Paint your garage door, 50s retro renovation style

vintage 1955 garage doors ror ranch homes and colonial homes

vintage 1955 garage doors ror ranch homes and colonial homesThe winter is starting to feel like it will never end, here in western Massachusetts. I am not complaining – it’s very pretty, and the rush of spring is like no other. Even so, it feels like time for a BLAST OF COLOR from the 50s. How exuberant are these 1955 Crawford garage doors? To be sure, by ’55 a family’s car was nearly as important as their house, it seems. So following that logic, why wouldn’t their garage door deserve the royal treatment, too?

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  1. 50sPam says

    Some of the doors are simply about paint – starting with a paneled wood garage door. Others….well, it’s on my list to do more research!

  2. sharkeysday says

    What fabulous doors! I wonder if there’s anyway to find those anymore? Wouldn’t they be great in a snowy area?

    AND THE CAR! Yummy!

  3. Femme1 says

    You’ve inspired me to do something nifty like this with my garage door. I also might repeat the design on my front door. It has square panels with a circular accent in the center of each panel. Thanks! (Too bad it’s -5 degrees here on this sunny Sunday, or I’d get out there and start painting today.)

  4. Sumac Sue says

    How timely — I just heard a commercial this week for a local garage door company, pointing out that the garage door is often the biggest feature on the front of a house, yet something that people usually overlook in their decorating. Our garage door is white, just like the rest of the house trim — pretty bland. We definitely need some color.

  5. moddog70 says

    So cool. Makes me wonder what happen to the design world after the 70s? everything now tends to be so boreing and bland, thanks for the great the great pics.

  6. Femme1 says

    OK, I wasn’t sure where to post this, but I wanted to ask for some advice about exterior design, specifically fence design. We need to replace the privacy fence that surrounds our house. (We’re on a very busy corner, and I really like both the fence as a barrier to sights AND sounds.) The current fence is a natural cedar board-on-board style (looks good from both sides).

    Our house is a low ranch with extended overhanging eaves. I’ve landscaped the front with a slightly Japanese flavor and would like the fence to “go” with that, although I don’t think a bamboo fence would hold up too long in Indiana.

    I’m leaning toward a basketweave style and remember seeing that in my youth, probably more in the 60s, though.

    Any advice?

  7. monica says

    ive now been inspired to paint my garage door, another project, thanks alot,. the only problem would be the door has been replaced with a metal door would that look weird?

  8. jessica says

    I designed an 8ft wooden fence that my husband built last summer, and it turned out fabulous. It consists of a series of wooden posts with horizontal beams staggered on both sides, so that our neighbors have an equally nice view. We considered a “basket weave”, but decided that we wanted the design we chose instead. It could easily be done by weaving the boards. Good luck!

  9. Femme1 says

    I’d love to see as photo, Jessica. We’re having the fence done this summer, and although I’ve gotten an estimate for the basketweave fence, I’m still not sure if I’m going to go with that.

  10. says


    Since my wife and I have a ’58 design split level, half in red brick and half in wood, I repainted the house-body wood pale aqua, but the garage door white (like all the trim work), and hung aqua fabric inside the garage door windows. This way I can, should I ever choose to do so, change the color of the windows themselves.

    It’s an option. Some of those doors are sort of cool, some are just insane!

    Ronn at FUTURES Antiques

  11. says


    TYPO correction: “I repainted the house-body and garage door wood pale aqua (the trim work is white), and hung darker aqua fabric inside the garage door windows. This way I can, should I ever choose to do so, change the color of the windows themselves”.


    (I was thinking of earlier, sorry.)


  12. maggie says

    Some good garage door samples here:

    From the Westlake district south of San Francisco.
    An area of small MCM homes that we used to make fun of when I lived in San Fran in the ’70s, and that has now become very appreciated. They’re built vertically, rather than ranch-y, on narrow lots in the typically San Franciscan manor. There’s a book out about the nabe now, “Little Boxes”.

    Had original steel kitchens, too. Check this photo of one with a cool chrome strip running through the wall tile:

    Just searching “westlake” on Flickr yields oodles of goodies.

  13. atomicbowler-dave says

    Oh my, my ,my…
    How could I never have found this before!
    One of the features needed for the AtomicBowler Family Dream House is definitely a cool garage door, whether it comes that way or not! I have my mind’s eye on a horizontal diamond theme, personally.
    But what to put in front of it? In the drive?
    I am not a motorhome guy, just not.
    I never thought I’d say it in my life, but I’m sick of boats as owned items and sick of sailboat cruising as a vacation. Laura spent plenty of time on voyaging boats and doing coastal-cruising, too, so there is no conflict there. Besides, you can’t park the boat in the driveway and look cool.
    Yes, this IS still about my garage door…I need something to complete the tableau once a year before vacation time!
    Even ‘who-cares’ vintage cars are real expensive anymore, so I am thinking to the last on my list here for relative affordability and also looking to fuel economy as well (at least I owned a ’69 Caddy once in my life. Sigh…). Am thinking of a tiny Airstream trailer pulled by something totally goofy like an old AMC Matador or a Plymouth Valiant 4-door with an inline 6 and the push-button automatic trans! Any other suggestions?
    Just remember, it has to look COOL, I mean BOSS (!) in front of my garage door for a week before and a week after vacation time before going back to storage!

  14. says

    Those doors are great! So exuberant!

    And the T-bird is a nice touch. We have a ’55 t-bird in our garage, but I think the neighbors might be a little put out if we painted our garage door with such gusto.

  15. Jason says

    I think that the woman in the red dress is hot, Hot, HOt, HOT!! I just love how sexy a well dressed woman looks. It seems that woman’s clothes desingers of the time accentuated the bustline…and the gloves are great.

  16. JonathanJones says

    We recently purchased a ranch built in 1950. Updates have not been done to period, including a generic vinyl garage door with that all-to-generic “sun ray in clear window” pattern along the top panels.

    Would love to do something like this. Can anyone tell me how we would go about painting vinyl? Any special type of paint or pre-treatment required?


  17. Jeff Alterman says

    The 1950’s paint jobs on the garage doors are often quite tasteful. Too bad many of those garage doors have disappeared. However, if one has such a garage, one can perk it up with a colorful paint job.

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