LivingEtc, May 2012
For the show-stopping opener your home deserves, beat a path to the experts’ doors
The Showroom, 406 Merton Road, London SW18 5AD (020 8877 8920, ayrtonbespoke.com)
The Latvian fir used in most of Ayrton Bespoke’s products is a dense softwood; particularly useful for the UK, because of the similar humidity levels. (Apparently it rains a lot in the Baltics too.) Plus factories in Latvia keep production costs and therefore prices down. Meanwhile back in London, a local CAD team deliver bespoke plans to perfectly fit your project, and a showroom in Wandsworth puts people on the ground to deliver the excellent service Ayrton prides itself on.
233/235 Kensington High Street, London W8 6SF (0844 482 9122, banham.co.uk)
Your front door has two quite different jobs; while making guests feel welcome, it should also keep unwanted visitors safely on the other side. If protecting your home is a concern, security specialists Banham, may be the company for you. Their range of Meranti hardwood, steel-reinforced doors with security glass, come ready-primed – or unfinished so you can paint them yourself. Four or six panel versions, as well as custom designs are available, so you can be sure your front door is as smart as it is secure.
DOORS & DOORS
329 & 333 Regents Park Road, Finchley, London N3 1DP (020 8346 4417, doorsanddoors.co.uk)
With a name like Doors & Doors and the strap line “everything for doors,” there are no prizes for guessing what this company sells. Their showrooms (there’s also one in Leicester) are definitely worth a visit to see a huge range of doors in oak, walnut, cherry, mahogany, pine and ash. Once you’ve made your mind up, they offer everything from measuring up, to fitting and painting your door once it’s in place – all you’ve got to do is decide on the colour.
30 Wandsworth Road, Vauxhall, London SW8 2LG (020 7394 2100, lassco.co.uk)
If you’ve got a period property, you might prefer a reclaimed front door. Vauxhall’s Lassco has a smorgasbord of salvaged delights; everything from sinks to sculptures. It’s easy to lose a whole afternoon in there and come out with more than you bargained for. But stay focused, and it’s the perfect place to source a period door with a bit more history than the Joneses’.
THE LONDON DOOR COMPANY
155 St Johns Hill, London, SW11 1TQ (020 7801 0877, londondoor.co.uk)
For doors you can feel really good about, check out The London Door Company. A genuinely London-based outfit, their doors are made in a workshop in Wimbledon, where they take the responsibility of training and developing their local craftspeople very seriously. They’re also eco-savvy; using sustainable timber, making doors that last and recycling as much as they can – not to mention the fact they plant a tree for every door they sell. And with 60% of their business coming from previous customers or recommendations, the quality can’t be bad either.
MODERN DOORS LTD
AJP Business Centre, 152-154 Coles Green Road, London, NW2 7HD (020 8438 6329, modern-doors.co.uk)
With a focus on contemporary and bespoke design, Modern Doors Ltd is the logical choice for a newer property, but could also make a real style statement when updating an older one. They have a wide range, but if you don’t spot something that takes your fancy, they can also create a design to your specifications. We’ve got our eye on the clean lines of the Oak Moderna. To bag yourself a bargain, look out for their sales and offers around bank holiday weekends.
NATURAL WINDOWS LTD
9 Park Parade, Gunnersbury Avenue, Acton, W3 9BD (020 8993 8274, naturalwindows.com)
Better known for their windows, Natural Windows Ltd also make an impressive range of entry doors – their eighteen standard designs can be customised to provide almost endless choice. But it’s the material that really gets them excited; “We are passionate about wood and believe that wood is the most natural, eco-friendly and beautiful material. Wood can bring unique style and warmth to any living or working space.”
THE ORIGINAL DOOR COMPANY
97 Bollo Lane, London W3 8QN (020 8896 3019, theoriginaldoor.co.uk)
With over a hundred doors and hundreds of accessories on display, The Original Door Company’s Chiswick showroom is well worth a visit if you’re on a door hunt. But don’t worry about being overwhelmed, because the philosophy here is all about making it simple and offering as much or as little help as you need. Just ask.
SPS TIMBER WINDOWS
61 Revelstoke Road, Wimbledon Park, London SW18 5NL (020 8640 5035, spstimberwindows.co.uk)
Not just purveyors of fine timber windows, but doors too. The perfect combination of traditional joinery and the latest techniques is employed to custom-make each door to your requirements, whether it’s a replacement door or a completely new design.
STAINED GLASS DOORS COMPANY
Hurst Farm, Hurst Lane, Privett, Alton, Hampshire GU34 3PL (01730 828444, thestainedglassdoorscompany.com)
Bring a little colour into your hallway. Aiming to provide products that you’ll love for a lifetime, The Stained Glass Doors Company have been supplying reclaimed and reproduction doors from a little village in Hampshire since 1999. Their antique stained glass doors range from restrained Victorian designs to art nouveaux floral patterns – and our favourite; classic 1930s sunbursts. What better way to put a smile on your face as you finally turn the key in your door after a long day?
112 – 116 Church Road, Northolt, Middlesex UB5 5AE (0845 453 0250, todd-doors.co.uk)
With the largest selection of timber doors in the UK and an eclectic selection of traditional, contemporary and everything in between, Todd Doors really do have something to suit every taste. Established in 1952, they’ve been going as long as the Queen has been on the throne, so they’ve got plenty of experience too. Keep an eye on their website for deals of the month, often with up to 50% off.
Unit 4, Chesham Business Park, 33 Townsend Road, Chesham, Buckinghamshire HP5 2AA (01494 778787, urbanfront.co.uk)
Founded by a team of bright young things after they couldn’t find a single contemporary door on the market in 2003, Urban Front works on a design-led philosophy, registering all their designs with the UK Intellectual Property Office, to ensure you get a design you won’t find anywhere else. We’re lusting after the slightly kooky Milano door. Everything they do is designed and made in England, but shipped all over the world, with current customers in America, Canada, the Caribbean, Europe and the Middle East.
Dublin is famous for its colourful front doors. Explanations range from a rebellion against British orders to paint them black when Prince Albert died to women trying to prevent their drunken husbands coming home to the wrong house.