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Repurposed Doors — Projects Using Vintage Wood Doors

Ever since I decided to replace my interior doors with new doors, I have spent quite a bit of time online searching for project ideas using repurposed doors.  I’ll have four 24-inch doors, four 30-inch doors, one 32-inch door, and one 36-inch door, so there will be so many possibilities for things to build and make with all of those doors.

Since I’m rounding up ideas for myself, I thought I’d pass along some of my absolute favorite ideas to you just in case you have an extra door or two lying around the garage.  Even if you don’t have any old doors on hand, you can always pick them up pretty cheap at places like ReStore.

After looking at ideas for a while, I realized that I seem to be drawn to the outdoor ideas the most.  And my absolute favorite idea, hands down, is this adorable little garden shed.  I would love to look out and see something like this in my back yard!

Repurposed doors project - turn old vintage doors into a garden shed, from Sheds, Shacks and Shantiesvia Sheds, Shacks and Shanties

Of course, it doesn’t necessarily have to be used as a garden shed.  I kind of have this idea of building a little shelter in my back yard with either a hammock inside, or possibly a little desk and chair that I can use to work on my computer outside when the weather is nice.

A close second favorite outdoor idea using repurposed doors was to create an arbor.

Repurposed doors project - turn old vintage doors into a garden arbor, via conservationgardenpark.orgvia Jordan Valley Home & Garden Club

Ever since we bought this house, I’ve had this idea of creating a “doorway” from the front part of the back yard into the back forty, kind of like a little pathway to a secret garden.  An arbor would be perfect for that, or I could use an old door to create an actual gate from the back yard to the back forty.  Something like this would be awesome…

Repurposed doors project - turn an old door into a garden gate, via Rock Oak Deervia Rock Oak Deer

And of course, I dream of having a swing (or several), both in our front yard and our back yard.

Repurposed doors project - turn old vintage doors into an ourdoor swing, via Emergent Structuresvia Emergent Structures

I don’t think I’d be able to build a swing out of the old doors currently in our house, though, because I’m pretty sure you’d need solid core doors for something like that.  Our doors are hollow core, so they probably wouldn’t offer enough structural support to hold a couple of people.

Of the indoor projects that I found using old doors, my very favorite one was using them as…well…doors.  Turning them into sliding doors really opens up the possibilities since you don’t have to worry so much about finding the exact door size to fit into your door jamb.

Repurposed doors project - turn old antique doors into sliding doors, via Cedar Hill  Farmhousevia Cedar Hill Farmhouse

This sliding French door idea really has my mind spinning.  You know how I mentioned that I’d love to use French doors in the doorway that I’m going to create between the entryway and the music room?  And then again in the doorway between the music room and the sunroom (which will be the family room)?  Well, I don’t have enough room for actual French doors that swing open, and I can’t use French pocket doors because the one wall between the music room and the sunroom is an original exterior wall that’s carrying a very heavy load.  I don’t want to have to rebuild any of that load bearing exterior wall to make way for pocket doors.  (Not even sure if that would be possible.)  But sliding French doors would certainly be a possibility!  Of course, the challenge would be finding four matching French doors that are the right size.  Challenge accepted!  😀

Anyway…

This is an idea that I never in my life would have thought of, but I think it’s so clever and beautiful — using old doors as a banister.

Repurposed doors project - turn old antique doors into stair banisters, via Chic Design Investmentsvia Chic Design Investments

Too bad I don’t have a two story house!  But I’m sure there’s a way to use that same idea in a one-story house.  Not sure yet, but there has to be a way!

But of course, every home needs a sofa, so why not turn some solid core vintage doors into a comfy couch?

Repurposed doors project - build a sofa using antique doors, via Design Spongevia Design Sponge

I saw several “doors turned into sofas” ideas, but that one was my favorite simply because of the thought that went into the design.  It leans back, rather than having a straight up and down back on it, so it actually looks comfortable.

I think the idea of using a vintage French door as the top of a dining table is so pretty.  I have a hard time figuring out how it would be useful without a solid piece of glass over the top, though.

Repurposed doors project - build a dining table using an old vintage French door, via Tomorrow's Antiquesvia Tomorrow’s Antiques

And I thought the idea of turning an old door into a bed was so clever!  I’ve seen lots of doors turned into headboards, but this is the first whole bed I’ve seen.

Repurposed doors project - build a toddler bed out of an old door, via My Repurposed Lifevia My Repurposed Life

Of course, that’s for a toddler, and I have no use for a toddler bed.  But I do have a dog!  A big dog!  And he’d love his own comfy bed like that!

I also came across several shelves made out of old doors, but this one was my absolute favorite.  They just ripped a door right down the middle and used half on each side.  the crown moulding and furniture feet really make the whole design look polished.

Repurposed doors project - build a bookcase out of an old vintage door, via Joys Of Homevia Joys Of Home

I know for sure (at least I think I do) that I’m going to use two of my 24-inch doors in my hallway for the bench/coat storage thing I’m going to build.  There are so many ideas for hall trees using old doors, and even though mine will be very different from this one, this was my favorite that I found.  I think it’s the combination of the blue and the stained wood that makes this one my favorite.

Repurposed doors project - make a hall tree out of an old vintage door, via Refresh Restylevia Refresh Restyle

And of course, you can find lots of idea for turning old doors into benches.  This one is my absolute favorite door-turned-bench, and I think it’s because it looks like an antique church pew.

Repurposed doors project - build a bench out of an old antique door, via LG Custom Woodworking via LG Custom Woodworking

And then this one would have to be a close second as far as doors-into-benches go.  This one actually started out as a headboard made from an old door, which is why the back has such a grand appearance.  Then they turned the headboard into a bench.  I really like the sheer size of the back of this bench.

Repurposed doors project - build a bench out of an old antique door, via Twig Decorvia Twig Decor

And then I found so many ideas for turning old doors into coffee tables.  On so many of them, the small door panels seemed to really get in the way of the table top actually being useful.  That’s why I really liked this one.  They used a door with very large panels to create the top of the coffee table, so there’s plenty of space to set a drink, a plate of food, or anything else without the stiles and rails being in the way.

Repurposed doors project - make a coffee table out of an old vintage door, via Unskinny Boppyvia Unskinny Boppy

So that’s how I spent a large portion of my Labor Day weekend — relaxing and dreaming of ways to use my ten old doors.  🙂

Do you have any other brilliant ideas for using old doors that I didn’t find?



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24 Comments

  • Reply
    Shelly P
    September 2, 2014 at 10:20 am

    I was thinking of a first floor application for the door railings…why couldn’t they be used on the wall in a dining room like chair rail? Gorgeous!

  • Reply
    Trina
    September 2, 2014 at 10:26 am

    Kristie,

    Could you use the doors for a wainscotting? Seems it would be a cool idea if you had enough of the same size to make it work.

    • Reply
      angela
      September 2, 2014 at 12:28 pm

      that is what i think too .

  • Reply
    Chris
    September 2, 2014 at 10:30 am

    The banister has me thinking. Couldn’t you use the doors as a sort of half-wall? I don’t know where that would fit into your plans. OR what about as a sofa table?

  • Reply
    Carla
    September 2, 2014 at 11:06 am

    The banister idea would make a great pony wall.

  • Reply
    Guerrina
    September 2, 2014 at 11:15 am

    Love the barn door idea you have! The stair bannister looks awesome and, as others have wondered, would they work for some awesome wainscoting?

  • Reply
    Sue
    September 2, 2014 at 11:25 am

    I love the idea of repurposing old doors for indoor and outdoor use. I’ve also seen hollow core doors split down the middle for long shelving in storage areas. They are sturdy and would work well for that purpose.

    I love the arbor idea and am considering it for our garden next year.

    Thanks.

  • Reply
    Susan B
    September 2, 2014 at 11:34 am

    I love the garden gate and the shed/shack idea. But if your doors are hollow core you may be better off taking some panels out, adding glass (or mirrors) and creating the sliding doors for your rooms.

  • Reply
    Kristin Adams
    September 2, 2014 at 12:20 pm

    Hi … I love all your ideas & posts! Especially this one on old doors… The possibilities are endless! This past January I was asked to participate in the Philadelphia home shows Habitat for Humanity upcycle challenge… In which you had to use a door & upcycle it into a piece of furniture or art work. Check out my version of a 3 sided hall tree on my Facebook page Pineapple Cottage Designs if you have a minute!

  • Reply
    Brandi
    September 2, 2014 at 12:53 pm

    These are all really beautiful ideas. I love the creative ways the doors were used. I would love to incorporate the barn doors somewhere in my home.

  • Reply
    Colleen Smith
    September 2, 2014 at 3:32 pm

    Have just found your blogs/posts. Love everything you are doing. Very inspiring! I get tired just reading them!

  • Reply
    Andrea
    September 2, 2014 at 3:40 pm

    We have one divided pane door from a set of French doors we are going to turn into the front of a cabinet to hold Fiesta ware. I love old doors. My husband was relieved to find that our local “junk” man appeared to have sold an old pair of TALL french doors he had out front the other day. I would love to turn them into a barn door type divider to go between the kitchen and laundry room.

  • Reply
    Sheila
    September 2, 2014 at 3:44 pm

    Oooh, Love all those ideas. I was thinking when you showed the stair banister photo how great those five panel doors would look as wainscoting. Very rich I bet! PS. How are you cabinet doors coming along? The ones that got wet. Were you able to salvage them?

  • Reply
    Lisa E
    September 2, 2014 at 6:57 pm

    Love all of these ideas. My hubby was given two solid oak antique doors that are around 10′ high. We have regular 8′ high ceilings. We haven’t decided what to do with them and the thought of cutting them down in any way makes me sad. It’s not a uniform pattern like six panels in a row so I think it limits it a bit more. We’ll probably end up cutting them down. We did a phase one reno on our kitchen and my hubby put in a pass thru into the dining room. Temporarily he used half of a hollow core door as the counter until we decide what counter tops we will get in the rest of the kitchen. We will then replace the door with the new counter top material. In the meantime, it works fine and is nice and sturdy.

  • Reply
    Leena Lanteigne
    September 2, 2014 at 7:03 pm

    I love the use of old doors for projects and the ones you found are great! Sounds like you may have enough doors to make more than one project too! Love the arbor and the little shed! I think that having a little place like that to work or play on the computer or hang out and read would be excellent! Looking forward to hearing about what you’ve decided. Hugs, Leena

  • Reply
    Kathy
    September 2, 2014 at 8:13 pm

    Google the phrase “recycled door ideas”: lots of good stuff.

  • Reply
    Tess
    September 2, 2014 at 8:22 pm

    Please please please build that garden shed and do a tutorial. I want one sooooo bad. You are so creative Krist. I’m enjoying the heck out of your blog.

    • Reply
      Karen
      September 3, 2014 at 3:25 am

      oh yes, that would be great in the way of a tutorial! I’d follow that as well, as I’m planning a garden shed like (just a bit wider) for ages but am not daring enough to go for it without instructions!

  • Reply
    Debra
    September 3, 2014 at 4:45 am

    Love all these ideas!

  • Reply
    Sally A
    September 3, 2014 at 5:20 am

    So weird you bring this up. I went to a hair salon yesterday that has a old door theme. The walls, dividers (some huge barn doors on ceiling tracks), the mirrors you sit in front of and even the reception desk all made out of old doors! I kept talking about how cute it was. I’m also taking this as a sign to finally ask my neighbor if I can have the six panel door they have leaning up against their shed. I’ve been eyeing it for weeks wondering what I could do with it. I’m still not sure, but I love the ideas you have given! Thank you!

  • Reply
    Mary
    September 3, 2014 at 7:06 am

    I’ve read of old flat panel doors being used for counters or desk tops.

  • Reply
    Genelle McDaniel
    September 3, 2014 at 8:58 am

    Love this blog.

  • Reply
    Hank McKinsey
    September 9, 2014 at 5:13 pm

    There are some really great ideas in here!! Time to get me some doors LOL

  • Reply
    Jon Anne Winstead
    September 29, 2014 at 12:40 pm

    Would you have to seal your doors if they were going to be used outside?
    Thanks,
    Jon Anne Winstead

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