This post contains affiliate links.
Do you want the good news or the bad news? Let’s start with the good, shall we? A few weeks ago I worked on a DIY chunky faux door trim hack to help beef up that boring old builder grade trim. I posted through this DIY over on Instagram and if you would like to view it, I have the story saved. I actually saw this hack posted on Our Faux Farmhouse InstaStories and thought it was a genius idea. Little did I know this quick DIY would turn into a week-long project. But before that faux pa, let’s take a look at how great this project turned out.
The basis of this whole project is really simple. If you have a door with standard trim, all you are doing is adding that chunky header to it. I basically used this process for our Chunky Window Trim update to create a similar header for the door frame. To test this aspect of adding the chunky top to the existing trim, I decided to use our pantry door in the kitchen before I did anything to the entry door beside our front window. It honestly needed something to spunk it up a bit, and this project totally gave it some life.
How to add a chunky header to existing trim.
To start this project, I had to get rid of the top piece of trim and make it a flat surface. Since our trim was installed with mitered cuts, I used an oscillating hand tool to chop off the little triangles at the top. Favorite tool alert, this thing was so easy to use and comes with multiple attachments.
Next, I made the header using two pieces of 1×2’s and a piece of 1×4. I cut the two 1×2 pieces one inch longer than my door + existing trim to give it a nice half inch overhang on each side. And the 1×4 was cut to the exact width of the door + trim. I nailed them together first before attaching it to the wall.
I used a simple acrylic caulk to fill in all of the seams. Then I primed and painted it to match the rest of the trim and door. I even started the process of updating our existing door handles to a darker oil rubbed bronze handle. So there you have it, this DIY faux door trim update is pretty simple. (But don’t stop there, see how I messed this whole project up below.)
The Faux Failure
Before we got to our really great looking finish, I hit a few stumbling blocks. Actually, I think I hit them all. A few were total what were you thinking moments. I guess it was all the high from the amazing window trim I had just completed. So I hit this project with a total arrogance that I got this. I grabbed a piece of 1×6 for my header which I also used on our windows and made my cuts. Then the regret sunk in.
Here’s the door with primer on the trim. Something just isn’t jiving here. I really wasn’t liking this look at all and a panic set over me of how to fix this. See, it’s not all glitter and unicorns here.
One thing I’ve really made myself do more of, which helps so much, is to sleep on it. If I have an issue instead of trying to remedy it immediately I take some time to process and really think through a solution. Chris was ready to just recut some regular trim and abandon the project, but I wasn’t quite there yet.
I realized that I made a major mistake in that the 1×6 needed to be the same width as the door + trim (duh Shea.) I also thought that this super skinny door was being overpowered by the thick header and that if I scaled it down a little, might reign the project back in. So I had Chris pick up a 1×4 to bring home and crossed my fingers.
It totally worked. Luckily, these two adjustments made a world of difference. The chunky header gives this a more custom feel but scaling back to a 1×4 didn’t overpower the smallness of the door itself. It really gives this area a fun farmhouse vibe don’t you think? If you want to see all the behind the scenes of this project, head over to my Instagram page and click on the Door Trim Hack Story.