Once reserved for the ranch, barn doors have made a welcome debut as a rustic, but chic, alternative to traditional interior dividers. Barn doors can add an abundance of charm to home interiors, beautifully separate living spaces, create alcoves and niches, and enhance the architectural appeal of modern homes. Whether you want to authenticate the details of a period home renovation or bring a touch of country to your more modern décor, there is a barn door style and use that is just right for anyone who is willing to open it.
Function on the Farm
In addition to their obvious functionality, barn doors have long served as an enchanting decorative addition on the farm. It held the promise of a family, a bounty, or perhaps a living and operating homestead. Many homeowners adorned their barn doors with family crests, horseshoes, ropes, or family initials.
Barn doors originally served a very distinct purpose: to make it easier to corral livestock into smaller, more manageable spaces. Originally, farmers wanted something to withstand even the most extreme climates, never with the intention to adorn interior living quarters. However, their tried-and-true usefulness has won over the hearts of many homeowners with an eye for the value of practicality.
Today, barns are still just as intriguing as they were in their heyday. So, it is no wonder that these entrances have recently risen in popularity among homeowners wanting to capture the romance of their history and promise of functionality. Barn doors range from the mundane to the ornate, originally designed or repurposed. Oftentimes, they simply serve as an alternative to the usual doors found throughout a home. For those with a large back porch outside adjacent to a large living area indoors, barn doors provide a unique alternative to typical French doors. A redone, vintage barn door can make a great entrance to a pantry in a rustic kitchen.
Consider using a barn door to add decorative charm when needing to close off spaces. Homeowners often install doors that can be closed as needed, creating smaller, separated spaces, whether for entertaining, family, pets, or children. Narrow barn doors can serve to close off a hallway or nook. When visibility is needed, but separation is still a must, a barn door can add beauty to a mundane purpose.
Creative Uses around the Home
In the bedroom, barn doors can serve as a divider for a unique private dressing area. They can also be an alternative to standard closet doors. Some are used to create a restful sitting area or meditation room off of the master suite. When added to the top of the stairs it helps reduce noise from another floor or game room space.
In lieu of purchasing a rustic headboard, use one or more barn doors to create a stylish custom bed. For a creative coffee table option, consider a vintage door laid atop legs and covered with glass for an amazing statement piece in the living room. Some homeowners dislike having a television interfere with the ambience in a room. Sliding double barn doors can easily cover up larger technologies when not in use.
Sliding for Space
There are several different styles of barn doors from overhead to hydraulic. Although, a sliding door best serves most interiors, due to their ease of installation and simplicity of design. Because sliding doors open flush with the walls (often on a unique track with its own rustic appeal) rather than swinging on hinges, they create open and airy living areas without sacrificing your much-needed space.
Uses for beautiful and rustic sliding barn doors are numerous. They serve as the occasional partition for those who want an open space on most days but need a partition for privacy on occasion. Since they remain flush to the wall, sliding barn doors would require minimal furniture moving to redesign spaces, such as opening up the dining area to the living room to create one larger area for entertaining, as needed.
Choosing the Style
Barn doors used to be available only from specialty manufacturers who designed them specifically with utility structures in mind. However, thanks to their rise in popularity, they have since become one of the hottest interior home design trends. Sliding barn door kits are available at many large home improvement stores. Conversely some homeowners opt for a custom design and installation. While most come in a solid wood that is either stained or raw, painting the doors a bold color creates an uncommon focal point for any living area.
Consider salvaging an actual barn door to add a true rustic appeal to your living space. The countryside is filled with these hidden treasures; contact antique dealers or attend fairs to find a one of a kind piece. Doors can be manufactured to capture specific architectural details, but repurposing a door can add the same rustic flair. If more visibility is needed, a carpenter can help install a pane of glass, truly creating a one-of-a-kind entrance.
In the world of charming design in the Lone Star State, the barn door proves that having a purpose is a beautiful thing.