DIY Sliding Door Tutorial + A Giveaway

DIY Sliding Door Tutorial + A Giveaway

Hey Friends!  Today we have a really great giveaway planned!  More details on how you can enter later, but for now let’s talk about what you can win!

You saw this picture on Wednesday when I posted about the industrial sliding door that I snagged for our home. . .


Well. . . . I have a secret.


I didn’t find that door. . .  I made that door!!!! And you can too!

The whole look was inspired by the amazing door on the set of “New Girl.”  Are there any “New Girl” fans out there?  🙂


I’ve loved that door from the first time I saw it but figured fawning over it was a lost cause because it seems like a one-of-a-kind piece.  But then I had an idea!

You are not going to believe how I made my version. . . .Foam insulation!!!. . . and drywall J-channel make up the frame of the door.


J-channel is a thin metal made to go on the corners of drywall.  And it just so happens that 1/2 inch foam insulation fits perfectly inside the channel!  Woo hoo!

I decided I wanted my door to be 4ft wide by 8ft tall which means I didn’t have to cut the foam down, but it is easily cut with an exacto knife if a different size door is desired.

I wanted the frame of the door to be made out of real metal but I didn’t want the piece to be super heavy, so the J-channel was a perfect option.  I simply measured and cut the metal with tin snips and/or heavy duty scissors.  I mitered the edges to make it look a little more finished.  By using a square (which oddly enough is in the shape of a triangle), I was able to cut even 45 degree angles on each of the edges.


Once the frame pieces were cut, it was time to slide the foam into the channel.  This is a bit of chore because it is such a tight fit but with a little persistence the foam was finally in place.

PS- don’t forget to remove the plastic covering from the foam on both sides.


Next I wanted to create a paneled look to add some dimension to the piece.  To do this, I first used a level and pencil to make a slight indentation in the foam.  Then I used a hot knife to create a deeper and more more defined cut.  Of course I made sure not to go too deep and cut through the door.

IMG_0917 2IMG_0920

Finally it was time for the super fun part!!!! Spectrum Paint has an amazing line of metallic paints.  These aren’t just paints that appear metallic, they actually have metal particles in the paint!  This means that when the paint comes into contact with the patina solution, a chemical reaction occurs and you have instant aged metal!!!


In order to save my metallic paint, I applied 2 coats of flat latex paint in a similar color to the door.  The latex paint covered the pink well, and allowed me to use less of the metallic paint. So, after two coats of the latex, I put on two coats of the metallic bronze paint.


While the second coat of bronze paint was still somewhat wet, I applied the patina solution.  I used both the green and blue patina on the door and focused the aging around the outside of the “panels.”


Because I was so enthralled with the process taking place, I may have gone a little overboard with the patina.  Luckily, that wasn’t a problem.  Here’s another really cool thing Spectrum can do- they can make any paint into a spray paint!  All you need is 3 ounces of paint and Spectrum can put it into a spray can for a flawless finish!


I was especially happy that Spectrum offered this service when I felt like I had gone a little too far on the aging and wanted to get some of the original bronze shimmer back.  I could have tried to brush it on, but the fine mist of a spray allows for more control and keeps you from messing up your finish with brush strokes.  Yay!

Finally, it was time to hang the door.  As some of you know, the hardware for hanging a sliding door can be super expensive.  However, when your door is made from a lightweight foam and metal frame, you can simply use a sliding closet door system that will run you about $15!


I used “L” brackets to secure mine to the wall.


I plan on adding a nicer piece of metal or wood to the front of my hardware soon, I just haven’t got around to it yet. 🙂


So, that is my sliding door tutorial! In case you are wondering, the piece is holding up really well.  Spectrum paint liked this idea so much, they wanted to give you guys a chance to experience their awesome paint products for yourself!  Soooooo, they are offering up 5 free sets of their Metallic Effects Paint and Patina!  (any color you would like!)  You probably have a Spectrum Paint close to you, but if you don’t we will ship the paint to you!

Here’s how you can enter!!!


PIN IT!!! We will double your chances to win when you pin one of our finished door photos from this post and label it with both of these hashtags- #karapaslaydesigns and #Spectrum Paint
– You can like our Facebook Page and comment to let us know you liked it.
– And you can share this post on your own Facebook page (simply go to our Facebook page and click the share button!

Yay!  I’m so excited to see what you guys do with this super fun paint!  We will choose and announce the winners right here next Thursday- November 1st!

PS- Sorry for the little fib earlier this week.  I just wanted to make sure the door really did pass as a full on industrial metal piece! 🙂

This article has 23 comments

  1. Traci G.

    How’s the sound proofing on this? I’m looking at doing this type of door for my bathroom also and while we’re have a smaller space with not as much height, I think this fits our style pretty well. Just curious if you think you hear anything more than you want to with this, although it’s probably more insulated than any hollow core door out there!

  2. Stacie

    Wow! What a great idea. You totally had me fooled. I thought it actually was an aged metal door. 🙂

  3. Mary Nickels

    Drrrrrrweeeeeaaaammmm door! thank you so much for sharing such a wonderful project! It has so many useful applications! I would love to know an alternative to the hot knife! Never heard of one and don’t know what else they could be used for. Thanks for sharing!

  4. Nadia

    Merci beaucoup. On vous lis au Québec aussi 🙂

    Being right in the process of building a new house, I was looking for a way to separate a room and workshop area in my new basement. I now have a solution. I pined it as well.

    Thanks so much !

  5. Meg

    Liked your facebook page!

    I’ve been wanting to do a sliding door to the bedroom in my loft since I bought it but the hardware is so expensive! Thanks for the idea for a more affordable alternative!

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