Super Cheap Closet Doors - DIY

8 Materials
3 Hours
When we first moved into our cute little farmhouse all three rooms had no closet doors. I'm one of those girls that likes to keep my home really really clean. But in the occasion that I need to get some quick cleaning done, I toss my "I-don't-know-what-to-do-with-you-pile" into the closet. We didn't have closet doors, so you can see how this was a NEED TO DO project. I love the look of painted white paneling and I wanted to incorporate something a bit more sleek into our bedrooms. If you don't know what we do for a living, head on over here to have a quick read. Our home is very rustic.
After reading a tutorial on applying painted paneling to your kitchen for backsplash (which we didn't do ). The light bulbs went off in my head. I mean, I got super excited because in my head, it seemed so easy. Let me lay one thing out right now, some of my ideas are great and some, not so much. Glen is my go getter. I can build things on my own.. but down the road he ends up usually fixing my projects or completely re-doing them. So you can see how I try to sweet talk my way into just "letting" him do the project. He's the best husband ever. I just had to point that out really quick.

Okay, so back to my light bulbs going off in my head. We needed to make four closet doors and I really didn't want to spend more than 100.00.... I know, call me Mrs. Cheap over here! So I had an idea to have the laminate paneling as the door and then add the 14 frame & slashes to it. Paint it all in your choice of color ( I decided on white ) and you have your gorgeous closet doors that literally take under 30 minutes to build and a few hours to paint!

So stick with me in this easy DIY to find out exactly what we used, how we used it and the exact cost per door. I promise, you wont be sad you stayed.
Are you ready to build the fastest & prettiest closet doors? We took lots of photos for this Easy DIY because we want you all to have the joy of owning your own!
Alright, so you have your laminated decorative panel. I know, it's pretty awesome looking. Don't worry though - paint makes everything beautiful! You also have your four 14's. We cut all of our own wood/pieces as we have the tools. But you can also get the hardware store to do the cuts for you. I can't give you dimensions though as each closet door is different. But here are the dimensions of our doorways: 76 3/4 x 29

When measuring your doorways, be SURE to measure the top and bottom of the doorway. If you're in a very old home, sometimes the home has slanted, uneven or not square doorways. It's a pain to work with, but you don't want to put all this hard work in and not have your door fit. We live in an old 1950's home, so most of our doorways are no longer square and we had to sand parts of our door down to fit, hence why one of our doors has a gap. I swear, this house is sinking!
So lets head on back down to the shop & start the first step: screwing the frame together.

Don't mind Glen, he isn't the best photographer - but he sure can build! Here he's just measuring the width between the side panels. Make sure you have a exact dimensions, because you want this to perfectly fit on top of your panel board once it's all screwed together.
Now that your cuts are made for the frame, go ahead and make your pocket holes & screw together. We put two screws per connection. This is the back side of our frame so once it's completed it will get flipped over on the decorative panel board.
Next step you want to be sure to check that your frame is square. We continually do this throughout all our projects. It's never fun to put time and energy into a piece and have it not square. Remember the cuts you made for the bottom and top? Make one more for the middle. Measure the width from the bottom board to the top and put it right in the middle. Make your pocket holes & screw into place.
Now we can make our slashes! Measure the distance from point to point. Glen has a little trick he likes to do for angle cuts like this. It makes it super easy

Glen takes his square but you can use any straight edged object and draw on the cuts. This is a very very beginner hack & it doesn't work on most angles, but on these doors it works great.

Once you've drawn on all your exact cuts, go cut them, pocket hole them and screw! Your frame is complete!
Now make sure you have your frame ( screw holes facing you ) and take your piece of laminate and put it panels facing down on your frame.

See picture - add silicon to the back of your frame and then screw the laminated piece to the frame.

The back of the paneling is really ugly, so you want to make sure you paint the front & back of the door.

Prior to screwing the frame on, put your wood glue/silicon all over the frame & attach. Screw the paneling onto the frame and you're done! Now you have a door that you can hang onto your existing closet door way. Pick your choice of paint and roll/brush it on. This is the most time consuming part of the project.
Thanks for coming back to our blog to read! I would love to hear your thoughts on this project. Is there anything we can change? Did you love it? Did you hate it?

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Jessica-Sara Morris
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Frequently asked questions
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3 of 34 questions
  • Catherine Catherine on Mar 04, 2019

    I have designed the same doors for my closets but plan to double them (back to back) so they'll be a normal thickness. Are they very heavy?

  • Wanda Wanda on Oct 29, 2019

    I’m not clear - did you attach these to the old doors, or just hang the thin door that you made? They do look nice!

  • Lisette Lisette on Jul 16, 2020

    Once it’s all put together, what is the thickness of the door? We are thinking of building these as sliding doors for our closet but need to know if they will fit in the tracking as it’s usually 1 inch thick

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2 of 187 comments
  • Jenny Jenny on Jul 19, 2020

    Thank you for posting this. I think they look great. Back in the 80s we had an extension and no money left over to rebuild the kitchen. I used old carcasses but made all the cabinet doors myself from tongue and groove wood made into panels then framed with soft wood. 18 of the little beggers. My husband, bless him, moaned about them until in 2003 we bought a new kitchen. They looked very similar to your doors and I was proud of my handywork. Shame he's not around any more so I could show him. Thanks anyway.

  • R R on Jul 19, 2020

    I’ve never commented before but feel compelled to....what a fabulous and cheap project. I shall definitely do this on my wardrobe doors.

    love the cutting top tip btw