Home Improvements Start at the Front Door

Stacey Freed
February 25, 2014
| Design & Performance, Aesthetics & Style

“We’re seeing a shift from need-based repairs to things that will improve the look of the home,” said Chris Klein, CEO of Fortune Brands Home & Security, which includes Therma Tru, Simonton Windows, and Fypon, at the recent 2014 International Builders Show. And, it seems that many homeowners are starting their improvements at the front door.

Manufacturers are responding with a variety of entry door styles, options and materials to enable consumers to express their individual design preferences.

Looking Good
Aesthetics are important, said Brad Loveless, Simpson Door Co.'s marketing and product development manager, at IBS. “People are splurging on entry doors; they’re looking for something special and custom.”

Many suppliers have connected with the design community to enhance their offerings. Simpson, for example, partnered with architect Jim Cutler to create the Artist Collection of architectural doors, and TruStile Doors surveyed the architecture and design community before releasing its latest product catalog.

"We received a huge response that most new homes built are contemporary or modern,” said Cate Vanegas, director of marketing, TruStile Doors. “The product catalog we just released is our response to that survey, with whole sections on the modern and contemporary architectural designs we have available in our Modern Door Collection and decorative inserts for both types of design trends."

TruStile offers 40 glass/resin inserts for its Modern Collection, as well as metal and leather inserts.

Therma Tru, too, has seen interest in architectural doors―styles with clean lines, textured glass and new grid patterns. “We’re taking the old and making it new and fresh,” said Derek Fielding, director of product development at the company, which has 30 new grid patterns.

Therma Tru appealed to consumers’ desire to mix modern and vintage styles by expanding its Pulse collection of entry doors with a new Mahogany-grained fiberglass door and Echo design for doors and doorlites. The new door styles are specifically designed to enable homeowners to upgrade mid-century modern Ranch and Bungalow-style homes from existing wood to fiberglass doors.

Jeld-Wen also promoted its architectural fiberglass door line in Las Vegas, where it displayed several doors that use new soft-mold technology to deliver the character, warmth and beauty of a wood door. More sustainable than painted wood, the doors come in 20 different styles.

Created to enhance the unique style of existing homes―whether Georgian Revival, mid-century Ranch, Dutch Colonial, Bungalow or Contemporary―the Spotlights Collection of doorglass from ODL Inc. was also on display.

“It’s a program that offers different sizes of doorlites in a flat-profile PVC frame designed to match a lot of the older architecture,” explained Roger Finch, channel marketing manager. “A lot of people are moving from the suburbs back into the city and are revamping older homes. They are taking these homes and trying to bring them back to their original state. So [the Spotlights Collection] offers door configurations that you would see from the 1910s up until today.”

To view the products on display at IBS, visit our IBS Snapshots page. Additional information on new introductions in Las Vegas is also available here. For continuing coverage of the product trends at IBS, see next week's edition of WDweekly.


Freed is a contributing writer for Window & Door.