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We installed a sliding barn door kit in our great room not long after moving into our house. It added a nice focal point to an otherwise blank wall, but it was mostly to keep the dogs out of the kids rooms when we weren’t home. We debated on painting or staining it – but in the end decided we liked the natural wood.
After living with it for a couple of years I was ready for a change. I envisioned something a little less farmhouse and a little more modern. I love the clean lines of shaker style doors and knew that’s the look I wanted, so I came up with a plan.
The door kit we purchased from Amazon came with 4 diagonal trim pieces that we never attached. I figured I could trim those down to size to create the additional horizontal pieces I needed and attach them with my brad nailer. The only issue left was to fill the grooves that ran the length of the door.
My first attempt was joint compound. I had used this stuff previously to fill in the grooves on some of the wood paneling at the lake house. At first it worked great! (So great that I painted and rehung the door thinking I was done with this project). About a week later, after the joint compound had time to settle, the grooves reappeared. I reapplied, let it dry, sanded. The grooves came back AGAIN. Total bummer.
On to plan b: hardboard! I decided the easiest thing to do was to just cover each section completely with a thin hardboard. I cut a few panels down to size and used liquid nails to attach the panels to the door. Then I caulked around the seams. I completely neglected to document this part but it worked like a charm!
Now it’s time for paint! ALWAYS prime first. Especially when you’re painting wood. I had some spray primer on hand so I just used a couple of cans of that first. Then I painted the door my favorite gray: Dove by Behr. It was the perfect amount of contrast on the white wall. Be sure to lightly sand between coats to get the smoothest finish!
I absolutely love how this door turned out! It’s simple and modern and is exactly what our great room needed.