interiors & styling

Selecting Interior Doors & Hardware Style

Selecting My Interior Doors & Hardware Style - roomfortuesday.com With each renovation comes a lot of tough design decisions that will influence the way the entire home turns out. One of those big choices is selecting the interior door style and the hardware that accompanies each door. I’m sharing my selection process for our current home renovation, the doors and hardware we’ll install throughout the entire house, and I’m even putting some myths to rest in a quick Q&A. Click through to read all about it and see what I settled on!

I’ll begin by showing you our existing doors and why I decided to trade them in the first place… here is the BEFORE:

Selecting My Interior Doors & Hardware Style - roomfortuesday.com Sure- they’re decent doors, but they’re not ideal. I figured a list of things I dislike about our existing doors would help you see my thought process… this is why I’m not into them:

  • They’re hollow core (super lightweight- they just feel cheap).
  • The top ogee style panel feels dated (the home was built in the 90’s and they’re original).
  • They were poorly installed (most of them hang crooked, swing open or shut, won’t stay put, and there are large gaps at the bottom).
  • The hardware is cheap, lightweight, dated, and the finish is actually rubbing off- some handles have even turned silver and lost the shiny brass luster altogether.

After deciding these weren’t worth keeping, the next portion of the equation was to figure out what to replace them with… obviously I landed on a classic, 3-panel style door shown below in our recently finished guest bathroom:

Selecting My Interior Doors & Hardware Style - roomfortuesday.com I’ve shared this on Instagram multiple times, but I always custom order doors from the Lowe’s millwork department. Yes- I am a Lowe’s Partner, but this is NOT sponsored… we’ve paid for every single door in each of our home renovations. I just really love their customizable selections and think it’s the best way to get exactly what you want, so I thought sharing the process could be helpful if some of you are in the same boat. You can look at sample doors on the floor at your local store, but my preference is to ask for this book… it’s free. I keep it in my design file for easy reference.

Selecting My Interior Doors & Hardware Style - roomfortuesday.com There are pages of door styles and examples. It’s really a great resource! I’m a fan of classic square or rectangular paneled doors. We went this solid core option, but with a more intricate / traditional profile. Again- all of that is customizable.

Selecting My Interior Doors & Hardware Style - roomfortuesday.com You can specify so many things:

  • exact dimensions
  • the door swing (which side and inward or outward)
  • pre-hung or not (do you need a new door jamb?)
  • the exact pre-drilled hardware specifications
  • the hinge color & finish
  • the door color & finish (I always just ordered it primed and then paint it myself)
  • the panel style (they have hundreds to choose from and you can even specify the profile / inset)

The lead time is usually 4-6 weeks, so be prepared for that and in plan in advance, but in my experience it’s 100% worth the wait! Let’s move onto hardware selection, shall we?

Selecting My Interior Doors & Hardware Style - roomfortuesday.com I’m the biggest fan of Nostalgic Warehouse and Grandeur Hardware (different brands / same company). We’ve used their products for all three of our home renovations and have yet to be disappointed! The quality is top notch, it’s very heavy hardware, and the finishes are stunning. When I find something I love, I usually stick with it. This time around, I wanted something elegant, dramatic, timeless, and traditional. I landed on the Grandeur Carré Tall Plate Privacy Door Lever. Is that not the most gorgeous door hardware you’ve ever seen?

Selecting My Interior Doors & Hardware Style - roomfortuesday.com I’m planning to mix and match their Carré collection throughout the house. Last time, I did the same thing…. the room entry doors received larger hardware and french doors or closets got a different treatment- just to mix it up and add depth. For closets, I’ll use the Carré Short Plate hardware. That brings to me to my next point- it’s perfectly ok to mix and match hardware, as long as they feel cohesive and are of the same finish! That is one of my most asked questions. Here is the perfect example from our previous house…

Selecting My Interior Doors & Hardware Style - roomfortuesday.com In our previous home, I mixed the Craftsman Hammered Knob with the Homestead Oval Knob. Given their backplate styles match and the vintage brass finish is consistent, they work really well together and keep the room interesting (remember the color blocked hallway?)…. these 3-panel doors were also Lowe’s special order, FYI. Before I wrap things up, I promised a quick Q&A to debunk some door & hardware design myths!

Selecting My Interior Doors & Hardware Style - roomfortuesday.com

Q&A…
  • Do interior doors need to match throughout the entire house? I vote yes to the overall style… size- definitely not.
  • Does the door hardware need to match throughout the entire house? No, but I do like the finish to be consistent.
  • Is there a standard measurement for mounting door hardware? Yes! The knob or lever should fall somewhere between 34 and 48″ above the floor… I like to see what works best visually, as well as consider the height of the family who inhabits the home.
  • Should the style or architecture of the home influence the door style? Absolutely! You should definitely be mindful of the architecture, existing millwork, and exterior when choosing your door style.
  • Are custom doors super expensive? In my experience, I’ve found they’re not much more than buying a readymade option. It totally depends on what style you want and how many “extras” you add. I save money by painting the door and drilling the hardware myself.
  • What is your best tip to avoid buying doors that will quickly become dated? Avoid any arched panels and stick to straight lines. You can’t go wrong!
  • Would you save or splurge on the door OR the hardware? I’d save on the door and splurge on the hardware.
  • What finish do you paint your doors? I prefer semi gloss! It’s easy to clean and has the perfect sheen… glossy, but not too shiny.
  • What is your favorite hardware finish? Antique brass… it’s just a personal preference.
  • Do the door hinges have to match the hardware? Ideally yes, BUT in our previous home- some of the hinges were black and it surprisingly didn’t bother me. I think it depends on the surroundings in the room. For example, our bathroom was the perfect spot for my accidental black hinges because of the nero marble floor tile. It felt like it was intentional even though I messed up the order (oops).
  • Are solid core doors worth the extra money? YES. In photos you’ll never know the difference- they look equally as amazing, but the weight of the door in person feels so much more expensive if it’s heavier.
  • Can you also special order bifold and french doors from Lowe’s? Yep! We’ve done it and they’re wonderful. You can even order exterior doors- we’ve done that too.
  • Do you like your hardware for the new house (guest bathroom)- using a lever instead of a knob? 100%! I’m smitten. Again, it’s a personal preference (knob vs. lever).

Selecting My Interior Doors & Hardware Style - roomfortuesday.com Let me know if you have any other questions in the comments below! I hope this door & hardware post will be helpful for some of you. It’s a big, expensive decision that can really make or break the overall aesthetic of a home, but the process shouldn’t be daunting.

You Might Also Like



  • interiors & styling

    How We Choose : Hardware

    Two new series in one week?! Insane… I know. Things are getting wild here at Room for Tuesday. Ha! In all seriousness, I’m just as excited to start this collection as the Room...

  • interiors & styling

    Statement Door Knobs

    So far during our renovation, there are a few items that have been gaining attention. I just found out that House Beautiful magazine is going to feature our door hardware (pinch...

  • Total Renovation Recap - roomfortuesday.com
    interiors & styling

    Total Renovation Recap

    Today we closed on a new house to renovate and are saying goodbye to our current home. Moving is always bittersweet for me. There is so much to look forward to,...

  • interiors & styling

    Paneled Bi-Fold Closet Door DIY

      Since my closet post and guest room feature, I’ve had a lot of people ask for a tutorial on paneled bi-fold closet doors. In hindsight, I would’ve taken very specific images...

  • Reply
    Peggi
    March 13, 2019 at 4:09 am

    Of all the wondrous details to draw my attention in your guest bath reveal, that lever doorknob really wowed! The finish looks so luxe. We’re lucky to have mostly vintage (though random!) doorknobs and nice solid wood interior doors, but I probably should change our exterior hardware; it’s basic and ghastly! You are so thorough in your renovations. I guess I’ve only ever decorated and fixed egregious issues room by room. Planning door styles and hardware throughout the house…my mind boggles.😉 Probably why I couldn’t imagine building a home-decisions!!! Great resources though!

    • Reply
      Sarah
      March 13, 2019 at 10:45 am

      Thank you Peggi! You are lucky- vintage hardware and doors are the best :)

  • Reply
    Karen
    March 13, 2019 at 6:30 am

    Informative post, these details are so important. I never knew about Lowe’s, I just added this weblink to my “reno spreadsheet” for future reference. I think for our home and all our reno phases, doors/doorhardware will probably be at the very end. All our interior doors are off the hallway, and they’re flat-panel from the late 70s (read: boh-ring). I will say though, the laundry room, off hallway and bathroom, has extra heavy doors – makes a big difference when turning on laundry machines (re: baffled sound).

    When we renovated our master bath last spring, our contractor took a basic unfinished wood/glass pane bi-fold door and made it into french doors. Since the trim was so thin, a standard door handle wouldn’t work, so I went with the hardware I used in my kitchen (in satin brass), and ordered a round backplate to “beef” it up. We installed a drop-lock from the top. Painted a glossy black, they’re quite pretty, and fit the space perfectly:
    https://www.instagram.com/p/Bj3bqz0nFja/

    I was traveling when you posted your bathroom reveal, so I wasn’t having my usual pre-work coffee/blog viewing – that space is stunning! I really love the black & white accents, and marble. It’s incredible that you two can DIY like that.

    • Reply
      Sarah
      March 13, 2019 at 12:00 pm

      I love your french doors! Those are gorgeous Karen, and thank you so much for the sweet compliments in regards to our guest bath. Really appreciate that! xox

  • Reply
    Ylva
    March 13, 2019 at 6:43 am

    Hi! I just wanted to add something to the lever vs knob question that might be relevant to consider. A lever is much easier to use for people with disabilities that effect their hands for example arthritis or parkinson. For most people it might not be relevant but it can be good to know. :)

    • Reply
      Sarah
      March 13, 2019 at 12:04 pm

      That’s a great point!

  • Reply
    ellen
    March 13, 2019 at 7:52 am

    It looks beautiful! Can you do a post like this about exterior doors? Or finding a storm/screen door that isn’t awful?

    • Reply
      Sarah
      March 13, 2019 at 12:05 pm

      I’d be happy to once we get to that point! Our exterior doors definitely need updated. I’m not a big fan of storm / screen doors, so we probably won’t install any of those. xo

  • Reply
    Kim Beck
    March 13, 2019 at 8:00 am

    I love your eye for detail. I was very intrugued by the black toilet seat. It sooo works and has inspired me to do the same in my powder bath re-do.
    Do you know if Lowe’s can do custom front doors as well? Thanks.

    • Reply
      Sarah
      March 13, 2019 at 12:06 pm

      Thank you so much Kim! I can’t wait to hear about how the black seat looks in your powder room. Lowe’s also does custom exterior doors. We ordered exterior doors for our previous home from there as well and they were wonderful.

  • Reply
    Erin Zubot
    March 13, 2019 at 12:03 pm

    The house I’m currently in we used solid core doors for the first time (most in my area use hollow) and I couldn’t agree with you more about how much more luxurious they feel. They have a super added bonus of muffling sound so much better too, I didn’t realize it until I lived with them, and closing the bedroom door really blocks out most of the sounds from the house, including my teenage son’s late night video gaming!

    • Reply
      Sarah
      March 13, 2019 at 12:08 pm

      That is such a great point I should’ve included! The sound proofing is definitely an added benefit for solid core doors! Thanks for bringing that up, Erin :)

  • Reply
    natasha
    March 13, 2019 at 1:05 pm

    Thank you for this super helpful post! in fact, this will be our next Reno project — what design you would suggest for
    Low ceilings to visually add height? I am thinking 2-3 square panels?

    • Reply
      Sarah
      March 13, 2019 at 5:55 pm

      So glad to hear that Natasha! I think it’s less about the panel shape and more about the color, finish, and millwork. I’d keep the style consistent with the architecture of your home. Hope this helps :)

  • Reply
    Stacy
    March 13, 2019 at 4:11 pm

    When you know you’re going to replace all of the doors in the house, do you typically do them this way – one at a time as you renovate each room – and if so, why? Is it just a budget thing? I REALLY need to replace my interior doors, but I imagined I’d buy them all at once. For some reason I hadn’t even considered replacing them room by room but now that seems like it’s probably how everyone does it.

    • Reply
      Sarah
      March 13, 2019 at 5:54 pm

      Great questions Stacy! With our first home, we did them all at once…. with the second home, we did them by each room. For us, it was just based on how we renovated (rather than a budget thing). We know they’ll all be replaced eventually- it’s just easier for us to make the change when we tackle each room. It also prevents having to live with a “half finished” look while waiting to renovate a specific room. Before we swap the door, we pull of the casing, pull up the threshold, etc. If we’re not ready to replace any of those materials that “connect” to the door just yet, it makes more sense to do it all at once. Hopefully that makes sense!

  • Reply
    Lena
    March 13, 2019 at 6:31 pm

    This post is amazing! We just bought a 47 year old Cape Cod style home from the original owners and the orange oak doors and trim need to go. Who knew Lowe’s had custom interior door options?! Thank you for being a wealth of knowledge in the renovation process. I love that you take into consideration the style of the home. Our current home has a hodgepodge of modern and traditional elements. Doors are traditional and half of the windows are as well and then the rest of the windows have no grids and are large mid century modern looking. It’s so weird. And don’t even get me started on the dinky baseboards in the room with 12 foot ceilings. It was your blog where it clicked why the room felt so off. Again, thank you so much for sharing your knowledge. I love that you discuss in detail the details.

    • Reply
      Sarah
      March 13, 2019 at 8:46 pm

      Thanks Lena! I have ALWAYS wanted a cute Cape Cod. I’m envious! So happy to help and share resources :) Wishing you the best of luck with the updates. It’s amazing how listening to the home will transform the aesthetic and make it feel “right”. xox

  • Reply
    Jaana
    March 14, 2019 at 1:44 pm

    I just love that blue door in the bathroom, so sweet and perfect!!! Wondering if the wall color is the same as the door but in different finish?

  • Reply
    Jen
    March 14, 2019 at 1:50 pm

    This post comes at such a great time, replacing our interior doors is next on the (never ending) list of projects to complete in our home. We also need to replace the door that leads from the interior into our attached garage. Do you know if these doors are fire rated for that use, or have another solution perhaps?

  • Reply
    Brittany
    March 14, 2019 at 5:27 pm

    Do you have any suggestions for picking doors to meet a 1950/1960s era home? Thank you!

  • Reply
    Kim B.
    March 15, 2019 at 1:53 am

    Honestly that bathroom is just so stunning, every time I see a little piece of it I’m in love all over again!!! You really made this look like something from a much older house or classic hotel.

    We have a totally weird thing in our apartment where we have three doors in a row and another one immediately perpendicular to the three! And then three more door FRAMES leading into all this in the immediate vicinity. At some point that definitely needs to be fixed up, but oh my gosh I wouldn’t know where to begin with Door Central!! (We live in France, so no Lowe’s for us!! )

  • Leave a Reply