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My Finished Stationary French Door Panels

I finished my stationary French door panels! (If you missed how I built these, you can find those details here.)

I had thought that I would wait to do the wood filling, sanding, caulking, priming, and painting on my new stationary French door panels, and then do all of the trim in the room at the same time.  But I changed my mind. 🙂 I was far too anxious to see what these would look like finished. Of course, with the rest of the room(s) still so far from complete, and with my floor covered with drywall mud, it still takes quite a bit of imagination to see past all of the mess.  But here’s how the panels turned out…

stationary built-in french door room separating panels - interior sidelights - 1

And once again, you get late night photos since I didn’t finish painting until around 10:00 last night. 🙂

Since I currently have the rolling doors and door casings removed and stored away until after I get the walls finished, I found an old picture of my rolling doors and copied and pasted them onto this pic so that we could at least get an idea of what they’ll look like.

stationary built-in french door room separating panels - interior sidelights - 2

I really like the juxtaposition of the linear French door design and the circular rolling door design. I think keeping the circle design only to the rolling doors makes them look more special and unique.

I had someone ask a question the other day about why I made these so thick (framed with 2 x 6’s instead of 2 x 4’s).

stationary built-in french door room separating panels - interior sidelights - 3

The reason I did that is so that these would match the thickness of all of my other door jambs. Not only do my walls have the standard 2 x 4 framing with a layer of drywall on each side, but they also have a layer of 3/4-inch shiplap underneath the drywall on both sides. So my walls (and door jambs) throughout the house are thicker than what is standard today.

Here’s the view from the other direction — looking from the back of the music room (at the rolling doors) towards the front door.

stationary built-in french door room separating panels - interior sidelights - 4

I’m so pleased with how these turned out. And more importantly, those awkward transitions from the wainscoting to the pony walls are gone. This detour/do-over was definitely worth the extra time and money.

Speaking of money, I used these 24-inch 10-lite pine French doors from Home Depot, which were $120 each. So with the two doors, plus the extra trim and supplies, this came in at around $320.

This room is far from finished, but it’s gone through quite a metamorphosis already. Remember how it started out?

Wasn’t that green carpet gorgeous?! 😀 Then I built the pony walls and columns, which I really did like.

But with the addition of the wainscoting in the entryway and dining room, these French door panels are a much better fit. And if I’m honest with myself, I have to admit that I like this look much better than the pony walls and columns.

stationary built-in french door room separating panels - interior sidelights - 2

It’s a cleaner look, and I think it fits the style and age of my house much better. Plus, French doors, no matter how they’re used, are always a good idea in my book.  🙂

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  1. WOW! what an amazing difference, I for one am so glad you changed out the pony walls to these panels, so elegant and classy. great job. Have a beautiful and blessed day!

  2. I LOVE the way this all flows together. The french doors seem to frame the rolling doors and it’s just amazing. I know rebuilding something can be really frustrating sometimes but I can see why you did it and I think you made the perfect decision. Love, love, love!

  3. I usually love all of your design decisions, but I have to admit I preferred those beautiful pony walls. I think they let the rolling doors be the star. Now they have competition with the French doors. But I do understand the problem you had with the moldings not lining up. I hope I haven’t come off too harsh or critical. I know if I just wait, you will prove me wrong. Can’t wait to see the completed room.

    1. I agree. I loved the pony walls & columns! Could not some figuring & adjusting been done before the wainscotting was applied so that it WOULD ALL BLEND together?

      Not liking the look of the stationary french doors. And I disagree….I think the pony walls define the space even more & give it an open feeling.

      I enjoy your posts & I marvel at your energy & hard work!

  4. Kristi they are absolutely beautiful. It separates the rooms but it truly doesn’t separate the room because the light is still there. I love this idea!

  5. Wonderful! And thank you for the discussion of the linear/circular thing. I struggle needlessly with things like that, in fact it was your discussion years ago about mixing metals that first brought me here. You were way ahead of the pack with the mixing metals design philosophy.

  6. I hate to bring this up….but are you doing anything different with your black front door??? it is looking kind of plain and ordinary against those other doors!!

  7. Another win in my book. I know how frustrating it is to makeover something, but the end result is beautiful.

  8. When you announced a change was on the horizon, I knew it was going to be those lovely pony walls. However, I also knew that whatever the upcoming change was, it would be gorgeous. I personally LOVE both pony walls and french doors. What I especially love about your new french doors is that it allows even more light in the room and they do not ‘block’ any of the view of the rolling doors, which are totally awesome and unique. Your attention to detail is amazing!

  9. Love the french doors! It’s funny I initially found your blog because of the pony walls and now they are gone. But I’ve stayed because I found so much more! Thank you!

  10. I LOVE it…so much that I have captured the picture and will have it put in my new foyer…Love all you do…

  11. The entrance to the music room is so pretty with the french door panels…..I am trying to imagine what a room full of birds will look like behind them.

  12. These are beautiful and don’t compete with the rolling doors like the columns did. Seeing the full view, I now think a bright colored wall peeking through those black doors would be gorgeous!

  13. This is absolutely beautiful, Kristi! I’m looking forward to seeing the finished music room and dining room. And, I’m glad you will be building a dining room table to fit your taste rather than using the table you were given! Have you thought of running the table perpendicular to your front windows? I think it will open the traffic lanes in the room, highlight your fireplace and make room seem bigger.

  14. Kristi, you never disappoint! I liked the pony walls, but I like this too. Gives the area a completely different look, can’t wait to see what happens next.

  15. Did you change the black doors that were installed like barn doors? I don’t see the rod that they travel on so was wondering if you changed your mind and put them in hinges.
    Btw love your work!

  16. They look LOVELY and it was a great idea to build them in!

    How lucky for us that you changed your mind?! Two fabulous tutorials for the price of one (although it was the price of two for you)!

    Love your out of the box ideas! Always innovative!

  17. Nicely done! These photos bring up your question on wainscoting. I think I would continue your wainscoting idea into the music room and paint your birds inside the panels….it would look like wallpaper and really tie the rooms together. Just my opinion as we each go our own way in design….

    1. That would be gorgeous! And it would require a whole lot less time-consuming hand painting. Your painting would then be framed as artwork.

      1. I actually FINALLY have a definite plan, but I’m going to keep it to myself for a bit longer. 🙂 I still have some details to work out, but I hope to have more to share next week.

  18. I think this could me one of my favorites! So simple but such a statement and they rent competing against your beautiful black doors. You rocked it!

  19. I love the French doors in this area even more than the pony walls / columns. Looking through to the rolling doors is like looking through a European home … hard to put into words. Love it!

  20. Not that I ever doubted you… But, I loved the pony wall and columns and was sad to see them go. Now seeing the french door panels, actually love them more. Like you said more cleaner and fits the house better. The pony wall actually made the room feel shorter and heavier (if that makes since). Can’t wait to see the finished music room.

  21. I liked the pony walls/columns, but I LOVE this idea – so much more unique, and it makes the space look bigger. I really like the existing doors on the other side, but when you finish the sun room to living room conversion, maybe you’ll consider echoing this treatment on other end? I think the enfilade will make the house seem huge, and, much like the new doorway into the kitchen, you’ll be able to borrow natural light from other rooms. PS – I’m late to the party, but I would not wainscot the music room. The to-the-floor design will echo the longer lines of the french door panels/columns and a wall of pattern isn’t that much busier than a wall broken up with wainscoting. Really enjoy your blog!

  22. Great job. You are so talented.
    I am still a fan of the pony walls. To me they bring a more elegant look. The French doors look too severe. But you are the decorator here and you did a wonderful job.

  23. Although I did like them, the pony walls were a little too “craftsmanish”. I was surprised you chose them knowing how you don’t like the craftsman style. BUT…these elegant french doors make all the difference in the world! I think they look fabulous with your sliding doors. They are truly the bomb dot com & sooo YOU, girl! Great job! 🙂

  24. Hi Kristi, I have to say I just love these French doors. I wasn’t convinced at first but you proved me wrong they fit perfect with the room and wainscotting which by the way I really think you need to continue in the music room. Cheers

  25. Love how the French doors turned out and I agree I think the wainscoating needs to continue into the music room for continuity from the entryway… good luck with whatever you decide.

  26. Personally, I like the luxurious green carpet with the sliding glass door. The original look was fab! Just kidding!
    I prefer the french doors vs the pony wall and columns. No idea why columns in a room bug me, but they just do. I do like colonial style homes with outdoor columns, now that looks grand.

    Your transformation is incredible and being able to complete such a task speaks for itself. Job well done, look forward to seeing the finished product.

  27. As always, impeccable. Lovely choice even though in MY mind I thought they would clash with your rolling doors. I was wrong. The look you created is quite lovely. 🙂

  28. I really liked the pony walls and was sad to see them go, but, as always, you’re right! That weird transition would have driven me crazy, too. The French doors look like they were always meant to be there. Always love your work and designs!!

  29. BEAUTIFUL X 10000
    Love your explanation of “what is wrong” to “this is how I fixed it”
    Love the pride you have in your work.
    Simply blown away!

  30. Love the French door panels, they look absolutely gorgeous Kristi. You never fail to disappoint us. Well done!!!!

  31. Now, that is a view!!! It’s absolutely gorgeous, and it shows off your sliding doors perfectly! Just beautiful.

  32. Just an observation… When my Dad did this same thing, he built 2×4 walls, set the door panels, and finished with drywall, corner bead, and paint to match the adjacent walls. The effect is that of an interior window or pass-through. You chose to finish with door casing and trim as if they were movable doors like any other doorway in your home.

    It’s interesting how you can have essentially the same thing convey two completely different design concepts (doors vs. Windows) while still serving the same purpose (dividing a room) by simply changing the finishes. It also might explain why your readers keep asking why you made them thicker. Perhaps they’re viewing it as a window in a wall instead of a doorway.

    Either way, awesome job!

  33. Love the new look. I definitely prefer these over the pony Walls. My first thought though, I have cats like you and they’re weird and like to kick Windows. I’m interested to see if you start getting nose and window marks on there LOL.
    Gotta love the fur babies

  34. I really do not like the juxtaposition of the linear French door design and the circular rolling door design.

    I think both are brilliant. Just not in the same view.