Buh-Bye Bi-Folds: Removing Them For An Open Look

Our new place sure has its share of bi-fold doors. Like this pair sectioning off the future dining room and the main hallway (see a floor plan here to get your bearings):

And this nearby set that closes off the hallway that leads to most of the bedrooms (we removed one door to get the daybed through on moving day):

Then in our bedroom we’ve got another big set closing off the bathroom sink area…

…and a single bi-fold door right next to it closing off the walk-in closet.

That doesn’t even include all of the bi-folds that close off the other three bedroom closets. So basically… yeah, there’s a lot of ’em. And unfortunately most of them go against the whole open / airy vibe that we’re going for, so most of ’em had to go. Sorry bi-folds. But we’re already loving how the hallway looks so much more open sans doors.

And getting rid of the straggler leading to the back bedrooms certainly helped too (we still have to go back and putty / paint where the doors were attached).

Our master bedroom is even looking airier thanks to the door departure.

And although we’re going to leave them on all of the other bedroom closets for now, we did take the bi-fold door off of our own closet (we were constantly bumping into it). We’re thinking we might replace it with a thick floor length curtain at some point.

Another bi-fold that didn’t get the axe was one between the kitchen and the laundry / mudroom.

We don’t have a particular fondness for the look of this door, so right now its saving grace is purely functional. Without it there’s a straight shot from our carport right into the kitchen. See, here I am leering through the door to demonstrate.

We’ve learned that surprisingly enough, the side door that leads out to the carport is the one all of the neighbors use when they stop by (in the words of the previous owners: “if someone comes to the front door, they’re probably selling something”). And since my wife can and will nurse pretty much anywhere – even at the kitchen table – it’s probably not a good idea to leave that window unobscured.

So we’re going to leave that bi-fold up for now, but as soon as we can find a moment to frost that glass (so the light still pours in but the view is muddled) that bi-fold will be getting the same farewell treatment that the rest of them got. Stand by for that unbelievably exciting undertaking (I’m kidding, but hey- not every project is mind blowing). Oh and we’re donating all of the bi-fold doors to the Habitat For Humanity ReStore so they get to live on in someone else’s house, as opposed to junking up a landfill. Have you guys been to a ReStore yet? They’re full of awesome old windows, doors, sinks, faucets, light fixtures, and even rainbow colored toilets. Believe me when I say that there’s something for everyone.

Psst- This week’s BabyCenter post is all about trying to get Clara to adjust well to the new house (so we didn’t have an angry/grumpy/confused/scared bean on our hands). Here’s what worked for us.


  1. Erin says

    Do you have room in your laundry room to replace the stacking washer and dryer (when necessary) with 2 side by side units? Or do you plan on bumping out that wall when you enclose the garage? It looks a bit tight in there to put them side by side but that is so much more convenient. I HATED my stacked unit when i lived in my tiny studio in DC.

    • says

      Hey Erin,

      Nope, no room for side by side, but we’re going to go with nice energy efficient front loading stacklables (John’s sister has them and doesn’t seem to mind too much).


  2. MaryMoo says

    Not sure what you have in mind in terms of major remodeling but it looks there is a lot of room and possibilities for your closet and master bath area to reconfigure so you don’t have that opening to stare at the sink.

  3. says

    Just wanted to tell you guys I LOVE your new house.

    The floors in the bedroom/bathroom are so pretty. I cannot wait to see what you do to this house.

  4. says

    First of all, I am in love with the wonderful floors in the master. Those thick hardwood planks sure get a man’s engine going….probably TMI…oh well.

    Second, I think it’s really amazing how doors can really cramp a house. I really like how open everything is, especially that long hallway. Are those bi-fold areas completely going away, or do you have plans to do updates on any (like you talked about with the master walk-in?)

    • says

      Hey Brandt,

      Most of them are gone for good! We just don’t need bi-folds separating hallways and open living areas. As for the ones that block closets and that sort of thing, we might curtain them as we mentioned. Who knows where we’ll end up!


  5. says

    You didn’t mention how noticeably beautiful your wide wood floors are in your bedroom now that the bi-fold is gone. What gorgeous wood- I am jealous!

  6. Elizabeth says

    See…this is why I love this place. I never would’ve thought of the sliding barn door effect for my closet conundrum, but it just may be a possibility…YEA!!!!

  7. Danielle says

    Hi YHL –

    I just got a new front loading LG Steam washer and dryer. They cost a lot of $ but it was well worth it. I love the washer and dryer. They are huge so they fit a lot of laundry in them, so i cut down how many load I do. Plus they are energy efficient.

  8. Jessica M says

    We got rid of a couple of sets of bifold doors in our 1957 ranch too. In our daughter’s room, we have some wonderful curtains hung with ribbon. In our office, we used Ikea’s Kvartal sliding track system. Looks really slick in there (we used the panels not the curtains)!

  9. Lynn says

    i am sure all of this is T-I-R-I-N-G….but I am so jealous that your JOB is to make your house look beautiful and unpack….I scrambled for weeks/months around our work schedueles trying to make our new house livable. Its what you do ALL DAY!!!! SOOO jealous :)

    • says

      Hey Lynn,

      We are very lucky to get to work on our house as part of our profession- but don’t be too jealous! Remember that we have to photograph things, upload and edit pics, write two-ish posts per day, answer comment questions, write our BabyCenter posts along with our columns for Do It Yourself magazine, coordinate giveaways, and do general programming/blog maintenance to keep YHL up and running. So it’s definitely only about an hour or two a day that we get to devote to actual projects! And of course now that we have a baby one of us is always on Clara-duty while the other one is blogging/painting/etc. But it’s definitely our passion so we can’t complain! We’re just busy little bees – that’s for sure.


  10. KathyG says

    A business doesn’t run itself. I’m glad you remind people about all the million things that go on behind the scenes to make it so you can comment to each person.

    Good closet doors are always worth the investment, I think. In my master, we prefer no door at all. As long as you can’t see it from the hallway, I think that’s the way to go.

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