How to Decorate Door Frames

Written by nina makofsky
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How to Decorate Door Frames
Frame your doors with style. (ancient door in topkapi image by timur1970 from

Door frame decorating helps set the tone for your home's architecture and interior decor. Your exterior door frames contribute to people's first impressions of your house, and your interior door frames punctuate the space. If your interior door frames have no doors, they still serve as passageways and can have colours and decorations that transition your design from one room to the next. Have some fun decorating door frames by experimenting with colours and decorations. The relatively small space means that you can quickly and cheaply update the decor.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • Architectural elements
  • Wood putty
  • Paint
  • Hardware
  • Tile
  • Stencils
  • Accessories
  • Lighting

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  1. 1

    Clean the areas around your doors. A long broom can reach rafters and trim that tend to collect cobwebs. Remove stacks of newspapers and other clutter from the areas around exterior doors. For interior doors, clear away the papers and projects that tend to accumulate around doorways and in built-in shelves nearby.

  2. 2

    Add prominence to your door frames with architectural elements. On exterior doors, use stained glass windows or long columns to flank the door frames. For interior doors, attach a lightweight plaster arch that extends from one top corner of a frame to the opposite corner.

  3. 3

    Inspect the finishes on your door frames. Look for dents, holes and nicks that you can fill with wood putty. After the wood putty dries, sand the areas to make them flush with the door frames.

  4. 4

    Prime and paint your door frames. Two coats of primer followed by two coats of paint should suffice. Paint each door frame a contrasting colour from the walls for a bright, bohemian look. Match your door frame with the door and the surrounding wall if you want to create the illusion of more volume in the room.

  5. 5

    Create decorative trim around interior or exterior doors. A thin line of painted tile has an artisan look. If you prefer a more lightweight look, use stencils to paint designs of crawling ivy, ethnic motifs or paisley around doors.

  6. 6

    Decorate door frames with lightweight pieces that do not obstruct people passing through the doorways. String up party lights around a door for a festive look or for special occasions. A valance of fabric has a feminine look over a doorway.

Tips and warnings

  • Semigloss or stain finishes hide the scuffs and dirt that accumulate on door frames.
  • Avoid using high gloss finishes on door frames, because the finishes highlight every nick and dent.

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