The House Milk Kitchen Project: Sliding Doors Part 1

As you know, I completely gutted my kitchen in October and now it’s almost done. I know, I KNOW *groan* – it’s the project that never ends!!!

Everything is in place… except one big thing: the sliding doors. We completely overlooked them when renovating the kitchen, probably because we knew it was a bigger job than we were ready to tackle alone. Then we got a call from the marketing department at Architectural Digest on behalf of Marvin Windows & Doors – they offered to work with us to replace them! Oh happy day!

Just an example of some of the gorgeous sliding doors from Marvin. Photo courtesy of Marvin Windows & Doors.

As I said, we spent so much time renovating our kitchen that we completely ignored the elephant in the room: the giant wall of glass we use multiple times a day. Even after ripping the kitchen down to the studs, we neglected to replace the sliders and now, against the beautiful new high-end kitchen appliances, materials, and fixtures, the sliders simply appear ugly and worn, begging to fit in with the rest of the design.

Here are the doors as they are right now:

These doors are obviously not the original doors, but we’re pretty sure that the kitchen had some sort of exterior door because the grill is directly outside. What we have there now is a simple pair of vinyl sliders probably purchased off the shelf of a home improvement store, perfectly acceptable and nice, but they do have some drawbacks. First, because our house is uniquely designed, standard items purchased at big box stores don’t always fit right or look appropriate.

Secondly, the screens don’t meet in the middle and stop, they actually slide all over the place, which is frustrating. One of the doors sticks so it’s hard to open them both with minimal effort. One of the screens has a giant hole, too.

Also aesthetically, from the exterior, the casing isn’t the nicest both around the door and at the threshold, where it meets the patio.

Beyond aesthetics and function, we’re also concerned about energy efficiency, so having the Marvin professionals install the doors will ensure that we’ve done just about everything we can to make these doors efficient.

After talking further with Marvin and the marketing department at Architectural Digest, we decided to do some “before” and “after” videos. Yes, videos! And you can see my mug in the May issue of Architectural Digest in the latest Marvin promotion.

Overall, I’m really excited to get started on this project with the Marvin team. I’m nervous – I’ve never done a video like this before and I’m pretty camera shy. It should be quite an adventure!

You can follow along with the renovation right here on Design Milk, on or on

Jaime Derringer, Founder + Executive Editor of Design Milk, is a Jersey girl living in SoCal. She dreams about funky, artistic jewelry + having enough free time to enjoy some of her favorite things—running, reading, making music, and drawing.