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How to Choose Your Front Door Color

Your front exterior door represents you and your family to the world, so it's important that the color say something about you and your tastes. Painting a front door is a quickly accomplished chore, so don’t be afraid to try something unusual or bold. If you’re not happy with the results, it’s easy to repaint it with another color.


Take a picture of the front of your house with a digital camera. Enlarge it to 4 by 6 inches and print it out using your computer and printer. Use a sharp craft knife to cut out your front door from the photo. Slip paint chips from the hardware store behind the photo where the front door would be so you can see how your home looks with a variety of colors.


Choose a darker shade for the front door if your home’s brick or siding is light; choose a light or bright shade if the rest of your home is dark. The contrast will draw attention to your entryway, making the door the focal point of your home. Choose a more neutral shade if your home or its trim is already an eye-catching color.


Assess your home’s style and your own tastes. Decide if you would prefer a traditional color, or if you’d rather break the rules and go with a completely unexpected color. For example, if your home has traditional styling, a red or gray door emphasizes its sophistication, whereas a vibrant gold door adds a more whimsical touch.


Choose the mood you wish your front door to set. Go with a bold shade to make your home’s entrance cheerful and welcoming. Pastel or muted shades exude serenity and set your guests at ease.


Keep your front step and foundation plantings in mind when choosing a front door color. If your steps are brick, choose a color that coordinates or contrasts with the color of the brick. You may want to play up the color of spring flowers or autumn foliage of the shrubs that surround the front door.


Pick up a color within the walls of a brick home or brick facade when choosing a front door color. This is especially important if the brick is multicolored.


Consider variations of the classic red front door. Many people consider a red door to be a symbol of welcome as well as a good luck omen. A bright red door on a white house with black trim is a classic look. But if bright red doesn’t work with your home’s colors, you can gain the same effect by using terra cotta red for a blue or gray home or rose red for a cream-colored house.


If you live in a neighborhood with a homeowner’s association, check the association’s rules and regulations regarding exterior color before you paint your front door. Some associations restrict choices for siding and trim to a few specific colors. Similarly, if you reside in a historic district, local regulations may restrict exterior color choices to those that are historically accurate, so be certain that your color choice complies before painting.

Bruno, Gwen. "How to Choose the Color for an Exterior Door." Home Guides | SF Gate,

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