How to Strip . . . Paint Off a Door

Have you ever had to strip… paint off a door? (You must leave a dramatic pause after strip for the full effect! LOL. If you haven’t had to strip…paint off a door, consider yourself lucky.
If you need to strip… paint, I have some tips and a tutorial for you!
Here’s the back story: My home’s doors have been purple for over 7 years. I was over the dark and wanted some vibrancy. It was supposed to be a simple project. Just paint the front doors a beautiful green (Benjamin Moore Perennial Green.) I had tested the color on my custom house mailbox. That was TWO YEARS ago! (Life’s been a little busy, okay. Forgive me, I’ve been wrapped up in a major kitchen renovation.) All I had to do was get the paint mixed and get painting. Instead, I was caught in the middle of the DIY project from HELL!
I had five doors to paint (front two doors, one side door and two wooden storm doors.) But, this DIY project was doomed from the start.
I finally got around to sanding and priming the front door. I was elated as I finally began to brush the paint onto the doors. Ahhhh. Beautiful green. I finished the first coat on the front doors. Then proceeded to the side door. When I went back to give the front doors a second coat…a problem exposed itself. Nooooooo!
The paint was NOT sticking properly. A light scratch revealed the purple paint beneath. Ugh! What?! Nooooooooooo.
My only course of action was to strip… the paint off down to the bare wood and start over. I was crushed, I wanted to cry. Instead, I just got to work stripping.
You can find lots of tips on the blog.
After the door has dried, assess your door for cracks or gouges. Now is the time to patch any imperfections.
Faster than you could say strip…paint off a door, the moment was gone and I had popped open the can of primer and started over again. (So depressing.)
I wish I could have left the doors wood, but they aren’t in great shape and our side door was already painted a pretty vibrant green at this point.
Yup, it only took two years and three days of stripping, but I finally have beautiful and colorful doors. The green is so pretty with my newly freshened up front flower beds. (More on that process another day.)
Stop by the blog for loads of tips on stripping . . . paint off a door along plus a video tutorial.

Brittany aka Pretty Handy Girl
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!

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2 of 121 comments
  • Marion Nesbitt Marion Nesbitt on Jun 15, 2014
    I really liked the purple. It went so well with the colours in your stoop/landing. Guess you just wanted a change. It does look vibrant.

    The green is WAY better than the purple!!!!! I have 2 75-year old entry doors that I'm hoping to strip back to natural. I have found it easier to remove the doors to 'strip' long as you can get the whole project done in one day. Easier on the knees and back.