DIY Sliding Door

Want to incorporate a sliding door somewhere in your house? Me too! Freaked out by the price of barn door hardware? Me too! But check it out, I received an email from a sweet gal named Brier this week, and she and her hubby figured out an easy way to get the look for less. Check it out…

“Hi Layla, my name is Brier and I follow you on Pinterest. I noticed that you pinned a sliding barn door photo. I really love that look and wanted one for our hallway, but barn door hardware is expensive, man! I tried to justify spending twice what we paid for the door itself on the hardware, but that didn’t fly. Luckily for us, my husband is a genius! Ours doesn’t quite have the “barn door” look, but I think it’s pretty and it was a whole lot easier than ripping out a wall to put in a pocket door.

Here’s how he did it:

First, he got a piece of double track (the kind that’s attached to the top of mirrored sliding closet doors) and separated it in half- so instead of two tracks, there was only one track. (I don’t actually know if you can buy a one-track…um, track…but, if so, that would be easier).

Next, he spray-painted the track flat black, and mounted it to the bottom of a 2″ x 6″ piece of wood that he distressed and stained to match the door. After that, he mounted the 2×6 to the wall above the door frame so the door would stick out far enough from the wall to get past the door frame molding. Then, he attached the “cars” (the rollers that fit in the track) to the top edge of the door, and slid it into the track.

To prevent the door from swinging out into the room, he mounted some little rubber “stops” to a couple of chunks of wood that are screwed down into the floor…

There’s one on the opposite side of the door opening too…

Pretty cool idea, huh?

Thanks for sharing your project with us Brier. We’ll definitely be trying it out here at TLC when we get around to working on our master bathroom door project!

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Comments

  1. Betsy says

    What a great idea! My mom has been looking to do this to the bathroom door in her bedroom but it is so expensive. This looks affordable and easy enough for us to do ourselves!

  2. says

    I’ve SOOO been wanting to do this. I want to place this on my main hallway bathroom but trying to figure out how to do a locking mechanism or at least a latch or hook? Not sure how, but this is awesome. Thanks so much to the both of you smart ladies…oh and you husband :)

    • says

      Hey Kim,
      Use an old window latch. Just mount the moving part of the latch on the door, and the stationary part on the door jamb. You’ll have to install is sideways, but it will work.

  3. Erin says

    I have been planning a barn door for our laundry door too, and considered something like this, but I’m wondering about the weight? Most wood barn doors are heavier than closet doors, by a lot. Wondering how that would hold up with use, or if it would eventually pull out of the door?

  4. Sherry Ann says

    Love this. We have a pantry in our breakfast nook and the door opens into the table area (very inconvenient and in the way). I had mentioned to my husband I thought a sliding “barn” like door would be so cool. He thought it would be too expensive and next to impossible. Hah, here is the solution! Yay!

  5. says

    Layla,
    So glad Brier e-mailed you and you in turn shared with us! This is a brilliant and creative way to get the barn door look for so much less!
    Too bad we are already in the process of installing a barn door or I would have used this method.
    Your Friend,
    Deborah

  6. says

    Layla, this is a terrific post. And as the look is somewhat trendy, changing it down the road will be do-able and relatively painless with a bit of spackle and paint. Brava.

  7. says

    I LOVE this solution! Both price-wise and looks-wise, I like it better than the rustic barn-door option. You smart, hard-working people impress me. And you know who you are!!!!!

  8. Ashley says

    I don’t see any prices or cost estimates listed. Would that be a possibility as well as where the supplies were purchased? Thanks!

    • Brier says

      Hi Ashley,
      We got the doors at Home Depot (in Canada). They weren’t cheap (solid wood and all that), but they’re beautiful and built to last. Somewhere around $200? Depending on the size of your door and the extras you choose (patterned glass, primed wood, etc.) it could be more or less.
      (http://www.homedepot.ca/product/24×80-zen-style-interior-5-lite-door-with-morocco-privacy-glass-in-clear-pi/979683)
      The hardware came from Menards (http://www.menards.com) in the States and it was somewhere around $20.
      Hope that helps!

      • Michelle says

        Brier~How do you keep the doors from swinging out before it hits the stopper? So happy that you sent this because I had just had someone the day before come out to give me a quote for a pocket door effect (effect because I didn’t want to have to rip any walls out). Now I know I could do this myself! Thank again!

        • Brier says

          Hi Michelle,

          There are two stoppers on either side of the door frame, so no matter where the door is (in terms of opening progression), it always has at least one stopper …um…stopping it from swinging out into the room.
          Did I use the word stop enough yet? Cause I don’t have to stop yet!…um…
          Actually, I’d better.
          Good luck DIY. It’s super simple! (And I can totally say that because my husband did the whole thing, not me! Hee!)

  9. says

    What a great alternative for the expensive hardware for the sliding door. I’ve been wanting to replace a bathroom pocket door and a closed pocket door for ions. I think my hubby can do this!

  10. Cristi says

    I lived in Shanghai for 3 years and our house had tons of these “external” sliding doors. The way ours were made in China is very similar to this only instead of leaving the hardware exposed at the top, a simple cornice of sorts was built that came down just low enough to cover the hardware so from the front it just looked like a really cool molding that ran across the top of the doors. I don’t know if that makes sense…but it’s just another option for doing it without it costing a fortune.

  11. Claudia says

    Thank you sooooo much for passing this along. I have been waiting, and waiting for a barn-door-hardware solution for the budget minded.

  12. says

    I have just the spot for that! A short hallway that leads to two bedrooms and a bathroom but it’s close to the kitchen and living area and a sliding door like this would be perfect…I could close off that bed/bath area for more privacy and it would be quieter in the bedroom area! Wow! Thanks for this post.

  13. Kim says

    SOOO excited by this idea! We have a teeny tiny downstairs bathroom that is begging for a pocket door but since I don’t (well, my husband) want to tear down a wall this seems to be the perfect solution! Awesome.

  14. Katie says

    This looks great and so affordable. Am I the only one that doesn’t know where the locking mechanism goes (if that’s even possible)? I too, would like to put it on a bathroom that could really use the space-saving option, but it definitely needs to be able to lock. Help?!

  15. says

    Brilliant! I’m soooo doing it in our downstairs family room. I have been thinking I will use inexpensive slab doors (like on a closet that uses those tracks) and paint them flat black for the kids to use as chalkboards in the play area:)

  16. says

    Was totally inspired that the task no longer seems as daunting…I might even try to take it on as a spring project! Thanks for sharing, also posted about this in my blog! :)

  17. says

    I built his and her closets in our bedroom and have been trying to figure out what type of doors to use. I love these! I wonder how difficult it would be to modify them for closets?

  18. Julie says

    So genius! I have loved the barn door look for so long, but have been scared off by the price of the hardware. Definitely bookmarking this page!

  19. Ter'e says

    What a co-inky-dink!!!!
    Yesterday I emailed y’all about a fix for my kitchen pantry doors. Now this!!!! Looks like quite a few of us have this same dilema!!!!
    Can we have a little more discussion on “door ideas”???? My problem…er….situation….. is the darn kitchen bi-fold doors that I hate! How about some door alternatives?????
    Pretty please!!!!!?????

  20. Donnella says

    Awesome. I love that look and now can afford it. Wonder where I’ll put it?

    Just watched Traci’s latest video. Does Eli realize that you’re married to Kevin? I think he’s in love!

  21. says

    I don’t necessarily love sliding doors, but this is a great way to be able to get one for a reasonable price and not too much building hassle. I also love the fact that the husband thought about the fact that sliding doors that swing outward are extremely annoying, and made that rubber stopper as a fix.Is there a better type/style of door to get when thinking about putting in a sliding door? For instance, does it have to be a more narrow build to accommodate this track?

  22. says

    SO glad to see their door stop solution. I’ve had my barn door up since last year and could never figure this out. The barn door was a real pain in the behind to construct and hang, but I love it. It opens up the space in my bathroom and is just what I needed.

  23. Jen says

    A little warning…. When we wanted to put this type of door in our hallway that leads to the bedrooms, our architect would not let us! He was concerned that if there were a fire, it would be too difficult to open them in a panic. You may want to consider where you place this kind of door and about leaving them closed at night if they lead to bedrooms..

    • Brier says

      Thanks for the heads up! We actually leave it open most of the time. It leads to a back room that doubles as a guest “area,” so it’s more for privacy in that case only.

  24. says

    Thanks so much, I’ve been trying to figure out how to put a slider in front of our wet bar which has bifolds that are in the way when open. This might work if we can do something wide enough.

  25. james says

    Great idea, perfect answer to a narrow hallway that my current door opens into, with the door gone, hallway gains an inch or so, and the door knob that’s always catching pockets and ripping pants would be gone!

  26. says

    I actually just installed sliding barn doors in my house as well. I found a kit at Home Depot specifically for this purpose and with the premade door it was all less than $60.

    • says

      Hey Juleen, I’m totally planning this project for my office, would you mind sharing a few more details? Did you find the hardware in the closet section? I have home depot and Lowe’s here where I live, and I’d LOVE to know how you did this!!

  27. says

    What a clever budget friendly solution! We were lucky enough to find barn door hardware on Craig’s List (2 tracks for $30) and install a sliding door in our dining room but I love this idea … I have a laundry room with no door. Thanks for sharing!

  28. Linda says

    Thanks for sharing. Whant to do this for my bathroom. We have a pocket door now but it keeps falling off the rail and sticking such a pain.

  29. keisha says

    You inspired me! We have since put in a double pair of french doors ($20 each from the habitat reuse store) that i frosted with window film ($18 from lowes) and i now finally have bathroom doors!!! The whole project cost me around $120 including paint and door pulls. I have painted the wood support beam the same color as the wall and it just about disappeared. Thank you for giving me much needed privacy from the prying eyes of 2 kids.

  30. Carmen says

    Thank you for sharing – we have been looking for a barn door for our closet – will be doing this instead! Awesome idea. Thank you again!

  31. Lindsay says

    I “Pinned” your DIY barndoor onto my Pinterest page. Man ol Man it got 566 RePins…You guys must have done something right. It also got 124 “Likes”

    My husband and I are making it ourselves. Picked up some cedar planks and the track. Thanks for posting. Barn doors are so cool, but very spendy. This only cost us $91 bucks :)

  32. kat says

    thank you so much. i have been rackin my brain trying to do this for under $350. should i send you all the money i saved or just this note of TONS of THANKS ;)

  33. Erin says

    I love this! I have wanted a barn door for our powder room downstairs for months, but just couldn’t justify the price of the hardware. I even went to a farm supply store to see what they had. I found something much cheaper, but didn’t buy it. Thanks to you , I now know what we are going to do! Thanks

  34. Diane Hebert says

    Just used your idea ! We have a small bathroom and this really works….looks great…bought the hardware at Lowes for 13.98 !

  35. says

    I am remodeling my bathroom right now and I was trying to explain to my husband what I wanted for a door. This is it. Thank you !!!

  36. kristin says

    I also found a single track and roller on TractorSupply.com. Not sure if the price is lower than the double track (split) but it was definately less than commerical sliding door hardware.

  37. Blue Roses says

    Thank you SO much for this brilliant How-To.

    My version went up today saving me big bucks. We used an inexpensive flat door, then covered both sides by designing and installing a laminate flooring. Very cool. Thanks again.

  38. Stephie says

    This is super awesome! I so love this idea. The only thing I might do different is to remove the crown molding from around my doorway. Of course I’ll have to paint the underneath of wall but that’s just a great excuse to update the room’s color scheme. Thanks for the idea and how-to!

  39. Jay Oldridge says

    If you used a heavy piece of crown molding turned upside down to receive the hardware setup, the top would be really unusual, and still come out far enough to clear the door frame. I can think of a lot of different ways to address this to make it take on different house styles and still maintain the whole “Barn Door” flavor. Thanks for the tutorial!!!!

  40. Dan says

    Love the idea for hanging the door. I’m doing this myself soon for a finished basement. Like you guys, I found the barn door hardware to be outrageously priced. Where did you guys get the track from?

  41. says

    This is brilliant! We’re about to move into a rental house that we hope to be in for the next few years while my fiance and I get married and finish grad school. The house is adorable, but definitely on the small side, and the closets in both bedrooms have no doors. Anything that opens out in the room would take up too much precious floor space and I wasn’t really thrilled about just hanging up curtains to cover them. I’ll have to ask our landlord if he would let us do this! He’s a construction guy who bought the house and completely gutted and rebuilt it, so maybe he would even do it for us if we bought the materials! Hmmmm…

  42. Brian Hicks says

    Great look! You can even hide the upper hardware track if you want by offsetting a second piece of finished wood an inch and a half down, finished the same as the piece that is holding the track but perhaps not quite as thick dimensionally.

  43. scarlett says

    This is awesome! Where did you get the double track though? My dad is doing a project like this for me, but we can’t seem to locate the double track piece.

    • Margaret says

      We haven’t tried this just yet, but I will be either ordering the $30 from Amazon or the $80 from the other site.

  44. peggy tegge says

    we are puting a glass door at the top of the stairs for light on the stairway and this will be perfect!

  45. Kelly says

    Did your track kit come with a bottom track? And if so, has it been an issue not using it? All of the closet door tracks I find seem to include a bottom track that they tell you to use, and I was worried about how much weight the top tracks will hold. Thank you SO much for this and for any information you might be willing to share! I love it and it could be perfect for our closet!!! :D

  46. anna says

    Thank you so much for sharing this. It is exactly what I have been looking for. I have an odd sized closet opening in a room too small for a swing-out door. I have seen other, similar doors, but this appears to be the simplest installation.

  47. Brian says

    This is awesome. I have looking for an alternative to pocket doors for our “entertainment” room. Thanks.

    Cheers,
    Brian

  48. says

    I love this Idea! mt husband and I are selling our current home which is WAY too big and rebuilding else-where. I really like this idea because we are building much smaller. This will help save space.

  49. Sara says

    Thank goodness I found this. We currently have a master bathroom with no door. It really bugs me. This is exactly what I wanted to do to separate the bedroom from the bathroom.

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