitting a kitchen and landscaping the garden for example. Other firm favourites are sorting out the flooring and slapping up a splash of paint. These all combine to improve the look of a home’s interior, and put a bit of your own personality into a property. The common factor that is often missed in renovations or home improvements are the replacement of the internal doors.
Considering double glazed front and back doors are high on the priority list of any home improvement, it is astonishing to see many lovely looking homes making do with bog standard plywood doors from the sixties. As an interior designer, it is always a pleasure to see original doors, especially in a period property, and I take great pleasure in sanding them down and waxing them up to restore them to their former Victorian glory. New builds and more modern houses do not benefit from doors from a period home, something just doesn’t sit right with the dimensions of modern living, in which case the designer is more or less given carte blanche when it comes to choosing interior doors.
First of all, take a good look at the decor, is it sleek and slight, modern, heavy, intricate, traditional or futuristic? It is essential to identify the fundamental style before choosing internal doors, as the choice of wood and type of door should either blend seamlessly with the surroundings of accentuate a theme within the home. Choosing the type of wood is a good place to start, and sometimes it helps to identify what styles that particular timber is associated with.
Knotted pine for example has a country theme to it, and goes well with striking fabrics such as chequered cotton or linen. Oak on the other hand is a heavy wood and often rendered in a rustic fashion and combined with ironwork and heavy materials such as velvet. Internal doors make from oak can be successfully used in any area of the home, and offer a long lasting solution to interior decor styles. Beech on the other hand is recognised as a fairly contemporary choice of wood for internal doors, and happily sits between the brash quality of pine and the timeless taste of heavier woods.
The style of door is often more dependent on the room’s function rather than the wood that has been used. The basic options you will come across are Louvre, moulded or plain doors, glazed or unglazed, and hinged or sliding doors. Louvre doors are most commonly used for cupboards and wardrobes, but are often used in saloon type swinging doors, common in kitchen and dining areas. Preferably glazed doors should only be used where there is little light, as the effect can be cold and harsh. However, combing glazed door with attractive curtains can add a touch of personality to a room and can be easily changed as tastes change.
Ultimately, choose a style of internal door that you know innately reflects long standing tastes and is not part of a flash-in-the-pan style statement. Purchasing internal doors is a property investment which should take as much consideration as choosing any other fixture or fitting. Remember that home is where the heart is, and the door is the gateway to your abode.