Interior design tips (understandably) often focus on areas where you spend a lot of your time. And while you may be reading how to make a striking first impression through your living room or entryway – creating an impact actually starts outside your four walls.
While front door ideas can sometimes feel limited (and often difficult to change), this feature is the first thing family members, guests, and passers-by see when they look at your property. That’s why it’s important to give them as much attention as you would any other space – and this includes knowing what to do to prevent.
Front door mistakes to avoid – to make the right first impression
Knowing which front door colors to avoid is certainly an effective place to start, but the process doesn’t end with your palette. Here are five mistakes that architects and designers insist on when making a front door.
1. Don’t experiment with color
Your front door is unlikely to be at the peak of your color ideas, but your choice of color undeniably affects the overall look of your exterior. As Dominic Skinner, architectural designer at Spatial future (opens in new tab), suggests, it should be a tone that shows your personality to everyone who walks past your house.
“It happens all too often that people play it safe and choose something that will fit so easily into every other home around them,” he says. “There are different colors, patterns and material finishes to explore, and people will notice that when they come to your home.” This way you also play with your creative side and your facade stands out among your neighbors.
2. Buy handles straight from the shelf
Handles may seem relative in the grand front door design, but as Dominic explains, they are surprisingly important.
“Our senses should play a big part in how our homes reflect us,” he says. ‘We experience our environment just as much through touch as we do through our eyes. The type of material and design of a door handle is therefore very important.’
The architect insists that you do not accept ready-made handles that most door suppliers provide, as these are likely to be cheaper alternatives to the handle you may want to use. Instead, you should browse manufacturers and talk to professionals who can provide you with the best handle for your door.
“After all, you close this door a thousand times in its lifetime, and we’ve all experienced that door being a pain to close.”
3. Turn off the light
Security concerns may keep you from opting for glass front doors, but with the right technology, you can fill your entryway ideas without worry.
“Using modern glazing technology, you can flood your home with natural light without compromising the safety of your home,” Dominic says. ‘People often don’t look beyond the existing doorway. In most cases, it can be easily widened with little construction work [to] create a more dramatic opening, especially if you use full-height side windows or glazing at the top of the door.”
And Dominic is not alone in his observations. Designer Lisa Sherry from Charlotte (opens in new tab) adds that you should avoid solid wood doors, which are “great barriers to light and the outside world,” and opt for a glass door that will fill your room with light.
4. Not taking into account the opening
The way a door swings into your entryway can have a knock-on effect on how you use the entire area. That’s why it’s vital to take the time to visualize the best way to open your door. “Having the door open in one direction can free up space — maybe for a console table, or it can narrow the space between your door and stairs,” says the expert.
‘If you’re wrong, your entrance becomes less functional. If you do it right, you can transform your entrance space.’
5. Deliver out the door
‘A front door creates an expectation. Don’t fail to deliver to the foyer,” says Lisa. “Otherwise no one will come through the front door emotionally.”
While knowing how to make your front door more attractive is a priority, the designer explains that your entrance is equally important. ‘The door and the foyer are both a prelude to the experience of the home. From a practical point of view, there should be a drop zone nearby and, if space permits, an intimate seating area.’
And that also applies to your exterior, because front doors work both ways. Keep exit strategies in mind during the design process. The front door should be like a bow to a great experience.”