Wood Doors with White Trim?

I’m painting the trim in the front entryway. It’s the last spot in the house to get a coat of paint, so I’m finally getting on that.

Painting Trim in the Front Entryway

Would you paint either door there? I’m thinking of leaving them as-is, even though I’ve painted all of the other doors in the house. The front door is kind of cool, and the door between the entry and the living room (off its hinges and leaning against the wall while I paint) is the prettiest in the house. It’s not weird to leave them wood, right?

Painting Trim in the Front Entryway

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  • Kristin
    May 13, 2013 at 10:51 am

    Leave the wood – I think that’s a great look, and appropriate. We have a Second Empire home (Victorian Era) and we have painted woodwork (white) but the front door is stained wood. Many other houses in our neighborhood have white painted trim at large pocket door openings, but the doors themselves are stained and gorgeous.

  • Kathryn
    May 13, 2013 at 10:52 am

    I say leave it. Although my reasons have less to do with the wood/paint debate and more to do with the fact that toddler snot shows less on wood doors ;) I am all about the practical (I painted mine black to hide the dirt). And maybe I should go clean my doors now.

  • Margaret
    May 13, 2013 at 10:54 am

    We have white trim and a wood front door and it’s fine! I can’t bring myself to touch the front door, it’s so pretty!

  • Amanda T.
    May 13, 2013 at 10:55 am

    I think wood and white together is fabulous! Especially if it’s pretty wood :)

  • Dee in BC
    May 13, 2013 at 10:57 am

    I think a wood door & white trim sounds lovely, but it’s YOUR home. If you think it would look better painted- paint away!I’m amazed how many bloggers are worried that some nit-picking purist will give them a hard time for changing something they aren’t happy with. You live in the house. If someday a nit- picking, stained wood lover moves in they can strip & refinish it. :)

    • Making it Lovely
      May 13, 2013 at 11:01 am

      Oh, I’ve experienced plenty of that! I wrote a whole post about it when I decided to paint all of the trim, and people still email and leave comments about what a huge mistake it was.

      (I LOVE my white trim though. The house looks so much better with it.)

      • Erin @ Dwell & Tell
        May 13, 2013 at 5:14 pm

        I remember that one! :)

        Love the wood door. It will look great regardless… I would say, why not leave it wood for awhile, live with it, and slowly make that decision?

  • Megan @ Monroe Makeshift
    May 13, 2013 at 10:58 am

    I’d leave them wood and live with them for a while. You can always paint them later!

  • Eva
    May 13, 2013 at 11:02 am

    White + wood is a nice combination, and those wood doors are particularly pretty. An entry way is a good place for a wooden door too, simply because it takes abuse nicely and sometimes looks better with dents and scratches and whatnot! Plus you can always leave it for now, see how you like it, and paint it later if you don’t.

  • Court
    May 13, 2013 at 11:04 am

    I love the white paint in your home as well! But my vote is to leave that gorgeous door in its wood tone! The place still looks modern and updated with the white trim, but the wood door reminds you of the home’s history. :)

  • Amie
    May 13, 2013 at 11:11 am

    Think of it as no different than your wood floors. They word really well with your white trim, so why wouldn’t your wood door?

  • Amie
    May 13, 2013 at 11:12 am

    Think of it as no different than your wood floors. They work wonderfully with the white trim, so why wouldn’t your wood door?

  • Sara
    May 13, 2013 at 11:13 am

    I think if the doors are isolated and look nice, leave them as wood. The contrast can look really lovely if the wood is well-cared for. I just went through a similar issue myself only it was one door along a hallway with 4 other doors (bedrooms and closets). All the trim and doors are painted white, but one was in bad shape, so I decided to strip before repainting. Of course, underneath I find wood in better condition than all the others ever were (typical when it’s the last door I tackled!). It feels a little criminal to paint over it, but I think one varnished door next to 4 painted ones looks strange…. of course I’m still hemming and hawing about it. :)

  • Amie
    May 13, 2013 at 11:13 am

    Double posted comment! Whoops! I thought my page errored on the first one, my apologies.

  • cassie
    May 13, 2013 at 11:18 am

    i’d leave it, too! when doors are awesome and rustic as is…. YES! i have those thin hollow fake wood doors in my house that NEED PAINTING, but this one is perfection already!

  • Melissa | I Still Love You
    May 13, 2013 at 11:32 am

    Those wood doors are great as is! I agree with all the comments above – leave them wood. If you find you hate the wood look later, then paint. Pushing off on painting the doors a little later will make you happier about the decision you end up making in the long run.

    Your home is absolutely beautiful, too. The choices you’ve made to paint (and not paint) have all been great and very well thought out in my opinion!

  • Katrina
    May 13, 2013 at 11:51 am

    I think the wood is pretty – maybe giving them a nice sanding and a clear coat if needed, I think they add loads of character and look amazing paired with your white trim (which looks good)

  • Krysta
    May 13, 2013 at 12:26 pm

    I say leave it! The wood looks to be in really beautiful condition and I like the contrast. We have a mix of doors in our new (very old house), some painted, some the original wood, some a cheap wood trying to look like the original wood. We’ll continue to have a mix as the painted doors will remain painted and the cheap doors will get painted, but our front door is original and really pretty so it stays!

  • Hannah
    May 13, 2013 at 12:49 pm

    I agree… if you aren’t sure leave them as is and then paint them later if you get sick of it!

  • The Maiden Metallurgist
    May 13, 2013 at 1:07 pm

    I agonize over this. I have been going back and forth about painting the doors in our house for 2 years.

  • Audra
    May 13, 2013 at 1:24 pm

    I’ve left my back door in the original wood, and painted the trim white. (Mostly to update the old white trim) I love the contrast.

  • Lisa
    May 13, 2013 at 1:25 pm

    I vote paint it all! I am NOT a wood purist and admire your tenacity to paint the wood in your home. The originals owners of our house determined it would be fabulous to have light wood stained trim and doors everywhere…upstairs and down. I personally don’t have the money, desire or energy to paint it, though I’m certain it would improve the look of the house if I did!

  • annie
    May 13, 2013 at 1:38 pm

    I vote to leave the wood. I like the contrast with the trim — which looks great, by the way.

  • Karen
    May 13, 2013 at 1:49 pm

    Kay. Little off topic, but I can’t BELIEVE you have the same stupid staircase as I do. It makes getting anything upstairs almost impossible. Like a bed or a big dresser, or pretty much anything larger than a big dog. ~ k!

  • Anna
    May 13, 2013 at 2:19 pm

    Leave them as they are!
    I live in a victorian property, and previously lived in another victorian property. In the first we painted all the trim, but left the doors. I wanted to paint them but it was too much white for my other half. Then we moved and everything was already painted, but badly, and the doors had had hideous 1960’s full panels put over them, so we stripped them all off with the intention of repainting all the doors (I was so happy my husband was finally letting me do this somewhere!). But now that they’ve been stripped about 6 months, I’ve completely changed my mind, and we’ll be leaving them stripped with the white trim.
    Previous posters are right…leave them a while and see what you think. You might surprise yourself with what you decide!

  • Jessica
    May 13, 2013 at 2:31 pm

    I vote either staining it a darker wood tone (not too dark, a walnut maybe) or painting it a funky colour!!! white doors are passé! :)

  • kim @ DESIGN + LIFE + KIDS
    May 13, 2013 at 2:38 pm

    I vote WHITE + WHITE! I love the look and brightness of a white interior, letting the shapes, textures and accessories fill in the color void. I think it’ll be beautiful and feel really refreshing. 99% of our walls and doors are white and it’s been great with kids… there’s that super invention – The Magic Eraser!

  • jjzach
    May 13, 2013 at 2:41 pm

    Does anyone have any thoughts about the opposite dilemma. I have wood trim and would like to paint some of my interior doors. I haven’t had the confidence to do it, because I can find any good examples.

    • Fiona
      May 13, 2013 at 3:09 pm

      Check out Door Sixteen. All her interior doors are dark, which is not for everyone, but they look great. I’m sure Houzz or pinterest must have pictures, too. (All mine are Palladian Blue by Benjamin Moore and I get so many compliments.)

  • chris
    May 13, 2013 at 2:44 pm

    You can absolutely leave the doors unpainted. We live in an old house and had all the woodwork redone on the first floor. Eventually we decided to do just the doors upstairs since to do all the woodwork would be too expensive. They look great even though the trim around them is white.

    May 13, 2013 at 2:45 pm

    Another vote for leave it as is! Although I’m sure that WHATEVER you decide to do, it’ll be LOVELY. I definitely think that the front door is different and it’s nice to give it that character that sets it apart from the other doors.

    So how does it feel that you’re on the LAST spot in the house to get a coat of paint?!!! :)

  • Katie
    May 13, 2013 at 3:03 pm

    White trim + wood doors is a question I’ve been dealing with myself. And when I was watching The West Wing, The White House (in the show) had white trim and natural wood doors, so then I didn’t fret it any longer. ;)

  • Fiona
    May 13, 2013 at 3:08 pm

    I would paint it. That looks like oak (and I’m sorry!), but I’m not a fan, unless it’s white oak. Honestly, with the yellow paint, I think the oak undertones are too much yellow.

  • Lynn Cicchetti
    May 13, 2013 at 3:24 pm

    Leave the doors unpainted. My front door is from 1926 and all wood. All the other doors are original too, but painted white. I like having the difference in the same house.


  • Jules
    May 13, 2013 at 3:58 pm

    I don’t think it’s weird for the front door to be a different color/finish than the rest of the doors in the house. Whether it’s painted a different color or left wood while the others are painted I think it’s fine to be different. The only look I’ve never liked is half/half on the same door, where the panels are left wood and the rest is painted white, not a fan of that look personally.

  • Lori
    May 13, 2013 at 5:19 pm

    Leave the wood! We built a brand new house 4 years ago and on second level,and lower guest suite have ivory trim and solid wood doors. Nice contrast. That said, the closet doors are the same color as the trim, but the entry doors into the rooms are wood. I like the separation.

  • Lizzie
    May 13, 2013 at 5:42 pm

    I left the wood bare in my home and painted the trim – white and cream. Leave it! You’ll love the contrast!

    And, the toddler snot point is definitely a winner. Utility>style points sometimes.

  • Lauren
    May 13, 2013 at 6:06 pm

    In our old house we had the exact same thing… all the doors and trim in the house were white, but I also chose to leave the front door and the nearby coat closet doors their original, beautiful wood. They were very pretty doors, and they were in great shape, so I thought it was nice to let them stand out and be different. I never felt like it looked weird that they were different. The closet also had glass knobs on the doors, while the rest of the house had been changed out to oil-rubbed bronze because the glass ones were breaking.

  • eskimo*rose
    May 13, 2013 at 6:52 pm

    We had beautiful original wood doors in our old house, all were stripped by the previous owner and the trim was painted white throughout – it looked lovely, it would have been a shame to cover up the character, colour and lovely grain of the wood … I think this is true here too, the wood looks lovely … but I understand too if you wish to make them match the rest of the house … neither is right or wrong, go with your gut instinct

  • Elizabeth
    May 14, 2013 at 1:13 am

    Well it will look great no matter what you decide to do!

  • lisa
    May 14, 2013 at 8:29 am

    A door is a door. A frame is a frame. Just because they work as a unit does not mean that they need the same finish. You painted your trim because the wood was worn from years of use, and you are satisfied that the paint finish is more appealing than the wood. Would you feel the same about the doors? Would you be relieved every time you looked at them after an application of paint?
    My vote is no. The wood finish is beautifully rich. The white trim surrounding them is a nice, crisp boundary. There’s nothing weird about it at all.

  • tammylee
    May 14, 2013 at 10:57 am

    unrelated comment but I just tried to leave a comment on your post on Babble about the Flor rugs and it gave me this “You are posting comments too quickly. Slow down.” message. It was the only comment I had tried to leave so I don’t know exactly what that means.

  • Joolz
    May 14, 2013 at 11:04 am

    I’d leave them both as-is, but I think the white trim and stained wood doors would look better with a different paint color on the walls.

  • Danielle
    May 14, 2013 at 12:42 pm

    I really like how the contrast looks. I say leave it and see if it still works after awhile.

  • Jennifer
    May 14, 2013 at 12:47 pm

    I’ve been debating the same thing for my WHOLE house! We have wood trim throughout the house. I prefer white and want to paint everything, but it is *nice* wood. It’s not cheap or particularly ugly, just a preference. My husband especially doesn’t want me to paint the doors so I’ve been wondering how it would look to leave them wood. Looks pretty good in your pic. I like it! Maybe I can convince him now!

  • Kelly
    May 14, 2013 at 3:04 pm

    Usually I’m a sucker for a clean white door, but I’m coming around to wood doors. Maybe a slightly darker stain to make it pop more and freshen it up a little bit?

  • Abby J.
    May 15, 2013 at 11:54 am

    I say leave them! I think it will be a great contrast–and I love how pretty the wood is!
    Abby J.

  • Wood Doors, White Trim | Making it Lovely
    May 15, 2013 at 12:59 pm

    […] I left the doors unpainted in the front entryway. (Thanks for your feedback.) […]