By Dena Amoruso
One of the great things about making changes to your home is seeing just how truly transforming one or two changes can be. Interior paint can lighten or tone down the home's ambience; a new carpet can make you feel as if you are living in a brand new house, and the change-out of just one doorway can bring about an entirely new image to a room or an entire home.
Indeed, if windows have been referred to as the "eyes" of a room, then doors are the mouths, speaking volumes about the rooms they complement. Take the entry door, for example. How much of an instant impression does a beautiful front door make on you? Windows, cut glass, carved oak, arched, or decorated with brass accents? While waiting for this door to open, it's an eye-catching item to study, from a visitor's point of view. Simple front doors can be replaced by fancier ones to exude your own sense of style. Even a modest home can seem palatial with a beautiful front door as a greeting.
Your family room can be transformed by the change-out of a sliding door to a French door, opening wide to a manicured yard, or just "look" like a French door with panes of glass and beautiful hardware (there are several manufacturers of sliding French doors.) But what if you prefer more wall space in the family room and less glass? You can investigate the possibility of changing a larger sliding door to a single "atrium" door and adding sheet rock, texture and paint to the recipe, making more room for sofas and entertainment pieces.
Master bedrooms can become a refuge for the weary by adding a door to the outside, possibly leading to an existing (or future) bubbling outdoor spa and the greenery beyond. Even second story master bedrooms may have the option to add a door and balcony, creating a covered patio area below.
An old world, but still popular idea, is the installation of single or double interior French doors to a living room, office, or den, giving occupants a view of activity elsewhere, but adding an elegant dimension to the floor plan. Even with closed doors, these rooms can become aglow within when entertaining and a showpiece of your own personal decorating and style.
You may not want to underestimate the power of a door and all it represents both physically and metaphysically. Sound abstract? If one really considers how we use the word to describe so many allegorical facets of our existence, it doesn't sound so far-fetched. From "opening the door of opportunity", or "closing the door on that subject" to literally "slamming the door in one's face", doors are almost as cultural as they are physical.
So, next time you see a door that really makes an impression on you, think about what it is that brings it to your attention, and you'll probably never think of doors in the same way again. New home builders have added more an more creative options for doors to their design center repertoire, so ask the design consultant for all the possibilities. For a wealth of information on doors and door manufacturers, use you favorite search engines on the Internet, or check out the National Association of Home Builder's web site and search by product.
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