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Saturday, August 9, 2014

Take an ordinary door

And transform it 

into something not so ordinary.

And, by the way, the faux stone walls are my secret recipe of dry wall compound and sand.  Each block hand painted with acrylic paints.  

But first, let me tell you.  Our doors,  for our new house,  are very old doors.  In fact they are more than 100 years old.  

Deseret News

But they are not ordinary.  They were salvaged from the famous and very elegant Hotel Utah,  the Grande Dame of Hotels in the Intermountain West. 

Now not a Hotel anymore but the Joseph Smith Memorial Building.
I remember dining and dancing many beautiful evenings at the rooftop of this venerable hotel.  

But no more.  

The doors were painted white on one side and left natural on the other side, just as you see here, in our bathroom. 

They were the doors which opened the many doors to individual rooms of the hotel.  Some of the doors still had room numbers attached.  

I left the natural wood as is but painted the doors on the white side.  

 I painted right on the top of the old white paint.

What do you think? 

Plain white, natural wood or faux marble?  

Thank you for stopping by.  Have a great week ahead. 



  1. That is an amazing result with the door, congratulation.


    1. Thank you Filip. The wonderful part about paint is that you can always paint something else on top. Thank you for stopping by.

  2. Dear Gina - what a prodigious talent you are with so many diverse skills at your finger tips - I suspect that all of the different door surfaces suit the particular locations that you have them in, but I certainly admire the faux marble you have done.

    1. Dear Rosemary, You give me too much credit. Painting faux marble is very easy. All you have to do is observe a few rules. You may have noticed that I sometimes include faux marble in the background of my tiles and platters.
      I have painted the last tile of my large project. I look forward to spending a little more time with my blogging friends. However, rumor has it that more tiles will be needed for a similar project. Thank you for your visit. It is so appreciated. ox, Gina

  3. Gina, it's grand that the doors now in your home brought along an interesting provenance. I greatly admire each way that you have adopted differing techniques and restoration as you installed the doors. They each look wonderful...from both sides!

    Congratulations to you on completing the large commision. I also like the sound of that rumor. Hoping that you will have a little time to rest your eyes and your painting hand for a while, and enjoy a bit of late summertime.


    1. Dear Fraances, Often the old where built so much better than the new that it is a shame to toss them out. The old doors give our new house much needed character.

      I am now catching up with a few smaller orders but there is always time to sit back and admire Summer. But our Summer days are going by way too fast. It is so perfect right now I want it to slow down.

  4. What a great find! Love the wood and the fact that they are both -- wood and paint (as is our front door) but also liked what you did to that one! What a piece of history in your house!

    1. Hello Martha, You are the lucky one to have found just the right door for your house. Thank you for your visit and thank you also for leaving a comment.

  5. Dear Gina,

    I hope that I am not too late to comment on your handsome doors. I love the fact that you have rescued and reused doors with a history (as I have done at my house), and added your own historic look to them. I really like your idea of creating a block wall with drywall compound and sand (I'm taking notes!), and I also admire your proficiency in creating the illusion of marble. Brava!

    1. Dear Mark, What I like about my "block wall" is that you can start on the wall and continue the next day to finish it. It never shows any seams. The dry wall and sand mixture is applied with a trowel in sort of a criss cross motion. While still pliable you use a wet two by four, on edge, to score the grout lines. Let dry and paint each large block with a large kitchen sponge. The secret is to paint the sponge with different colors and then blot onto "stone" blocks. Move back and forth between different blocks until all paint is used up. Repeat.
      The sand is very important. It prevents the dry wall compound from cracking. A box of compound required about 10 large cups of sand. Mix thoroughly and apply to wall. Will send more detailed instructions when needed. For inside walls only.