Outdoor Living
Apr 21, 2009

How to design the front door

How to design the front door Author: Style At Home

Outdoor Living
Apr 21, 2009

How to design the front door

The Victorians placed great importance on first impressions -- the front entrance revealed much about a house and its inhabitants. Today, the front door has evolved to become the very essence of curb appeal and an exciting opportunity for personal expression.

  • Add presence with exterior lighting. Consider scale and proportion, erring on the side of an overscale fixture as opposed to a blink-and-you’ve-missed-it one.
  • Typically 4" to 6" high, house numbers should be placed near the front door and under a light or on a contrasting background, which allows for clear visibility at night.
  • Paint your door a statement colour that stands out from the rest of the house. Try a gorgeous historical blue -- strong but softened slightly with grey undertones, and not something you see every day.

Good to know
Lighting will feel more welcoming if it’s lower, so don’t hang the fixture too high. General guideline: a wall-mounted fixture should be approx. 66" to 72" above the ground.

Best best & eco option
Habitat for Humanity ReStore: Check out a ReStore (habitat.ca) in your area for an amazing selection of new and used building materials, including reclaimed exterior doors and surrounds -- even paint! 


Check out these 6 additions that will get any front door a second-look:
House numbers
Their style should work with other exterior hardware, but they don’t have to match.

Mail slot Travellers, rejoice! Thanks to a slot, your mail will be safe and dry inside the house while you’re away, plus it's a wonderful ornamental detail.

Doormat A key accessory that saves your floors, the doormat is also a must-have finishing detail, and there are so many styles to choose from.

Urns Planted with flowers and/or seasonal greenery, urns are one of the prettiest ways to say welcome.

Door knocker Add some sparkle with a polished-brass knocker -- jewelry for your door! You can’t go wrong with a classic ring or S style.

Doorbell Add old-world charm with this darling ding-dong!

8 easy, inexpensive ways to improve curb appeal
1 Repaint your door (and trim).
2 Update front light fixtures.
3 Enhance the entry with new house numbers.
4 Replace door hardware.
5 Flank the entrance with planters.
6 Choose a new doormat in natural coir or basic black.
7 Add a new mailbox.
8 Consider removing your screen door.

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How to design the front door