Give plain flat doors an elegant touch of texture with this easy-to-master painting technique.
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Remove the knobs and door hardware, but leave the door on its hinges. For an unfinished door, sand smooth and apply a coat of primer. For a previously finished door, sand and wipe clean. Apply two base coats (Sugar and Cream shown) to the entire door and let dry overnight.
Print a copy of the Door Painting Guide. Using a tape measure and T-square, lay out two rectangles -- one inside the other -- for each faux panel using light pencil lines. For most doors, you’ll have at least two panels, one above and one below the doorknob. You can also divide the large panels into smaller ones on the top or bottom.
If you don’t have a T-square, make a substitute by taping a straightedge to a carpenter’s square.
Using painter’s tape, mask around the outside of each faux panel. Then use tape to define an accent color band that’s 1-3/4 inches wide all four sides. Trim tape with a crafts knife to form sharp corners.
Seal the area of the accent color band by applying a light coat of the base color using a small roller. When the base color is dry, roll on a coat of accent color (Cliveden Sandstone shown). Apply a second coat as needed and let dry overnight. Remove the painter’s tape.
By sealing the edge of the tape with the same color as what’s already on the door, any paint that seeps beneath the tape edge will blend in and help create a crisp edge for the contrasting colors to be applied.
Tape along the inside edge of the accent color band. Then use tape to define a 1-1/4-inch-wide strip for the shadow color. Seal the tape edges with a light coat of base color on the inside band edge and a light coat of the accent color on the outside edge of the band.
When taping over freshly painted areas, use a painter’s tape labeled for delicate surfaces.
Mix equal amounts of the base and accent colors and apply this combination to the 1-1/4-inch band. Recoat as needed.
After the paint dries, carefully remove the tape and touch up small flaws with an artist’s brush. Reattach the doorknob and hardware.