If you’re a fan of traditional European architecture or even an art lover, you’re no doubt familiar with the charming Dutch door or stable door. It’s simply a door that is split in half so that the top portion and bottom portion can be opened and closed separately. The bottom door is normally left shut, to keep farm animals out and little exploring children in. While the bottom portion is closed, the top portion can be left open to let in light and fresh air. And though few of us these days have to worry about keeping the cows out, Dutch doors evoke the charm of a country cottage and a time gone by.
Aside from the Dutch door in the photo above, there are several elements in this space that together create the country chic feel of this backdoor and mudroom. A striped skirt hides the laundry machines, oil rubbed bronze metal finishes add a vintage feel, and beaded board paneling lends texture to the walls. While the traditional cottage feel of a Dutch door might work for many older homes, this design can look at home in a more modern space as well.
We found quite a few ways to make a Dutch door part of just about any style of decor.
While this stylish homeowner incorporates a Dutch door into her space, she does it with a modern flair by adding a vibrant green color! With a more modern frame than you find in Dutch doors of long ago and simpler hardware, it feels whimsical and perfectly suited to this California home.
Many entryways use drama to create a lasting first impression– think two-story foyers and over-scale chandeliers. In the entryway above, designer Miles Redd takes an even more modern approach to the Dutch door by going two-tone! Redd’s use of color is quite unexpected, not only on the door but in the hallway itself, and the yellow-and-navy door definitely brings that entryway drama.
While most Dutch doors are seen in entryways, mudrooms, or off the kitchen, there are times when this perfectly placed design element can completely change the look and feel of a room. The children’s playroom in the photo above proves that, while unconventional, a Dutch door can invite the outdoors into your space and create a laid back vibe that celebrates some of Mother Nature’s best-loved qualities.
See more inspiration and ideas in our Places series here on the Apron blog.