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Doors for Small Spaces

Tuesday February 11th, 2020

When you have a small space, every little interior design detail counts to maximize the functionality of the space. Choosing the right type of door, with minimum doorway swing, can make all the difference.

13 Doors for Small Spaces

  1. Barn Doors
  2. Sliding Doors
  3. Pocket Doors
  4. Accordion Doors
  5. Folding Doors
  6. Adoorable Doors
  7. Bifold Doors
  8. Dutch Doors
  9. French Doors
  10. Mirrored Doors
  11. Glass Doors
  12. Garage Doors
  13. Curtains
Failure to take into account the swing of the door style you want can limit the ways you can use the space. The good news is, however, that these types of doors for small spaces can help you make the most of the limited space you have available—whether it is a closet, bedroom, playroom, pantry, laundry room, or some other small space.

1. Barn Doors

Barn doors are the perfect interior doors for small spaces. They essentially operate as an exterior pocket door, running along a track. This eliminates the door swing, making it an ideal alternative for tight quarters. Barn doors are currently trendy, for good reason. You can find barn doors in nearly any color or style. You can get barn doors that are made of wood, metal, glass, or mirror. Once you’ve picked your material, you can customize your design further with different styles and hardware, making the door fit into your room’s overall design even more.

Barn door closet doors can help you keep your closet out of sight, so your bedroom looks neat and organized. Barn doors can also be used to give your bathroom privacy, which is especially helpful in cramped half bathrooms. A barn door can be a single door or a double door. You can even get bypassing barn doors to further maximize your space, which is ideal for closet doors.

2. Sliding Doors

When most people think of sliding doors, they immediately think of sliding patio doors. While you can use sliding bedroom doors to access your balcony, there are other uses to consider as well. Using sliding doors for small spaces can be an effective way of maximizing the available square footage in a room. Sliding closet doors come in a range of materials, such as frosted glass, mirror, or wood. This can add a bit of style to your room without needing space for the door to swing open, thanks to the sliding door hardware. Beyond the bedroom, using sliding shower doors for small spaces where door swing isn’t feasible can give your bathroom a modern look without the use of a traditional shower curtain.

3. Pocket Doors

Wouldn't it be great if you could get rid of the door altogether? Using pocket doors for small spaces is a smart option since the hidden door gives you the functionality of a door without taking any space. This makes them an ideal space saver. Using pocket doors with your walk-in closet means you don't have to worry about anything getting hidden behind the door. Like barn doors, pocket doors also make great bathroom doors for small spaces, such as a half bath or a tight full bath. You can also use double pocket doors to help open up your small space. This allows you to divide the space as needed while creating an open feel.

What kind of doors are used for pocket doors? 

Pocket doors require extensive installation since they'll slide directly into the wall. However, they are easily one of the best options for small spaces. Plus, pocket doors can be made from many different types of doors, including wood, glass, salvaged scrap metal, reclaimed wood, mirrored, or even chalkboard. Pocket doors are perfect for your playroom, laundry room, bathroom, or small apartment.

4. Accordion Doors

Accordion doors are a great choice when space is tight. When most people think of accordion doors, they think of the cheap vinyl that used to be popular. However, accordion doors have gotten a serious upgrade over the years. Now they come in numerous styles that can completely transform the smallest of spaces. For instance, accordion glass doors can be used to open your space to the outdoors when used on a patio or balcony, making your small bedroom look (and even feel) much larger. This is an especially good option if your bedroom has a dream-worthy view.

If you’re looking for closet door ideas, accordion closet doors take up limited space and can help you easily see into your entire closet. You can get them in several different materials and styles, such as wood, vinyl, glass, and even French accordion doors.

5. Folding Doors

There’s nothing worse than being limited in your furniture layout, or even furniture selection, because of the size of your space. When you have to worry about door swing, you may be limited in your room layout. If you’re looking for alternatives to sliding glass doors, folding doors for small spaces are popular. Folding doors can help you open up your space by minimizing the barriers between two spaces. You can easily open the door to create a large open space, with minimal door swing. Folding glass doors can be especially helpful for expanding your space by connecting a room to the outdoors. Glass folding doors can serve as a window, flooding your living space with natural light and giving you easy access to your patio when open. Folding doors can be used for more than just the patio, however. They can also be used for closets, playrooms, or when you want to divide the main living space.

6. Adoorable Doors

When you have an exceptionally small space that needs closed off, finding a door that fits can be challenging. Whether it's a small pantry in your kitchen or a play space under the stairs, door options are often limited. This is where you need creative doors for small spaces. Rustica's Adoorable doors may be just what you're looking for. They have a smaller width and height than traditional interior doors, making them an ideal solution for small spaces. Plus, they have unique designs that can fit right in with your overall interior design, such as a saloon-style door or an archway door. When you are looking for small doors for crawl spaces, consider Adoorable doors.

What are the most common internal door sizes?

While it can seem like internal door sizes vary from door to door, in reality, there are only a few sizes that are commonly used. The standard interior door size is 80 inches high and 32 inches wide. You can find a few other sizes as well, such as a door that is only 78-inches high or doors that are 24, 28, or 30-inches wide. You may even find 36-inch wide doors that comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act. However, when you have a truly tight space that you need a door for, these simply won’t work.

Rustica’s Adoorable Doors are 44 ⅛ inches high and only 22 ⅛ inches wide, giving the functionality of a door to the smallest of spaces.

7. Bifold Doors

Bifold doors are some of the most common laundry doors for small spaces. Bifold closets are also popular since they help reduce the amount of door swing while still closing off the space as needed. While most of us are familiar with the traditional shutter-style bifold doors, there are other bifold doors solutions that can offer a bit more style and sophistication to your space. For instance, a bifold barn door is a unique alternative for small closet doors. This allows you to get the look of the barn door using barn door hardware, but rather than acting as an exterior pocket door, it operates as a bifold door. This door style can be used with more than just closets, too. Bifold glass doors are an alternative to traditional sliding patio doors. Meanwhile, you can also opt for a bifold garage door if the traditional garage doors don’t suit your style.

8. Dutch Doors

If you’re looking for a way to flood your space with natural light but are not sold on a traditional glass folding door, consider using a Dutch door. Dutch doors are horizontally split in two, allowing the top half to be open. Opening the top half of the door essentially acts like windows, letting in natural light and visually expanding your small space. While Dutch doors are commonly seen as single doors, you can also install them as double doors, giving an even wider opening to visually expand your small space. These double Dutch doors can easily serve as patio doors for a small space. Dutch doors are an ideal alternative for small playrooms, as the top half can be open for light and air, while the lower half of the door remains closed, keeping small children from wandering out of the room. This also makes them a good choice for individuals or families with pets that need to stay indoors.

9. French Doors

Using French doors for small spaces is another alternative for bringing natural light into your space and making a small room seem larger. A wide variety of French doors are available, including interior sliding French doors, bifold French doors, French sliding barn doors, and even pivot French doors. Traditionally, French doors have been used as an alternative to sliding glass doors for access to outdoor spaces. However, using them as interior doors can help your small space feel bigger while simultaneously enhancing your overall decor. They can be used in virtually every room in your home. As you are pondering bedroom door ideas, give serious consideration to French closet doors as they can help your small master suite look larger while bringing in a touch of luxury.

What if the door opening is not a standard size?

Even if your door opening is not a standard size, you can still install a French door in a small space. One option is to choose narrow French doors. This gives you the same look and feel of traditional French doors but in a much smaller space. This works especially well at the end of a narrow kitchen or as a small pantry door.

Most Rustica French doors are completely customizable. If you have an odd door size, Rustica can create a custom door to fit just the size you need. Working with a quality manufacturer like Rustica is typically your best bet when replacing the doors in your home or work space.

10. Mirrored Doors

Small apartments are tight on space, especially in the bedroom. However, with a few interior design tricks, you can maximize your visual space. One common trick that interior designers use to make a space look bigger is to use mirrors. Mirrors reflect light, both natural and artificial, helping the space look brighter and, in turn, larger. In some rooms, this can be achieved with a mirror wall. However, small apartments often don’t have the space needed to pull off this trick safely. Instead, this same look can be achieved by using mirrored closet doors for small spaces. This not only helps your bedroom look bigger, but it also gives you a full-length mirror for when you are getting dressed.

With mirrored closet doors, door swing is still an issue, especially in rooms with less square footage. Using mirrored barn doors for small spaces can resolve this issue since they practically eliminate door swing altogether. Mirrored barn doors are available in a wide variety of styles, including a full mirror style or a combination of metal and mirror together. This can add a unique visual element to your room’s decor, which can be further enhanced with the perfect barn door pulls. Mirrored closet doors help you take advantage of the benefits of mirrors in your small space while enhancing your overall interior design.

11. Glass Doors

When you find yourself in a small space, using a traditional wooden door can make your tight quarters feel even smaller. Using a glass door can help your space feel open and airy since the living space is not cut off by a solid material. For example, glass doors are a viable option when choosing shower doors for small spaces. The glass helps you visually take in the whole space, rather than feeling crowded by a shower curtain. Depending on the other materials used in the space, glass doors can also add a spa-like feel to your small bathroom.

Using sliding glass doors for small spaces is another way to help open up your space. Sliding glass doors can give you the needed privacy and soundproofing you sometimes require, while still visually opening up the space. If you’re looking for a more modern look you can install glass doors as pocket doors or barn doors, both of which save you valuable square footage in your small space as a result of the reduced door swing.

12. Garage Doors

We all know that a garage door is useful in a garage, but they also make unique doors for small spaces. If you live in a warm, tropical climate, this may be the solution you never knew you needed. They can drastically change your living space and can even feel as though you’ve gained square footage in your otherwise small room. They don’t have any door swing, so you don’t have to worry about adjusting furniture to accommodate a swinging door.

Instead, you can incorporate the outdoors into your living space and expand it beyond the four walls of your small space. The good news is that if you choose this door alternative for your small space, you aren’t stuck with the traditional steel or aluminum garage doors. By opting for a glass garage door, you’ll be able to bring large amounts of natural light into your space. You can still make your tight quarters look bigger even on the days when the weather doesn’t permit opening the door. This is because it essentially serves as a giant window, visually opening your space.

13. Curtains

If you still haven’t found a door style that fits your style or decor, you may be wondering how to cover a doorway without a door. When you need a divider to close off a space (or hide your messy closet), curtains can serve as alternative doors for small spaces. When you choose to use curtains instead of a door, you don’t have to worry about door swing. Instead, you simply have to worry about finding curtains that fit your space and suit your decor. Curtains are an affordable door solution, making them a great alternative if you are on a budget. Hanging a curtain can give you some quick privacy and can easily divide your space as needed. You can hang them on a traditional curtain rod or even a tension rod. This makes them excellent portable doors for small home spaces.

Does a Closet Have to Have a Door?

There is no hard and fast rule that a closet has to have a door. In fact, some designs may be benefited by opting for an open closet that makes use of a well-designed closet organization system with shelves, drawers, and hanging solutions. At the same time, it’s always nice to have the option to hide your closet, especially when it gets a bit messy.

Ultimately, the decision to even have a door is up to you and what you feel works with the overall design and feel of your space.

Best Doors for Small Spaces

When you have a small space with limited clearance space available, you need to maximize every inch of square footage. This means placing special emphasis on door swing since it can easily take up 10 square feet of space. Having a door with a wide door swing can limit the room layout and the placement of furniture and disrupt the natural flow of movement through the space. By focusing on door swing these inconveniences can be minimized, helping you create a well-designed space.

The good news is that there are many options available that drastically minimize door swing or eliminate it altogether. Some of these door styles, such as a glass door, are easy to install in an afternoon, while others, such as pocket doors, require more extensive installation with the help of a professional. Likewise, there are door styles for all types of budgets, ranging from affordable curtains to custom French doors. Working with a manufacturer that is dedicated to quality and customization can help make sure you get exactly what you need to take your space to the next level.

To choose the best door for your space, consider your budget and the overall style and functionality that works best in your small area. The simple act of installing the right type of door in your small space can make all the difference. With a little creativity, you can find an alternative door solution for your small space that will make it look and feel larger, enhancing your entire home.
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