Those of you who follow me on Instagram probably saw a peek of the barn doors for the passthrough on Saturday. Yes, they’re finally done and I’m sharing a reveal & how-to today! When we first started thinking about the pass through project we talked about several door options. I even pinned a few on Pinterest. Initially I wanted sliding doors that went into the wall, but it was just not feasible for us. So we decided on the next best thing: barn doors. I was in love with Dana’s door from their last house, especially the hardware, but we couldn’t buy that here and I thought it was something we could DIY for much less. So we started googling around for pics (check out some options here and here) and eventually found a way to do this. I’d love to give a super-detailed tutorial but the truth is each door/setup is different and probably requires different sizes of screws, nuts, tracks, etc. However, for someone who’s used to DIY it’s not difficult at all to figure it out, so here’s what we did.
It’s called a flat track system and basically what you need is the following:
- The flat track: it’s a long, flat piece of metal. Ours was about 2-3cm (one inch) high and 4mm (1/8 inch) thick. The length should span 2x the area you’re trying to cover, plus a bit of overhang on each side. In reality, since we couldn’t find a piece so long, we used two of them, as you can see in the pic below. You’ll need to drill holes in the flat track, one on each side. That’s where you’ll attach it to the wall. Since we had two tracks we drilled four holes.
- Four (two per door) pulleys, that will slide on top of the flat track. The “valley” in the pulley should be a bit wider than the flat track of course. Our pulleys are about an inch and a half in diameter.
- Made of the same material as the flat track, eight (four per door) smaller pieces that will join the pulleys with the doors. You’ll need to drill two holes in them as well, one to screw onto the door, the other one for the pulley.
- Four (two per door) metal cylinders with a hole in the middle for the screw that are meant to separate the track from the wall. Ours are about 1 inch in length to account for the pass through frame but could’ve been a bit shorter.
- Screws, nuts, etc. to assemble everything.
- Door(s); we built ours to measure and stained them.
As you can see, all the materials are stuff you can find at a hardware/home improvement store. Once we had everything we started assembling it. You pre-drill holes into your door(s); two on each door. Then, on each hole, you’ll use two of the smaller pieces of metal and a pulley; using nuts to join everything together. You’ll need enough space between the pulley and the top of the door for the flat track to slide in, of course. Once you have each door with two pulleys assembled, slide in the track in place, take a (very) long screw and the metal cylinders, and you’re ready to hang the doors. Drill holes into the wall where you want the doors to go and screw them in. Depending on what your walls are made of you might need different screws or make sure you’re attaching them to studs, etc.
But because all of this might not make sense at all, here are the close up pics of the setup. We thought the photos of other barn doors out there did a great job of being self-explanatory, so I hope these help you out, too:
And now, for the actual “after” shots…
And the view from the kitchen when closed:
We’d love to modge-podge a poster to the back of the doors so we have a prettier view from the kitchen when closed. Maybe a map? But that’s for another day… in short, we love the doors. Even if you don’t have a pass through to close up, they look good only for decor purposes. Or to cover up a TV that you don’t use very often. In fact, we love them so much that we’re going to switch our current kitchen door for something very similar. We have a smallish galley kitchen that would greatly benefit from a sliding door so now that we’ve seen the system works we’re taking the plunge and making another door for the kitchen as well.
Now, we still have to take care of some details – besides adding some art to the doors on the kitchen side like I mentioned, I’d love to paint the screws black to match the hardware, we’re researching options so the doors don’t swing outwards, and we’re also looking for handles – but in the meantime, I’m calling this project DONE. We couldn’t be happier with it.