Converting a doorway into an archway

You guys, I’m so pumped to share with you the completion of my arch project.  Our Philly rowhome is just a little over 1,000 sq ft.  With that said, I leaned into the small space mindset and designed it with a Scandinavian/hygge vibe.  Since our new suburban home is twice the size, I wanted it to showcase the grandeur of this large amount of space.  I’m not sure why, but this house immediately reminds me of tract homes in California.  So with this house, I’m gathering inspiration from my Californian roots.  One thing I’m doing is incorporating cool architectural details – like arches – into this home.  I think these details really help the house build its personality and character, which helps set it apart from the house next door.

Our master bedroom is really sectioned into two parts.  There is the main bedroom area that you see right when you walk in.  It’s spacious and lets in a lot of natural light.  But when you turn the corner to the left, you’re greeted by three doors that all swing towards the hallway.  There’s a standard door that leads into the walk-in closet, then bifold doors for a secondary closet, then a door that leads into the bathroom.

We knew immediately that this wasn’t going to work.  I could just imagine the two of us getting ready in the morning and slamming doors in each other’s faces all the time.  So the consensus was one or more doors have to go.

We knew that the bathroom door shouldn’t be the one to go, since it’s nice to have a little bit of privacy.  So we turn to the two closets.  Ian volunteered his closet since he finds it to be a chore anyway to have to open a door every morning to get dressed.

So first I took off the door.  Then I thought the trim looked weird without a door, so I took off the trim.  Then I realized that I could expand the doorway a little bit, so I took off the door frame.  Then a lightbulb went off in my head and I thought – arches.  Not going to lie, Ian thought I was a little insane.  But I promised him that I could make this look fantastic.  Now he says this is his favorite project to date.  It looks great and he did 0% of it.  Haha.

What made this project so simple is this product I found called The Universal Arch Kit.  It is essentially a pre-fab MDF arch that you nail onto studs.  There are a lot of YouTube videos on this product and really great instructions on their website.  Essentially, you just nail the arch onto your studs, then screw on drywall, then mud and paint!

Start to finish, this did take several days since I did do four coats of joint compound to smooth everything out.  The results are so good, and I’m honestly still in shock at how custom this looks.  The plan is to turn my closet (the one with the bifold doors) into a big arch to match the little one.  My clothes are fairly monochromatic and I don’t have a lot, so I think it should look okay being displayed 24/7.  The bathroom door will stay for now, but when we do a gut bathroom remodel, we’ll probably opt to remove the door and replace it with a pocket door.

With the walk-in closet, we’re about 75% done.  We finished building and trimming out one side, and the other side still needs to be trimmed out.  Then it’s just adding a few baseboards, hang a mirror, and it’ll be ready to go!

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