The great thing about redecorating is to learn as you go, often change the original plans and come up with even better ones. This is exactly what happened in our open plan kitchen-living area.
After we removed the wall between the kitchen and living room, we wanted to create a new door opening to the kitchen, by the front door. But this would give us two doors to the kitchen on the same wall less than 3 meters apart. That sounds silly! Why would you have two small doors when you can have one big one?
Here came the idea of inserting a large internal bi-fold door so we closed the existing door and created a doorway 1500 mm wide. Result? They are perfect, look great and do exactly what we wanted. You can keep them open, half open or closed. We have them open most of the time and close them occasionally when cooking smelly food, keeping warm with an open fire downstairs or having guests staying on the sofa. They are a great first impression when you walk into the house as well as giving light in the hallway.
Difficulty: HARD (due to the labour of work required)
- Doors (£725)
- Door latches / hinges (£20)
- Handle (£10)
- Varnish (£7)
- Frog tape (£5)
- Brush (£3)
Estimated cost: £770 (doesn’t include labour: builder, plasterer and carpenter)
To do list:
- Find the right bi-fold door for your space and needs.
- Find a builder to open the space. Make sure they follow building requirements for fitting the door. Always check with a qualified builder for supporting walls before removing them and do not carry the work yourself unless you know what you are doing. Supporting walls need steel inserting to the structure and this can be costly.
- Find a carpenter to help to fit your door and possibly handle too.
- If your new bi-fold door arrived unfinished, you will need to paint/varnish them to protect them and get the desired colour finish. Use frog tape for glass rather than masking tape. Although it is more expensive it will save you lots of time peeling old tape from glass.
Tip: You can save money by combining work for your builder or carpenter. They often charge you a daily rate and can fit several other projects in for an agreed price. Make a list of all the work that is needed and discuss timescales / possibilities.