$3 Front Door Update

3 Materials
1 Hour

We have a very old front door that needs to be replaced. But like many home owners, the desire to make upgrades and our budget doesn't always align. I also very much disliked that anyone at my door could easily peer inside.

I've tried a few things to make the door look better and obscure the view. Below I used cloverleaf aluminum sheet, spray painted it black and taped it to the inside the door. It was an improvement but kept falling off the door.

I thought a metal design in black would be great but probably pricey. Then it occurred to me a floor register might fit. I priced them and really didn't want to spend nearly $50 on 3 registers especially since I wasn't sure it would work. As luck would have it, I found three very abused registers for a dollar each at the Restore.

I figured out how to get the dusty, filthy backs off, then bent them back flat and cleaned them really well.

I spray painted the registers black and spent about 15 minutes figuring out how hang them in the little windows on the door. I didn't want to glue them so that I could easily take them off to clean the windows when needed.

I used nails at the top.

and used upholstery tacks on the bottom and spray painted them black to blend in.

Here's the end product from the outside.

I use a wreath to hide the door further.

Here is what it looks like from the inside.

I had the spray paint and upholstery tacks. Not including paint dry time, I spent an hour and $3 to update my front door.

For total privacy, I cut plastic shelf liner to the size of each window, cut a slit at the top, placed a clear Command hook above the window on the inside and hung the plastic from the hook. The plastic has some rigidity but flexible enough to push inside the window frame. I put them on at night and take them off in the morning.

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3 of 58 questions
  • Johanne Palange Johanne Palange on Feb 07, 2021

    Very simple and inspired. Is there any way you could have hung up the plastic privacy pieces without there being a part sticking out over the top? That sticking out part at the top kind of makes it look pokey which is unfortunate because the idea is really smart.

  • Elizabeth Elizabeth on Feb 08, 2021

    Could you have used those clear plastic mirror holders to hold the plastic? Or covered cardboard cutouts in fabric and used those? I liked your idea, it looks nice. Especially using the floor registers. That was a unique idea!

  • Georgia Hollinger Georgia Hollinger on Feb 08, 2021

    Why didn't you polyester the brass before putting on door. You wouldn't need protectors.

    Brass is commonly used to decorate doors, but it should have a polyuerethane coating.

    Probably wouldn't hurt the outside of your door any, as well.


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2 of 575 comments
  • Sylvia Laura Ranyak Sylvia Laura Ranyak on Feb 21, 2021

    Plastic shelf liner you Could’ve used privacy contact paper. All that work and use a plastic liner.

  • Dasheila Dasheila on Feb 23, 2021

    Did this with the vent covers. Wrote the dimensions down and carried it around until I was at our local Menards. Perfect. FYI: Found out the design I chose had an upside down/rightside up to it, so don't glue it in until you've eyeballed and noted any differences!