How to Add Molding to Closet Doors

Ready to update the master bedroom? Redo the closet doors!

We were SO excited about the transformation of Mike and April’s bedroom and could not believe how much bigger the space felt because it was much brighter! Crazy what a difference white trim and a little paint can do.

Before- master bedroom makeover. Can't wait to see the results!

When we first started planning this project, we walked around the room and asked Mike and April what they wished they could change and they shared how they weren’t in love with their closet doors. They said that these doors felt way too dark for the space and because the dark doors took up almost an entire wall in the room, Mike and April felt the look outdated the whole room. We agreed.

Don’t get us wrong, having almost an ENTIRE WALL of closet space sounds amazing to us, but masking that storage with dark and outdated doors was ruining the aesthetic of the room and we were excited that Mike and April felt the exact same way. We left that “meeting” and immediately started brainstorming a closet door makeover.

Should we just buy brand new doors?Master bedroom- before- those doors!

To be perfectly honest, buying brand new doors for this project was not really an option because we didn’t want to waste such a large part of our budget on doors. We were confident that there was a DIY solution that would transform the look of these originals without breaking the bank. And that’s when we stumbled upon this tutorial via DIY Design.

Closet Door Makeover – Our InspirationOur inspiration- these amazing modern doors

Image and inspiration via Room for Tuesday

Oh. My. Goodness….. we were immediately sold! You know how much we LOVE board and batten around here (maybe a bit too much at times), and these doors felt very similar to that look. The wood detail was the clean, classic, and detailed look we were going for and the tutorial proved that this project was perfect for our budget.

Blogger FailAnd after- modern, updated and stunning

Unfortunately, on the day of the makeover, we didn’t get a chance to take progress pics. We had every intention to document the process step-by-step, but the day turned out to be much more chaotic than we anticipated so those pics never happened. But we will tell you how it all went down (or you can follow this tutorial when Casey did the exact same project in her own home!).

Prep WorkSupplies- Kilz and Valspar paints

The night before the project, we removed the closet doors, labeled them so we knew exactly where to hang them again, and then primed the doors with the same paint as we used on the trim (KILZ Hide All Primer in White).

We loved the tutorial (from above) so much that we actually printed it out and made packets for the volunteers to read before/during the project. If you are looking to recreate this look, here are a few things to keep in mind.

Closet Door Makeover – Supplies

  • Lattice
  • Nail Gun
  • 1″ nails for nail gun (short enough so they don’t go through the door)
  • Miter Saw
  • Safety Glasses
  • Liquid Nails
  • Caulk
  • Caulk Gun
  • Painter’s Putty
  • Tape Measure
  • Laser Level
  • Primer
  • Paint (White Semi-Gloss, same as we used on the trim)
  • Paint brush
  • Mini Roller + Sleeve
  • Sanding block

Tips and Tricks We Learned Along the WayPaint- ready to roll!

  • We primed all of the lattice before attaching it to the doors because we wanted to save time on the project day. This also helped us get the lattice primed quickly. This is not necessarily the only way to paint it, but it did work well for our situation
  • Hang the vertical strips at least a half-inch from every side of the door’s edges so that the wood does not interfere with the ability to open or close the door. #thatwouldbebadThis liquid nails caulk gun is key for the transformation
  • Use both liquid nails (aka glue) and short nails to secure each piece of lattice to the doors
  • The volunteers found it best to secure 4 pieces to create a border around each panel before starting on the middle horizontal stripsWhen the project was done- the doors look fantastic!
  • IMPORTANT: One of the biggest lessons we learned (thank goodness not the hard way) was to hang the doors back up before hanging the horizontal pieces of wood in the middle of each bordered panel. We didn’t realize it at the time but the 4 doors were not perfectly lined up with one another. If we would have gone with just measurements and not considered the context of each door next to one another, we could have had horizontal pieces that did not match up from door to door. #yikesWe love how these closet doors turned out
  • To eliminate this potential problem, we hung the doors back up before starting to hang the horizontal strips of lattice. We took a laser level and ran it across the entire wall and made sure to hang each piece of lattice using that laser line as a reference. This super important step ensured that all of the horizontal strips of lattice were perfectly lined up with one another across the entire wall.From every angle, the doors turned out great

After Hanging the Doors & Attaching the Wood

After we had all of the strips of lattice in place, we followed the exact same finishing steps as we have done when we DIY-ed board and batten. We caulked all the seams, added painter’s putty to the nail holes, sanded and painted with two more finishing coats of Valspar’s “Pure White” in semi-gloss.

The hardware really pulled the doors together with the room

Finally it was time for one our favorite parts of this project — adding this gorgeous hardware! I mean, can you even?! The sleek, black hardware was the amazing finishing touch on this DIY project.

Cost BreakdownAgain- this the room before we updatedAnd here's the stunning after photo

Closet door makeover - how to add trim to bifold doors

All together, this project cost us less than $100 in supplies and would’ve cost even less if we weren’t counting the paint we used not only on these doors but throughout the trim in the entire room. We can’t even believe these are the same exact doors we started with. Replacing these doors instead of DIY-ing them could have cost us up to $500. 

If you missed the FULL reveal of his room, be sure to check that out here! And if you want to see the full tutorial for this project, head to this bi-fold door makeover.


The Year of Casey

Hey there!

I’m Casey Finn, the voice behind The DIY Playbook. I’m a Chicago gal teaching you how to design, DIY, and maintain your home…by yourself! Learn more about me right here.

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