Entry door buying guide: The different styles of front doors
Take your home’s style up a notch with the perfect front door. We’ll walk you through the most popular front door styles and selections that will bring each style to life.
Modern front doors
Modern is a broad term, but there are some characteristics that carry across its various iterations — such as an emphasis on clean lines and large expanses of glass. Here are some details to keep in mind if you want a more modern look.
- Panel style: Single panel doors that are taller, rather than wider, in proportion are most common. Slab-style panels, or those without smaller inset panels and other details, are a great choice.
- Hardware: Look for minimalist hardware with black or metallic finishes, or a finish that matches the color of the door. You’ll find options like these among the FSB® Hardware.
- Glass: This is a key feature of modern style. Select an all-glass door with a thin frame, or a door that integrates glass panels prominently — like the example below. You could also add more glass with sidelights (windows beside a door) or a transom (a window above a door).
- Grilles: Grilles are less common in modern homes but not unheard of. Consider the semi-customizable specified equal light pattern arranged horizontally as a nod to mid-century style.
- Color: A brightly colored front door can really pop against the understated elegance of a modern home. If you want something a little more subtle, think about choosing a natural wood front door. And if you’re going all in on glass, a black frame can look sleek.
Double front doors
Looking to make a grand entrance? Double front doors are the way to go, and they can suit most any style of home. Base your selections on characteristics of a modern, farmhouse, craftsman, or traditional front door using the tips in this article.
Farmhouse front doors
Farmhouse style has exploded and evolved in the past couple of decades — there’s the classic Midwestern farmhouse, but there’s also the modern farmhouse with Scandinavian minimalist characteristics, and the warmer old-world or European farmhouse.
No matter which direction you want to go, here are a few selection ideas to get you started:
- Panel style: Single doors with some glass and some detailing in the woodwork, like smaller inset panels below the glass, are typical on a farmhouse.
- Hardware: Look for more traditional hardware featuring details like curves and ridges — check out Encino® or Newbury® hardware — or tweak the look to suit a modern farmhouse by selecting hardware with right angles and flat surfaces — find options like these among the FSB® hardware.
- Glass: A door panel with glass on the top half is classic. Additionally, a farmhouse might have sidelights (windows next to a door) or a transom (a window above the door).
- Grilles: Grilles may be included if you’re going for a more old-world or Midwestern-style farmhouse look. They can be skipped if you’re going for a modern farmhouse look.
- Color: Classically, farmhouse front doors are painted in rich earthtones that range from neutral shades of white and canvas to forest green and cocoa bean. But black’s not off the table, especially if you’re creating a more modern farmhouse look.
A fun play on the farmhouse door, and a perfect match for one that’s old-world inspired, is the Dutch door. Historically, these split doors originated on farms where they helped keep children inside and animals outside while still allowing fresh air into the home. Dutch doors are definitely on the rise, and we can make them custom to suit your style. Look to the selections above if you need inspiration.
Craftsman front doors
Craftsman-style homes emphasize hand-crafted features — prominent wood trim, stained glass, and more. To bring a craftsman front door to life, consider the following details:
- Panel style: Single panel doors that are wider, rather than taller, and include detailing — like smaller inset panels carved into the door — suit a craftsman style. A front door might be flanked symmetrically by sidelights or windows on either side.
- Hardware: Look for functional hardware that’s simple and understated in finishes like black, distressed bronze, or distressed nickel.
- Glass: Windows in the upper third of the door are typical. Sometimes these windows feature art glass — learn more about our art glass options.
- Grilles: Vertical grille bars or a diamond grille pattern are two good options for a craftsman front door.
- Color: Doors are usually stained wood, rather than painted. Stains are often rich, warm browns like mocha or espresso.
Traditional front doors
Traditional style homes are timeless. A variety of architectural styles could be considered traditional, but no matter the exact type you have, the pointers below will help you get started creating the right front door look.
- Panel style: Either a single or double-panel entry door could be suitable. No matter which one you choose, look for panels that have detailing included in their design. A more handmade look will harken back to an earlier time and more traditional style.
- Hardware: Look for hardware that stands out with decorative flourishes like ridges and curves, bright finishes like brass, or stately dark finishes like distressed bronze.
- Glass: A transom above the front door can help further a traditional look since transoms are often found on historic homes (they were placed above front doors to let in fresh air prior to air conditioning).
- Grilles: These are generally considered a more traditional feature and can be integrated into a door’s glass panel, a transom, sidelights, or all three.
- Color: To find the right paint color or wood stain for your traditional home, let history be your guide. Certain colors are tied to specific architectural styles and specific regions. Find out more by looking up your home’s architectural style in our Home Style Library
Did you know? Front doors can be one color on the exterior and a different color on the interior so it’s easy to make sure your door coordinates with its surroundings on both sides.
Arched front doors
An arched front door is classic on traditional home styles like Mission Revivals, Spanish Colonial Revivals, European farmhouses, and more. Find great options among our Springline™ panel styles.
Ready for more front door inspiration? Maybe try out a door design? Either way, we’ve got you covered!