VINTAGE DOOR: Decorative, Functional, & Illuminating


By now, I’m sure you’re aware I love to decorate with my own original creations. So, a few months back, when I found a gorgeous vintage door at the Cave Creek Thieve’s Market – I knew I’d have to come up with something special for it. I could have just leaned it against the wall and it would have looked wonderful, but I wanted to make it functional, too.

Hmm… what to do, what to do?

I fell in love with this color. It’s funny, because the color was the reason I was drawn to the door in the first place(that, and the $40 price tag) – but I ended up using the cream-colored side, instead.

The door stood in my living room and my mind went wild with ideas. Because the door was missing the upper panel, I planned on using that as an opportunity to add upholstery. The idea of adding shelves came soon after. Then BOOM! “YEAH! I’ll add a light fixture!”

I made a little “pinboard” of all the elements, in my head; I was thinking: chippy cream door, neutral striped linen, natural wood, and a galvanized barn sconce. Now, I just need to figure out what, where, how and how much. I googled outdoor light fixtures – I found the most gorgeous sconces, but they were all around $200 or so. The search continued, until I stumbled upon this glorious find on lowe’ It was exactly what I was looking for and only $24.98!

Here are some of the other materials I used:


I just kinda figured it out as I went. Along with the sconce, I purchased the wood, composite board, and extension plug from Lowe’s. There, the employees answered all my questions and cut the wood and composite material for my project – All I had to do was measure the dimensions.

1. After I purchased all the materials, I stapled(with a staple gun) the batting onto the composite board. When I stapled on the fabric, I made sure it was tight, but not too tight – because then it can pull and look sloppy. I stapled the full right side and then the left. I did the same for the top and bottom, this way it was all even.

2. I measured where the sconce needed to be and sliced tiny holes(in the now upholstered board) for the screws and the extension wire. I, then, attached the extension wire to the sconce wire with caps and electrical tape(this converted the light to plug-in). I tested the light(it worked!) and secured the fixture to the board.

3. After the wood was slightly sanded and cleaned, I sporadically applied Annie Sloan Dark Wax. I let it sit for a while, and wiped off the excess – then buffed. This added warmth and polish to the unfinished pine.

4. Because I am who I am, I measured once for the location of the shelf brackets and wasted no time screwing them in. My measurements were, of course, wrong and I had to repeat this step :/

5. I laid the door on the ground and placed the the board in the panel grooves, and drilled in the two shelves. To be honest, I didn’t really check if the shelves were level, but nothing has fallen off and it looks flush, so that’s good enough for me!




Until really soon,




31 thoughts on “VINTAGE DOOR: Decorative, Functional, & Illuminating

  1. You are so talented. You need a shop with a place to create and a place to have a showroom. that’s what you need.

  2. Hi! Just wanted to let you know I stumbled on your blog from a comment you left at “Not Just a Housewife” and have pinned your vintage door! It’s beautiful! I have several vintage doors and you have really inspired me beyond the standard making shelving thing 🙂 Great new little blog here! I’m in the process of creating one myself and will be back to yours for sure! Have a great weekend!

    • Hi Jo!
      Wow! Thank you so much for your feedback. I am so glad you enjoy the blog and it’s amazing to hear that you were inspired. I truly appreciate you taking the time to comment and I look forward to seeing your blog when you launch, let me know all about it 🙂

      • Found your project resently and loved it so much,got online and ordered a barn light , like yours. Attached it to an old door.Now going to add shelves.
        Thanks for the idea

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  4. Hi. I love your door project. I also have a couple of doors like yours with the glass out on top that I have been wondering how to fill in top section. Now I know! I also have a full paneled door about the same green as the back of yours, am a green girl, so will use my green side. Great score on your sconce from Lowes. Just love the whole things. Thanks so much for sharing and inspiring me.

    • Hi Phyllis!

      Thank you do much for sharing. Im so glad this inspired you, that being the point of my blog. It makes me feel great when I actually hear that someone got something out of it. When you finish your project feel free to share pictures on bulb’s Facebook page. Thanks again and happy DIY-ing!

    • Hi! I ultimately plan on getting a bracket to safely hang it on the wall. But what you see is the door just leaning. I still have it leaning slightly and it works just fine. This door is very bottom heavy, so I don’t know if that’s the reason, but even if you just have something at the bottom to stop it from sliding out, it should work. Either way it should be fine. I hope this was helpful. Thank you!!

  5. So, how do you stand this door up? Do you just lean it against the wall? At my house it would get bumped and all the things on the shelves would get knocked off. So I was just wondering if you did something at the bottom to make it stable.
    Great idea.

  6. This is delightful! I found an old white shabby door at this antique shop and my mind has been surging with ideas! I also made a pinboard for all these said ideas. Unfortunately a lot of them did not instruct how to do it. I was so happy to find this and your blog. Not only do you show step by step how-to, but it is simple enough that it does not overwhelm me. (This is my first real DIY project, so it’s a little intimidating.) Thank you so much for giving me a place to start! 🙂

    • I can’t tell you how happy I am to hear all that! Sometimes I feel like I ramble in these posts, so I’m glad you found the step by step approach useful. You are so sweet and I’m so excited that you are starting your first project. Never be intimated. What’s the worst that could happen? Mistakes are good too because there’s always a lesson and sometimes you stumble upon a new idea. Good luck to you and don’t hesitate to ask any questions if you need help!

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  8. Omg I love this…. I have an old door & this is just what I want to do to it. Thanks for the great idea !

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