Wednesday, March 17, 2010


This perfectly appointed door belongs to the extraordinary interior designer Miles Redd.  The soft sea blue paint compliments the shiny antique nickel hardware-an elegant and welcoming entrance.  Like accessorizing your little black dress with the right earrings and shoes, door hardware is an important element to making your home look its best.  It's disappointing to enter a freshly painted and decorated home and seeing old pitted doorknobs, or even worse, hinges covered with layers of paint. Replacing old hardware is a relatively easy fix and makes a world of difference in the room.

I'll admit, I'm a little bit of a nut when it comes to door hardware. It all started 3 years ago when I oversaw the renovation of a 1925 Beaux Arts Limestone mansion on the Upper East Side.  A former Kips Bay Show House, the home had impeccable bones but needed some serious sprucing up.  We decided to have all the window hardware and door hinges removed and replated in nickel.  It was an arduous undertaking-each piece was tagged, bagged and cataloged so that we would know exactly where each piece belonged in the seven stories of doors and windows.  I delivered them to the replater-a fascinating shop with most of the top NYC decorators flea market finds waiting to be chromed or nickeled.  A month later, 4 boxes arrived back with each piece (even the tiny screws) freshly nickeled and carefully wrapped in tissue.  Unfortunately, my cataloging system was no where to be seen and we were left with the ultimate puzzle, finding the correct home for hundreds of pieces of hardware.

The doorknobs were all mismatched, having been replaced through the years, so I went to Simon's Hardware to find one style to be used throughout the house that would compliment the decorative hinges and window fittings. Simon's is the ultimate Manhattan decorative hardware emporium, with rooms of specialty hardware and every doorknob style imaginable. We chose a simple Baldwin polished nickel round that was available in the variety of sizes we needed. Installation of all the hardware took a team of two an entire week, but when it was done, each room looked perfectly finished.  It's true, the little things make all the difference.

The living room installation shows beautiful antique casement windows and replated antique hardware.

Installed casement window stays and sash locks
Close up of replated casement sash lock

Decorative hinge

Nanz decorative hardware-couture for your doors!

Baldwin polished nickel doorknob has a beautiful modern motif.


erica@ moth design+luxe life said...

Fantastic blog! Love Miles' door and the accompanying story... oh and I cannot wait to try the affogato! Looks great.


Thanks Erica! I'm so glad to have you reading-have a great day, barbara

Jane Schott said...

I have used this door color before and I might just use it again on that project in East Hampton again. Your post reminded me how wonderful it looks with the shiny silver.

Enjoy your Sunday.

P.S. Going next week to EH and will call your drapery source. Many thanks for that.