Our 2023 to-do list includes lots of small cosmetic updates. Installing a door for the guest room was the No. 1 on our list. This guest room sits at the northeast corner of the main floor. It used to be our bedroom, before we created a master suite in the basement.
After moving our bedroom downstairs, we converted this room to a home office for me. It also functions as a guest bedroom with the help of a hidden murphy bed.
We took down the bedroom door during this renovation, then taped and mudded the old doorway to give it a passthrough-like appearance. The plan was to install the future bedroom door onto the openings between the hallway and the living room. So when guests stay over, they could access the bathroom without opening their door to the living room.
The bedroom door before:
The bedroom doorway after the office renovation:
But before we got to installing the bedroom door, we worked on the main floor bathroom and the nearby kitchen. Now all the spaces around this small hallway have finished, it is finally time to close off the guest suite.
The width of the opening between the living room and the hallway space is only 36″, so we decided to install a 32″ wide prehung door for this opening. Prehung doors come with door jambs hinges, making the installation very straightforward. As of the door choices, we decided to get a pre-primed 5-panel door that matches the modern look of the nearby bathroom pocket door. After bringing it home, I painted it the same white color to match all the trims on the first level
Below is a picture of the ceiling at this opening. You can see how the two walls overlap a few inches, which is perfect to fit the door jambs. The ceiling smoke/CO2 detector had to be relocated.
Framing and installation:
To frame the doorway, we need to know what the framing behind the walls look like. Slav marked where the door jambs should go, then cut off the baseboards and drywall to expose the framing.
Then Slav cut the drywall off the other side of the opening. We have worked with this section of the wall before – The wall on the opposite side of the kitchen used to be a door to the second bedroom on the main floor. Shortly after moving in, we converted the bedroom to an office for Slav and closed this doorway in the process.
The hallway, 2017
2018, before the office renovation:
2018, After Slav’s office renovation:
Slav removed the baseboards and drywall at this corner where the door jamb should go. It felt funny to see the framing we have put in five year ago.
The door jamb for a prehung door is only 33″ 9/16, so we need to narrow the opening a bit. We installed a 2″ x 4″ on each side to support the door jamb.
With the correct opening size, Slav installed the door jambs.
Then he attached the door itself. Once again, the guest “room” became a room!
Despite the opening on top of the door, we could already feel a sense of privacy in the guest bedroom. Interestingly, we found ourselves closing the new door while using bathroom too, even though the bathroom has its own door.
Here is how the doorway looked like from the living room. We chose a left-handed door so we can keep the door open easily.
We installed the mirror again on the wall facing the bathroom door. so our guests can use it to get ready before heading out to the common space.
Closing the doorway with drywall:
To completely enclose the doorway, we put drywall over the opening above the door. Slav added some 2″ x 4″ above the door header to give the drywall panel some support , then attached drywall which we saved from the kitchen renovation:
Then he used wood trims to cover the door jamb.
And installed hardware and a door stopper:
We managed to get everything installed just in time for a friend’s visit. I think he and his two dogs enjoyed the new private “suite”. 🙂
During the last a couple weeks, Slav mud and taped the new drywall, and I painted the drywall the same color as rest of the main floor.
You might notice some yellow patches on the door frame – these are wood fillers I patched the nail hole with. I have not painted the trims yet. Because there will be more trim work ahead of us!
Future finishing work: door trims and baseboard
During the finishing work, we noticed that we now have three different trim style around this small hallway – the simple flush trim around the new door, the most decorative trim around the office door way, and the old trim around the linen closet door:
The flush trim next to the closet trim does not bother me much. But the difference between the office doorway trim and the new door trim is too obvious to let go. We will add the same profile of trims around the new door so the two doorway looks symmetrical. Then we will caulk and paint everything all together. For now, let us celebrate the
completed 95% done guest suite doorway!
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