Monday, October 27, 2008

My New Front Door

20 years ago, soon after we bought our mid-century (as they call it today), ranch style house in the country, I painted a home-made and homely front door. It was sturdy and utilitarian, but I always longed for a front door with a window.

Well, several weeks ago I ordered my new wood-textured fiberglass door with a 3/4 glass insert. I struggled with choices, but fiberglass won out because of its excellent insulation and durability. Also, I saw a sample of a stained fiberglass door in the store, and decided that I would stain the interior of the door to match the rest of our woodwork. I also found a glass pattern that I loved.

 
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What I didn't know until after the purchase was that staining fiberglass is a very long process. Because the surface cannot absorb the stain, you have to just let it dry. It takes 48 hours--that's right, 2 days--before you can finish or restain the door. In my case, I had to do do two layers of stain to get the color right.

 
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In the meantime, I was staining the moulding around the door. Part of it was raw wood, part had a white primer on it. Can you tell the difference?

 
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So after 4 days of staining and drying, I could put the clear coat (polyurethane) on. Of course, I needed to put at least 2 layers of that on with 24 hours of drying time between coats.

Now we are talking close to a week and I had only one side done!

I wanted to paint the outside of the door, so we flipped over the door and I was ready to paint. Next surprise was that although the fiberglass was primed coming out of the factory, expert advise was to put on another primer so that the paint would adhere well. Okay, what's one more day?

 
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Of course, I've learned over the years that it is near impossible to envision a lot of color from the little 1/2 by 1 inch sample at the store, so I bought a color in one of those new handy sample jars. Yep, I love red.

 
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Finally I was ready to put on my "Ladybug Red" high-gloss, oil based enamel paint.

 
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Three coats of red (24 hours drying time between) later, the door was finished. Mike and I hung it today and WOW!!

 
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Does that say "Welcome!" or what!

4 comments:

Rachel said...

You're door looks great! I can't wait to come see it in person!

jt said...

Wow, your new front door looks wonderful! I had no idea you could stain fiberglass and have it look so exactly like wood. I am impressed with your skill and patience!

Anonymous said...

Love your new front door.
Even though the process
seemed to take forever, it
definitely was worth it!!

Anonymous said...

Yes, it is beautiful and so welcoming.
Thanks so much for the nudge to check out your blog. I got home brain-dead from Mom's move and jet lag. Then Kevin got sick...not really sick but miserable..then they tried to put him in jail for turning right on a red light after stopping right after going to church at 6am. It has been stressful and I kept thinking I was missing something on the computer whenever I sat down...but darned if I knew what.
The blessing in it all is I had lots to enjoy when I did get to it and now will be visiting daily wondering why you are so slow.

Love you, Toni
PS Mom is amazingly happy and busy and feels great. She has forgotten being so sick and not wanting to move. I can't believe it all happened so fast.