The Devil is in the Details

by Cait

Sometimes I find myself thinking about the littler details in our house’s decor, like air conditioner vents, door knobs, doors, etc. Currently our house has hollow core doors and standard brass knobs.

From Just Home Decor

I would love to find something like this for our ceiling a/c vents. Technically these are meant for floor and wall vents, but size-wise they’d work just fine, and it’s not like we adjust the direction of our existing vents, so maybe they’d be ok? I’ve seen some at Lowe’s too, but I didn’t measure those. (Strangely my tape measure wasn’t in my purse. What? You mean no else keeps a tape measure in their purse?)

from Anthropologie

I have loved these doorknobs from Anthro ever since we used them when we made our bed for our master bedroom, and I really, really want to use them in our house.  Sadly I do not have $38 to spend per seven-or-so doors in our house. If anyone with connections to Anthro (no worries Kara, I’m not looking at you! haha) ever offered me these doorknobs I would jump at the chance so fast. Maybe one day I’ll fall into a giant pile of money.

from Lowe’s (but available pretty much everywhere)

We tried to get these doorknobs as a compromise (and by “tried to get” what I mean is, we have them, but we don’t like them for our house).  The diameter of the knob is smaller, I hate the polished brass. I know I could paint them, but it’s still just not the same.

I want to pair the knobs with five-panel doors like the one leaning up in the art room. I scored this one and two other 24″ doors from ReStore, but we still need at least three 32″ doors (the other end of the house can wait, if it needs to). We special ordered some 5-panel doors from Lowe’s a while back, but they aren’t the same.

It may be hard to see, but the panels on the ones we ordered are the same height (depth?) as the rest of the door, with just a little indent/trough around the panel. I think they’ll coordinate nicely with the actual antique doors that we scored (when we actually get around to putting them up… oops) but one day I’d like them all to match. I’m pretty sure the ones in the style of the antique doors are really expensive though. Apparently I have expensive taste (not like I didn’t already know that, I guess).

Does anyone else put this much thought into doors, doorknobs and air vents?


23 Responses to “The Devil is in the Details”

  1. My brass door knobs kill me! And yes, I keep a “travel sized” tape measure in my purse :)

    • Ours kill me, too. And they also have paint all over them because whoever painted the doors (poorly) did not think to remove them.

      Glad I’m not the only one with a “travel sized” tape measure in my purse!

  2. YES I do!!! I actually am planning to purchase those exact same doors! After we built our sliding shoji doors, the old 6-panel standard doors in our house just don’t make sense (not to mention that they’re super beat up from the previous owners). And of course, if I’m thinking about new doors, I’m absolutely thinking about new knobs!!! I can’t wait to pick them out, but I’ve put the doors and knobs on the lower priority list for now.

    I LOVE the vents you picked! The only time I think about vents though is when I’m thinking about the ones that still need to be replaced. :)

    Love your picks Cait!

    • Thanks Ashley!

      Yeah, buying more doors and knobs is currently pretty low on our list, but since we already have a few we might try to get those hung soon. We’ll see I guess.

      I think the fact that we have a vent directly over our bed helps fuel the “thinking about air vents” portion of my life. That and my overwhelming desire to get rid of the white-vents-on-wood-ceiling look in the living room. Otherwise I’d probably be like “wait, air what?” Ok, who am I kidding, I’d have thought about it eventually because I not exactly “normal” in the things that bug me. But I kind of blame Lowe’s for having nice antique brass ones near plumbing, it made me start thinking about the ones in our house.

  3. We wanted to replace all our vent covers, then got to the store and figured out they were all wacky sizes and quickly abandoned that idea! The old ones are all painted the wall color instead.

    • I think ours are a normal-ish size, maybe. I only measured the outside of the vents and compared it to the sizes on the website. I guess we’ll find out. Otherwise the ones on the wood ceiling will probably get painted to blend better.

  4. Like Sara, we tried to buy replacement wall vent covers because the previous owners had painted them the former wall color and they were pretty beat up, only to realize that most of ours are weird sizes and are probably original to our 1954 house. We bought a couple cans of white spray paint instead!

    A guy at HD told us we have a specialty plumbing and HVAC store in our town that sells vent covers in many more sizes than they do, but we haven’t checked it out yet. Might be an idea if your vents aren’t standard sizes.

  5. I hope it’s easy. :) The wall vents we saw were labeled by the duct size. Our ducts are apparently normal so we could find some that looked like they would fit, but the outer dimensions didn’t match up to cuts in our baseboards. You probably won’t have that problem since you’re looking for ceiling vent covers!

    • I hope it’s easy, too! I think these are labeled by the duct size, since it said 6×12 is the inner dimension (and the outside is 7.5×13.5). I’ll let everyone know whether they work out when we get around to ordering a few to try.

      That’s a bummer about the cuts in the baseboard not matching up :(

  6. I hate our brass door knobs, but what I really hate is that the two locking knobs have one side brass, the other is silver… I thought about spray painting them, but Ben thinks they’d scratch right away. I think he’s right, especially with the kids. And, I too carry a travel size tape measure in my purse and I usually have a full size in the diaper bag.

    I feel your pain on the doors, too. Ours are flat panel, hollow core. Though, ours are 60’s hollow core so they’re much more durable than current hollow doors. So, someday, I want to paint them, because we don’t like the quality of new hollow doors and don’t want to pay for 10 new solid doors…

    Just know, you’re not alone. :)

    • I’m glad I’m not alone, Amanda! I have a mini tape measure in my purse, and one of the paper ReStore ones in my wallet. And I am thinking about getting a larger (maybe 12ft) one for my purse because the 6ft one is sometimes too small.

      I’ve heard some good things about spray painting fixtures, but you’re right about the kids maybe scratching them more/faster.

      Our doors probably would have been ok except that some jerkwad put holes in them (I assume by hanging things) and them pathed them poorly. Here’s hoping for a warm, dry weekend for painting the doors stashed in the shed…

  7. I have ugly doors with brass knobs too!! I want to change them, but that always seems to fall to the bottom of the money list.
    The previous owners of our house must wanted to have cut costs – because on closets, the outside is a door knob, but the inside is a deadbolt where the knob should be….weird!

    • That is really weird about the knob/deadbolt!

      Completely understand about low priority. We scooped up some doors when we found a good deal, but we haven’t installed them and I don’t like the knobs we bought.

  8. I do! Well maybe not the air vents. Once we put in wood floors I might care about those more, but for the moment they are off my radar. Door knobs though, you’re right down my alley. We have builders grade brass and they drive me nutso. Before I go and buy new ones (we have 13 interior doors) I am going to try and spraypaint them as soon as it’s warm enough. YHL mentioned they might try to spraypaint theirs, so I’m tempted to wait for their tutorial. :)

    • Go for it! I think they would probably hold up pretty well (especially since you and Mike don’t have kids like Amanda above), but if not it should at least tide you over for a while, right?

    • Hey, you can totally spraypaint the cheap brass knobs and stuff, you just want to make sure you use an appropriate poly sealant OVER them as the last coat – that will help prevent wearing off and chipping.

      • Thanks Jane! I think we might start by painting the existing knobs, or painting the base of the inexpensive glass knobs we bought for now. I also saw something on Yellow Brick Home about coating parts you don’t want paint ob with vasoline before spray painting, so we might try that. Hopefully it works out.

  9. If you can replace your AC vents and door knobs – why wouldn’t you? We replaced all our brass knobs with brushed nickel ones. IF we had an AC, I would be down changing out the covers too.

  10. Ok, so is no one going to comment on the awesomeness that is the dress apparently made from plastic Target shopping bags? :)


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