Black Doors: Classic, Stylish, Timeless

They say you ‘can’t go wrong with a little black dress’, and it seems to be the same attitude for doors! Kind of.

With the new year comes plenty of change, and many of our clients are on the verge of ‘back to black’. And why wouldn’t they? Black is a classic and sophisticated style for any front door, offering increased curb appeal and practicality.

Let’s explore some of the overall benefits and bonuses of a black door, as well as some of the most famous and iconic doors in London today.

Victorian door

Why Black?

Often, the colour of your new London front door will be dependent on many factors from the material you choose, the style of your property and the colour of the properties of other features. However, with black, everything ties in perfectly. In fact, Ideal Home research showed black front doors ranked 4th on their list of the ‘most popular colours’, and it’s easy to see why.

Black doors are especially popular on Georgian townhouses as they offer a traditional and timeless look. They also portray power and authority.

Famous Black Doors

One of the most famous doors of all time is, of course, 10 Downing Street, where the current Prime Minister resides and works.

The black paint, amongst the dark brick on the exterior of the house has become iconic for its traditional appearance and has remained black in colour since 1916 – when Liberal Prime Minister Herbert Henry Asquith no longer served the country and the door was painted black instead of green. Today, the door is coated in a high-gloss paint to keep it shiny all year round – and to keep it looking its best for the cameras and constant tourists!

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The door also features other classic decor, including a black iron knocker in the shape of a lion’s head, a replica of the letterbox which was destroyed in 1991, and a doorman on the inside to always be available to open it because the door cannot be opened from the outside.

Another would be the residence of our favourite fictional pipe-smoking detective Sherlock Holmes. The fictional home is located at 221B Baker Street, which today, has been transformed into a Sherlock Holmes museum behind the classic black front door. It’s the perfect tourist spot for fans of the original novels.

period front door

Practicality

We have already stated how a black door can add curb appeal to your home, especially if you’re thinking about having your home valued or if you’re selling up. Black against white brick creates a clean and fresh feel, complementing other features of the windows and brickwork. Black against grey creates a modern and contemporary feel. And, as you know, first impressions are also the last!

Black doors are also super easy to maintain. Marks, scuffs and general wear and tear won’t be as noticeable, compared to white or grey doors. In fact, combine this with an easy-to-maintain uPVC and you’ll have a front door you can be proud of all year round!

Our Recommended Annual Checks

No matter the material it’s made from, or the top-notch quality, it’s hard to protect your wooden front door for the everyday hardships of bad weather and general wear-and-tear. To get the most out of your Victorian door, and to ensure they’re well-maintained for years to come, we recommend going through a basic annual check. And could there be a better time, at the start of a brand new year? Especially after soldiering through the last few months of rain, sleet and snow!

Ask yourself…

Are there any leaks?

This may seem obvious, but often gets overlooked. It’s important to check your London front door for general weather tightness, the main factor being leaks. If your door is letting in water, you may notice some dampness around the frame of the door or the walls that surround it. If there is, it may be time to replace the weather seals to prevent mould growth. These issues only get worse, so act now before a brand new door may be needed.

London front door

Are there any gaps?
Similarly, you may find there are excess gaps surrounding your door or the frame itself. Again, if weather seals are wearing down, it may cause moisture to enter your home, as well as draughts and noise.

Is the weather bar still secure?

Beneath any front door, you’ll notice a strip of wood, or sometimes metal, across the bottom of your door. This provides protection against outdoor elements such as bad weather. It’s important to make sure this strip is still secure and sealed to avoid moisture getting into your home.

Any problems opening/closing?

You might have noticed your door is sticking or dragging as the years go on. This is common and happens with plenty of use as the screws work themselves loose. The first thing we’d recommend checking is the hinges.

Victorian front doors

It could simply be that the door has ‘dropped’ and it requires some slight adjustment. We recommend tightening the screws with a screwdriver to fix this. However, sometimes with excess moisture, doors can become warped. Wooden doors tend to ‘swell’ when wet, and ‘shrinks’ again when dry.

Any problems locking/unlocking?

Throughout years of use, you may have noticed that the lock action sometimes sticks. A sticky lock can sometimes be caused by the door itself. Try testing your keys when the door is open and again when it is closed and compare. If it works fine with the door open, the door could be the issue. If not, you may be in need of a new lock.

Bespoke front doors

Is it time for a re-finish?

Despite our doors being made from quality Accoya wood and lasting typically twice as long, even in the harshest weather environments, we still recommend keeping an eye of the general look and feel of your door. It’s important to look out for signs of cracking or peeling. If you spot some, it may be time for a refinish to protect your door from the effects of harsh winter weather.

 

New Year, New Projects!!! Reasons to Replace Your Front Door For 2020

Some doors close, others open, and many of us go the extra mile and decide to buy a brand new one! But hey, it’s not only a new year but also a new decade, making it the perfect time for fresh starts and brand new projects!

Here are six inspiring reasons you should consider a new front door in 2020.

1. First Impressions

Maybe you’re not quite finished with your festive partying, or perhaps family and friends are still in town and planning a visit. What better warm welcome is there than a brand new door to enhance the main entrance?

London door

2. Curb Appeal

For those homeowners who are itching for a new start this year and planning to sell up, it’s been said that a stylish and well-kept front door adds thousands to your overall retail value.

As reported in the Daily Mail just a few months ago, John Kingston, of online estate agents Yopa, said: ‘First impressions count when it comes to selling your home. Make sure you have a freshly painted front door and any glass in it is clean’.

It’s seriously a move to consider if you’re making reservations with the property ladder.

3. Cut Those Energy Bills

With a new year comes a very chilly January, so why not get ahead of the game and replace your front door with something more thermally efficient. Our made-to-measure bespoke front doors are the perfect fit to eliminate draughts and block out the cold.

4. Reduce The Maintenance

If your current Victorian front door requires some effort to maintain, either through endless coats of paint or regular finishing, why not make your life a little easier over the next several years?

Victorian front door

Our Accoya doors maintain quality and hold colour twice as long as other tropical hardwoods, making them not only a cost-effective choice, but also a life-saver for time-efficiency.

5. Going Green?

If you’ve been promising some eco-friendly changes, why not use the new year as the perfect opportunity to make them?

As mentioned previously, our doors are made from Accoya wood – a non-toxic and 100% recyclable wood, comprised sustainable sources including FSC, PEFCTM and other regionally certified woods. Not only that, the entire manufacturing process is non-toxic in which nothing is added to the wood that does not already naturally occur in it.

Therefore, not only does Accoya wood protect the environment from the harmful effects of common treatments during its life, but it can also be safely reused, recycled and incinerated when no longer required.

Bespoke front door

6. Bliss

If you live in a busy area, near main roads, close to attractions, or next door to noisy neighbours, you may be considering making some structural changes to your home. Did you know, a solid, double-glazed front door is a great way to keep out the noise?

Create some bliss for you and the family this year with some peace, quiet, extra security, and last but not least, style.

The Benefits of Accoya Wood

Created from sustainably sourced softwood; Accoya wood matches or exceeds the durability, stability and beauty of the very best tropical hardwoods. It originates through Radiata Pine, harvested and then undergoes an acetylation process that is non-toxic to the environment and helps modify the wood to its core.

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At Bespoke Front Door, we use Accoya wood to build all of our doors, and for good reason too. Not only is the wood naturally beautiful and pleasant to look at, but it also offers endless advantages when it comes to durability, maintenance and insulation. Here are just some of the main benefits that come with using Accoya wood.

Increased Durability

The main factor that makes Accoya wood a much superior choice to other tropical hardwoods is its increased durability. The acetylation process eradicates the wood’s property of absorbing water, making if the perfect choice for a long-lasting external door. In fact, Accoya wood can last up to 50 years above ground and is virtually rot-proof. It’s also insect-resistant, with the wood being indigestible to a wide range of insects, including termites.

Consistent Stability

Despite the acetylation process, it does not compromise the wood’s strength. In fact, the hardness is increased, resulting in a wood that is not only strong but also lightweight. It’s the perfect ratio of weight to strength that will aid in any challenging application or project – especially external applications like windows and doors.

Victorian front doors

Natural Insulation

When compared to commonly used hardwoods or softwoods, Accoya offers more natural and effective insulation. Not to mention, swelling and shrinkage is reduced by at least 75% when using Accoya wood, so you don’t need to be concerned about nasty draughts during those chilly winter months. By delivering long term performance here, it will significantly reduce energy costs, making for a long-term investment.

Eco-Friendly

Accoya wood is non-toxic and 100% recyclable, made from legally harvested wood from well-managed sustainable sources including FSC, PEFCTM and other regionally certified woods. Not only that, the entire manufacturing process is non-toxic in which nothing is added to the wood that does not already naturally occur in it.

Therefore, not only does Accoya wood protect the environment from the harmful effects of common treatments during its life, but it can also be safely reused, recycled and incinerated when no longer required.

Reduced Maintenance

Because swelling and shrinkage are reduced by around 75%, and because of the generally increased durability of the wood, Accoya provides a more stable surface in which coatings adhere better. Any paint or film-forming coating will stand the test of time when applied to Accoya wood, resulting in less time maintaining the wood, less money spent on further coats, and less impact on the environment too.

period door

This is another reason it’s such a good choice for external projects like front doors because a quick paint job will typically last twice as long as it would when painted on other tropical hardwoods, in which the paint or varnish may start to split or crack. And, not to mention, it opens a whole new world of possibilities when it comes to colour/finish options, with Accoya wood naturally taking to colour well and effortlessly.

Our Favourite 3 Looks For A Festive Front Door

Christmas is the one time of year we can justify going the extra mile when it comes to decorations, and while the interior of your house may look like a winter wonderland, we mustn’t forget to show off our Christmas spirit on the outside too. Here are three of our favourite looks to get you started.

Christmas Wreaths

Of course, we’ve got to kickstart the list with the classic of all front door decorations – Christmas wreaths!

A Christmas wreath is the perfect way to greet visitors and guests to your front door, showcasing a mix of beautiful greenery, rustic pine cones and holiday-themed ribbons. Not to mention, it’s such an easy finishing touch, whether you plan to pick out a pre-decorated wreath you love and simply hang it on your door for an instant festive look, or if you’re feeling creative and want to purchase a plain wreath to decorate yourself.

Use hot glue to attach ribbons, bells, berries, pine cones, and other Christmas decorations to your wreath. Attach a wire loop around the top of the wreath, cover the wire with all the decorations, and hang the wreath with an over-door hanger. Easy!

London front doors

 

Christmas Garlands

Like Christmas wreaths, garlands are also a popular choice to decorate your home exteriors this winter. It’s so easy to dress up an evergreen garland for your Victorian front door, creating a timeless and classic Christmas-y look. And not only that, artificial garlands are affordable and last in quality, so you don’t have to constantly buy new decorations as each Christmas quickly rolls around.

Why not place your garlands around the frame of your door to create a festive-themed entrance to your home? You can then decorate as you wish, attaching red ball ornaments and ribbons to the garlands, or classic pine cones and holly berries. And, if you’re wanting to go all out, spray from fake snow or glitter to create the ultimate dazzle!

Victorian front door

 

Fairy Lights

We’re sure at this time of year, you’re not lacking in the fairy light department, but why not switch it around and bring the lights outside?

As a quirky alternative to the traditional Christmas wreaths and garlands, a string of weather-proof fairy lights around your door frame with capture attention and sparkle in the cold and dark winter evenings.

Not only do they look beautiful, you can save a pretty penny by purchasing battery-operated lights to keep the electricity bills to a minimum. Not to mention, there isn’t any need for pesky wiring to be threaded through your door frame or windows. You could even wrap them in your Christmas wreaths and garlands to combine a traditional and contemporary look!

period front door

 

Whatever your tastes, Christmas is the perfect time to experiment and get creative. Treat yourself to something new to get your Christmas kickstarted, and above all else, make sure to make it a Christmas to remember. Happy Holidays to you all!

5 Reasons to Replace Your Door This Winter

After a long day at the office, we rush through the door, kick our boots off, remove the woollies, and we cosy up to enjoy the remainder of our evening. Having just passed through, the door is the last thing on our mind, and we often find ourselves pushing these jobs aside for another time – especially with the busy festive period!

What you might not know, however, is that the winter period is the perfect time to think about your home exteriors. Here are five reasons to replace your Victorian front door this wintertime.

London front doors

1. Warmer Homes

If your new London front door project is long overdue, don’t put it off any longer. A new front door could be key to keeping your house warm and toasty through the winter months.

No matter how powerful your heater may be, or the size of your roaring fire, an old door with bad insulation will let all the cold air creep inside your house. Not to mention, decent insulation could keep those heating bills at bay!

2. A Better Fit

Even though old doors could be the root of poor insulation, the same situation could occur with a brand new door – especially if you installed it over the summer. Did you know, during high temperatures, the framework of your entire house can expand? This means, once the temperate drops and your house constricts, you may find gaps around the framework of your door, resulting in cold draughts and a hefty gas bill!

Victorian front door

3. Extra Security

Unfortunately, over the busy Christmas period, break-ins and burglaries are more common. In fact, last year Halifax reported a 35% increase in claims for forced burglaries during the darker months, compared with summertime figures. And not only that, it has been reported that a massive 74% of burglars actually enter the home via the front door.

This is usually due to the darker nights, increased motive with expensive Christmas gifts, or even for shelter from the cold.

period front doors

But, with a strong and sturdy new front door, it can act as a deterrent for intruders, preventing the likelihood of a break-in. There’s no better price to pay for the extra security for your home, and that all-needed peace of mind.

4. Cost-Effective

Another great advantage of winter door replacement is the likelihood of a good bargain! There is less demand for door installations over the winter period, putting you on a shorter waiting list with the probability of a decent discount. From Black Friday sales to holiday promotions, if you’re working from a budget, it could be the perfect time to tick this project off your list.

5. Visual Appeal

As well as being one less thing to do during the summer months, a winter front door installation also has its practicality and visual appeal. It’s the one time of the year you go all-out with exterior decor, whether it’s Christmas wreaths or hanging fairy lights.

london doors

Wouldn’t you agree that a brand new door to match would be the ultimate finishing touch to your outdoor winter wonderland?

It’s the perfect time to get creative, and make a smart investment for your home. Plus, doing so now will mean your home will look great in time for summer!

The Fusion of Old and New

Victorian Front Doors

Grandiosity was the theme of the 19th century, with the Victorian era making history in the innovation of British architecture. It’s safe to say that a statement was made in terms of style, layout and practical features of Victorian properties, all being instantly recognisable today. And, still celebrated of course – even by modern homeowners with the most contemporary of styles.

Technically, a property is only recognised as Victorian if it was built between the late 1830s to the early 1900s. Despite this, you still the classic and timeless design of Victorian-inspired homes up and down the country. From rich Victorian brickwork, gables, bay windows and most of all, Victorian front doors. In fact, it’s still one of the most common front door styles used today.

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Typically, a Victorian door features ornate two-by-two panelling, elaborately carved with an imposing architrave. They also feature brass work and brightly coloured glass panels. This allowed plenty of light into those long narrow hallways but also offered a sense of privacy too.

It’s easy to see that not only are Victorian-era doors beautiful, but they also carry the bonus of modern security and stability, having been constructed from solid hardwood. This makes for a long-lasting and cost-effective choice in the long run, suggesting Victorian doors are the perfect ratio of style and price.

You’ll often find interior designers and general home-owners similarly turning to Edwardian style doors as opposed to Victorian. Although inspired by characteristics of panels and glasswork, Edwardian style doors made their debut a little later, flaunting six panels in total with an extra two at the top, usually with glass installed. Although slightly different in style, both eras are robust and sturdy in appearance, best suited for those looking to give their homes a timeless impression.

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Today, you find homeowners turning to Victorian or Edwardian doors to maintain their property’s traditional aesthetic, but you also find modern homeowners jumping on the bandwagon too. You may not think it but the style looks just as wonderful complementing contemporary homes, especially for homeowners looking to add a touch of classic style and elegance to their home exterior. It’s a stunning trend in which the old is fused with new.

With antique and vintage styles being very much in vogue, it’s an easy and popular choice to take on such a classic and timeless look, whether you’re looking to restore your period property or update the overall style of your home.

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Although the style remains very much the same, modern-day trends are paving the way for a more bright and bold era. Did you know the 19th century looks amazing in colour? Popular choices include vibrant primary colours of red, blue and yellow.

It’s mind-blowing to see how a coat of paint can give a piece of history a new lease on life. And, when you think of the little effort involved, it really is a no-brainer.

Shop our range of bespoke doors, inspired by the Victorian/Edwardian era.