Though this was my first time building a hidden door and I was a little nervous, she was right – it made such a difference in the space. The trim around arched doorway, as well as baseboards and the switch plate cover are next, I promise.
I knew the best way to hide the door would be to get the seams to line up with the vertical paneling we were already adding to the space. I removed the old door and jamb, then put the edge panel pieces in place as my guide. I had to plane the new pieces down to about 3/8 thickness, then shim every few inches to keep it level and sturdy. When creating the new jamb, I made sure to factor in a 1 inch overhang on the handle side to act as a stop for the door.
Where this door was leading into a kid’s play area, I knew I didn’t want it to be super heavy. So I decided to use 1in thick primed project boards for the perimeter, and square aluminum tubing inside of that to create a rigid structure that was light weight. With the door in place I could now tell exactly where it stopped, how it swung, and I could add all the paneling to truly make it hidden.
I used a 1/8″ tile spacer at the top and sides of the door to match the 1/8″ spacing between the paneling.
Each board was glued and nailed in place to prevent any vibration or loosening over time.