Glass Barn Doors: The Types and Uses

Posted by Silvio Haas on

When you think of barn doors, you may think of giant doors used on an actual barn. In the building world, however, barn doors are simply a type of door that slides rather than swings open or shut. Not only does this give these doors a modern, sophisticated feel, but it also means they need significantly less space to operate than traditional doors. Previously, glass has been used very sparingly in homes because of its fragile nature. In the past, glass shattered very early and had the potential to cause injuries. With new types of tempered glass, however, not only is glass stronger and more durable than ever, but even if it shatters it offers little potential for injury. 

Today, entire homes can be constructed of glass and remain just as safe and secure as any other type of building material. Not only does glass create a fresh, modern look for your home, but it can offer privacy while still keeping an open feel to any space. Barn doors are gaining in popularity due to the wide range of uses and the major functionality they offer in a home. Here are some different types of barn doors and how they can be used in your home.

1. Interior doors

From bedroom doors to bathroom doors to hallway and closet doors, rolling barn doors make an excellent choice for interior doors. Not only do barn doors extend all the way from floor to ceiling, which creates the illusion of a much bigger space, but they also utilize less space. Most modern closet doors are sliding doors that operate much like barn doors. Unlike barn doors, however, closet doors can generally only be opened on one side or the other, since one panel slides behind the other. What they do offer is space savings over doors that swing open and closed. Barn doors offer the space savings of traditional closet doors, but they slide all the way open, creating an expansive portal to the space behind them. Barn doors make excellent interior doors because they can remain open to create a more expansive feel in any room or slide shut to create privacy. A wide variety of hardware is also available for glass barn doors that can help them be a beautiful accent to any type of decor.

2. Partition or wall divider

Open floor plans are becoming more and more desirable because of the wide expanses they create. What open floor plans often lack, however, is privacy. The great thing about barn doors made of glass is that whether they are opened or closed, they still maintain the effect of an expanse of wide open space. When they are closed, however, they create more privacy or an intimate atmosphere. Light is one of the biggest keys to creating the effect of open space. Glass doors allow light to pass through them, which creates a large, open feeling in any space, while still maintaining the ability to create privacy. This makes glass barn doors particularly great for lofts or studio apartments because they create one large living space when opened, but can be closed to section the space off into smaller or separate rooms. Even in the largest of homes, barn doors can help separate off different sections of your home to save on energy costs and even create more private or intimate areas. Another reason barn doors are particularly great in small spaces is that they go all the way from the ceiling to the floor. The more height a feature adds to a room, the larger it makes the space appear.

3. Patio doors

Glass barn doors provide a superior alternative to traditional patio doors. Traditional sliding glass patio doors generally have one pane that slides and one pane that remains stationary. When you open the door, the sliding portion slides behind the stationary portion, so you only have half the size of the doorway to use as an entrance or exit. Barn doors made of glass, on the other hand, can slide all the way out to either side leaving the entire entryway free to use for exiting and entering. This can be particularly useful not just when entertaining, but also when moving large pieces of furniture into and out of your home.

4. Glass wall

Traditional patio doors are generally set into a wall and therefore offer a limited view of the outdoors. While French doors can add charm to a doorway, they also serve to even further mar the view. French doors can also open wide to offer access to the entire doorway just like barn doors, but they need a greater amount of space to open and close and still don't offer the same amount of unobstructed view as barn doors do. Barn doors, however, are generally installed on a track set into the ceiling. This means they can do double duty as both an entry point and a offer an entire unobstructed view of the outdoors from floor to ceiling. If you live in an area with a spectacular view from one side of our home, you can full take advantage of it by installing barn doors.

5. Shower enclosure

Bathrooms have always traditionally been small, cramped spaces. In the past, they generally had to be very large to give any impression of space. Now, with glass enclosures, even the smallest of bathrooms can have the feel of a much more luxurious oasis. Sliding shower doors are one of many types of barn doors that add both luxury and major functionality to your home. In addition, because the hardware for barn doors made of glass is located along the top of the door, it makes it easier to keep clean, as well as presenting a smooth, clean surface that makes your bathroom appear to be one giant, uninterrupted room.

6. Make your space multi-purpose

In the modern age, most homes are forgoing traditional dining rooms for more open living plans. While open floor plans are more conducive to one type of entertaining, formal dining rooms are conducive to another. Large, open floor plans create a more casual atmosphere where people can mingle and socialize at will. Dining rooms, on the other hand, create an entirely different type of environment. They are a type of "enforced" social situation in which guests have little choice but to talk to the person on either side of them. Dining rooms inherently create a more intimate atmosphere, which is often more conducive to building deeper, more intimate relationships. This why they are still a popular choice for families or for holidays.

Most homes these days do not have the space for both, so many homeowners have to choose between an open floor plan or a dining room. With sliding barn doors, however, you can have it all. You can open the doors to create a larger, more expansive space for casual entertaining, or close them to create a smaller, more intimate space for entertaining close family, friends or other guests. Sliding barn doors help you make the most of even the smallest of spaces.

No matter how large or small your space may be, from the smallest studio to the largest mansion, barn doors can help you get the most from your space. Not only are they a stunning feature in any space, but they are incredibly practical and versatile as well. Whether you want to create smaller areas in your large, wide open space or enjoy an expansive view from your bedroom in the morning, different types of barn doors can help you get the most from your home.

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