Hope you had a happy 4th of July. We celebrated at home in our red, white, and now blue house.


The siding on our house is a pinkish-brown with dark red shingles on the second story. It is so not us. We aren’t interested in the expense of painting the house, but we were looking for a quick fix to make it more us. The front door seemed like the easiest thing to makeover.

Naturally, I processed through every blue and green pint chip in my arsenal to choose a new front door color. Anything was an improvement over the dingy green-brown door we started with.


As an aside, we would actually like to replace the front door. I hate this one. It is about as basic as they get. I really don’t like the tiny windows at the top, especially since we have a transom window above the door. And, don’t even get me started on the yucky state of the door handle and lock with the mismatched brass keyholes. But a new door is not in the budget right now, so we hoped a quick paint job would give the door a desperately needed pick-me-up.


I taped the final four swatches to the trim next to the door. Everyone chose their favorite, and to my delight we all chose the same color! It was meant to be, or was it…

After a coat of primer and two coats of paint, I was still not sure. You have to realize our neighborhood is full of plain-Jane doors. After two coats our front door was standing out from the crowd, but I am not sure it was in a good way. Add to the fact that I skipped the mandatory association approval for changing house colors (I mean, who has over a month to wait on a door color approval). I was worried the neighbors and association would be coming after us with pitchforks and torches. Okay, it wasn’t that bad, but it still wasn’t good.

The issue was the color was too clean or bright for our house. Colors always look brighter outside in full natural light, too.  Our siding and shingles are very muted colors. I needed to tone down the front door color to fit with the rest of the house, but I didn’t want to buy new paint.

I took my quart of paint back to Home Depot and asked what they could do. I went on a weekday morning (read: when they weren’t busy) and they were more than happy to play around with my paint color to get it just right. It only took two tries and a couple minutes to get it there.


The color we started with was Washed Denim by Martha Stewart.  All they did was add a little more black. The first time it was hardly different. The second time it looked like the same color, but noticeably darker. Plus, I knew if it wasn’t I could just take it back and have more black added.  Just be careful not to add too much black to start with.


I put two more coats of the new paint color on the front door. I knew instantly it was an improvement. The color was toned down just enough to fit with the other muted colors on the house. But it still pops…in a good way.  It is the perfect shade of blue to compliment our house.


The color looks pretty fabulous when the door is open, too.  It matches the artwork in the foyer pretty well.


It feels pretty good to drive up to a house that shows a little of our personality on the outside.  All of our recent visitors have complimented the color, too.  And, no one has come after us with pitchforks and torches for changing our door color…phew!


Moral of the story: If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.  If a paint color seems off, see what the paint store can do to change the color before buying new paint.

Now we are brainstorming what to do with the shutter situation.  We are so not shutter people.



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19 Responses to The One with the Blue Door

  1. Anja says:

    What a beautiful color. I love how you shared the thought process that went into this decision – it often sounds so easy on other blogs.

  2. CohoesMom5 says:

    I like the color. It looks good with the rest of the house.

    For the mis-matched keyholes – try a brown/bronze sharpie on the outide. It won’t hurt the lock and will tone down the brass.

    • Jackie says:

      Good idea to just touch up the keyholes. I honestly had t noticed them until I started painting the door.

  3. riley says:

    Could you just simply remove the shutters?

    • Jackie says:


      We are definitely considering removing the shutters. My only concern is there is no trim on the side of the windows to make them look framed. We are you going to see how it looks o. The window on the porch first.

  4. Diane Williford says:

    If you take down the shutters, you may find the siding underneath is a different color than the rest of the siding. If you aren’t ready to paint the siding, replace the shutters with a style better suited to your style.

    • Jackie says:


      Great point. Mismatched siding would not look any better. We have seen other style shutters around the neighborhood that we like better, so replacements might be a good option.

  5. Gwen says:

    Love love love the door and painted landing with those white (I’m not criticizing but I love them as they make me feel like a cracked egg look recreated to be pots–so unusual). I too have those louder shutters on what I call a CA track home stucco, half circle tile roof. We went to a wedding in the wine country of Paso Robles and there are MY shutter!! Forget dancing, wine, rolling hills of grapes! I’m photographing the perfect shutters with latches for my style house!! Hubby and I are kinda newlywed s so I just knew I’d get them for Christmas….but then came the injury…but YOU. Research!!! Oh. We did “beef up” our plain back windows with wood trim around windows. It gave a finished touch and we do not use shutters back there. We used liquid Naples to add the wood around ,miter cut…we prime red and painted before installation. My hubby did add a few nails for added strength. My sis in law went a step further and had my brother beef up with wood after the wood around windows, just the top of windows. Think extra board, trim on top. It made a huge difference. I’m so with you. I’m not fond of this style of shutters!

  6. Gwen says:

    Oh. As far as doors. I like your door. I like that no one can see in yet you have the interest on top. I just like my plain door. And yours is a step up with the little windows. The color made me think Wow what a classy door. You know Door envy Cuz yours have the little windows. I don’t want a see through door!!! So isn’t it funny how your ‘ugh’ is my dream?!!!!

  7. Molly says:

    I love the door color. Where did you find your planters? I am on the hunt for some. Thanks!

  8. petraerlandson@mac.com says:

    So glad to see your beautiful door! We just ordered a Dutch door for our new house and I have been considering painting it blue/teal outside and the same color inside. I have been feeling a little nervous since it will certainly stand out in our neighborhood and seeing your post gives me confidence to dive in! I know every time I pull up, I will think, now that is MY house. :)

    • Jackie says:

      Go for it. It is important to respect the aesthetic of your neighborhood, but ultimately it is your house. It should reflect you inside and out :)

  9. Sarah says:

    LOVE the color you ended up with. Isn’t it amazing what adding a little black or gray can do to tone paint down?

  10. Jen says:

    Ooooh! It turned out SO amazing! Lovity love love! Can’t wait to see it in person. :D


  11. Love the color…want to paint ours a deep red but curious if you used paintbrushes or rollers or both? Afraid to leave brushmarks. We want to replace our brass hardware as well (I HATE IT LOL) and found a tip at Cassie’s SugarPlum blog to fix it up until we can replace…use Brass Rub’n’Buff. Fixed them up in a jiffy, looks good and ordered it from Amazon. http://hisugarplum.blogspot.com/2013/05/spruced-up-porch.html HTH! Hugz—Suzanne

    • Jackie says:

      Suzanne, I used a combination of brush (good quality Purdy brush) and a foam roller. I used the brush to do the inset frames of the panels first and then followed up with the foam roller on all the flat parts. Sherry from Young House Love just shared her favorite door painting process here.

      Thank you for the tip on fixing up the hardware.

  12. Heather says:

    Pretty! I recently painted our front door a similar color and am noticing it popping up everywhere online! I also hate the front door but don’t have a budget to replace it… We have the little “sunrise” window, gag.

  13. Kristin says:

    Very pretty! Where did you find the white planters? I love!

    • Jackie says:

      Kristin, Thank you. The white planters are from Target. not sure what they are made from, but they are super lightweight when they are empty.

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