Thursday, May 31, 2012

Pocket Doors and Porcelain Door Knobs

When we first found our home, one of the features that we loved the most was the original large pocket door separating the living and dining room.  It was still the original wood before we moved in, as were all the trim and built-ins in the house.  It also came with the original plates and glass door knobs. 

Because we didn't really care for the dark stained wood trim, all of it was painted bright white right away throughout the house, which took weeks but it was so worth it.  The white really made the beautiful trim pop instead of just blending into the wood floor.  And we just loved how the pocket door looked with all the bright white paint.  One of the things we never thought to change was the door knob and backplate.  
 The current one was just not our thing, too Victorian and ornate, but it was one of those details that didn't really seem important so we left it there.  But it always bothered me a little.  I felt it didn't really go with our decor and it made me not really enjoy the pocket door as much as I wanted to.  So, I decided to change that.  I rummaged through my hubby's boxes of found vintage hardware, doorknobs, etc.,
and found some I really loved.
These vintage brass backplates and gorgeous white porcelain door knobs which I just LOVED.  The porcelain doorknobs are heavy (for a door knob) and I love that, too.  The several layers of paint needed to come off the backplates so I grabbed a can of spray stripper.

Warning:  This stuff is super strong and I actually hate using it but it does the job fast.  Use it with care, outside with gloves and a mask.  Here's how they looked after.
I was actually planning to spray paint the backplates with oil rubbed bronze spray paint but I liked them so much after stripping them that I decided to leave them as is.  Hubby and I removed the old hardware and attached these and I LOVE the difference.   (I also gave the pocket door a fresh coat of ultra white paint.)
It may seem like a small detail but sometimes those can make a big difference because we are loving our pocket door much more now.  I love the straight lines of this door knob backplate instead of the ornate look of the other one.
As you can see it is quite large.  We don't shut it often but it certainly comes in handy from 
time to time.  And it really is a beautiful door.

Here's the "before" from the other side.
And after.....
Again, small detail, but big change to us.
I'm so glad I didn't spray paint the backplates.  I'm crazy about this change and think it goes with our home so much more.  And it was FREE!  Now, I guess I better get to work on the other doors.

P.S.  We just repainted our dining room.  If you're interested, the color is called Classic Gray by Benjamin Moore.  :)  The paint on the trim and pocket door is called Ultra White by Valspar.

26 comments:

  1. Looks awesome!! I love chunky porcelain door handles! Our house has copper and brass door hardware (it was built in 1895). In the basement in the floor joists, I found several coffee cans of mortise locks and porcelain handles. They've been sitting around, but NOW I have to do something with them!!


    Terry
    http://www.etsy.com/shop/CityFarmhouseAntique

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    1. Wow Terry! What an amazing find in the floor joists?! So cool!

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  2. so beautiful! my hubby is all about pocket doors and this one is certainly amazing! I love the big knob and vintage details.

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  3. At first I was thinking the original looked great, but after seeing what you changed it to, it looks sooo much better and fits in with the rest of the decor. I actually think one of the original plates was crooked on the door too. I love!!! the look of your house, your style!!!! thanks for sharing it with us!!>

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  4. It looks great!! Great change!

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  5. What a beautiful door and knob too.Your home is beautiful!
    (((Hugs)))
    Anne

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  6. I can't believe the difference it made. I love the new knobs so much more & the back plate is perfect.

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  7. At first I thought, "Oh my, I can't believe she's changed those beautiful knobs!" But when I saw the afters I thought how brilliant you are! The new knobs really fit in with your decor SO MUCH BETTER!
    One of the first things my husband and I did when we bought our little house in the country was to change all of the interior doors to pocket doors. Our house is just under 2,000 sq. ft. and this one small change seemed to add square footage. No more of having a door take up wall space in the rooms. LOVE IT! He doesn't know it yet, but now I'm planning on replacing those inexpensive, hollow doors, with some nice vintage wood, solid doors, which happen to be pretty inexpensive at our local Habitat Restore!
    Love your home! Everything you are doing to it is just my style!

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  8. Love the change! You have such a darling house and love your style! Could you tell me what is the paint color in your living room and kitchen?

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    1. Hi Gena, the paint in the living room is Manchester Tan by Benjamin Moore. The paint in the kitchen is Light Gray by Farrow and Ball. Have a great day!

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  9. Love the change! At first I couldn't believe you would replace the glass knobs but I love the white ones even more. It's amazing what a little paint can do for a room. I'm in the process of painting all of our trim in the entire house. I'm also using Valspar bright white. I love how clean and crisp the room looks when I'm done. One room done ten to go.

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  10. I love the old white porcelain door knobs! When we bought our house there was one on our pantry door and I was determined to keep it. After deciding to paint the pantry door with chalkboard paint, the door knob stood out and compliments the chalk designs well. I wanted to add a porcelain knob to every door, but then I feel like I wouldn't love it as much. We don't have those pretty vintage back plates though, definitely gonna keep my eyes out at the next flea market.

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  11. I can hardly believe this post. I was just about to do the same thing... buy bronze spray paint for our door plates. I will definitely give your method a try. Looks great!

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  12. Wow, what a difference! I love it so much more. Isn't it amazing how beautiful the back plates are now? Great job and I love the paint colors.

    xo
    Pat

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  13. Love the change! Hardware makes such a difference. One trick my husband & I discovered while working on our homes painted-over hardware: "cook" the painted pieces in an old crock pot set on medium-low, covered in water and laundry soap, for a few hours. The paint falls right off the metal! It might take a bit longer than chemical stripping (soaking time) but it works so well for these types of projects.

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  14. Hey! What type of spray paint stripper do you use? I've never used spray form before. My husband and I just purchased a 100+ year old home with LOTS of door knobs and hardware to clean :) Thanks!

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  15. Hey, just happened upon your blog and happened to love it and your home decor! A Lot! I especially love your dining table redo (exactly what I've been looking for). Anyways, I got to reading and found this post. I love what you did with the door, but I was also wondering if you still had the old knobs and back plates? If you were planning to just throw them out, I'd love to take them off your hands, but also if you don't want to just give them away I'd love to buy them if they're not too expensive. :) Let me know what you think. Also my email is: hockeyhappy_1@yahoo.com

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  16. I would LOVE your old knob and plate if you no longer want it! I need one for an old door I'm fixing up. Love your blog. It's Inspiring and can't wait to own my own home and apply some of your ideas! Like the stairs!

    Amanda

    Strongside1706@yahoo.com

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  19. I love your entire house! There are so many people I know who would think you were crazy for not loving the ornate one, but I love that someone agrees with me! I'm a young mom in a starter home, but I can not wait until we get our dream of an old house (ours is 1965, but that's not old enough) and we want a farm too :). Your house is great inspiration!!

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  21. Ah! Hell lot of a difference. The old one's quite antiquqy it seemed. The new one's much better. Loved it!

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  22. Good job in bringing life to your doors, Diana! The knob not only complements the overall look of the door, but it makes a very eye-catching contrast. It's amazing how small details can greatly improve how a simple door looks. Thanks for sharing! :)

    Danielle Bailey @ Vinyl Lume Inc

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  23. Hi
    That is so cute, I would of never thought of that. I am definitely making me one or maybe a few! Loldoor knob turner

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