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Bunkie Exterior Makeover: Bright Turquoise Front Door + Trim

I have a mini bunkie exterior makeover for you today!  That’s right: I’m finally making a little progress with the guesthouse.

Turquoise House TrimRetro Bunkie

Did you spot it in my post about my new dresses?  Or maybe you couldn’t take your eyes off the zebra print…?  I’m seriously considering ditching the DIY blogging gig and just becoming a fashion blogger because posing in front of this turquoise door might be my life’s calling.

Aqua Front Door

Kidding!  (Somewhere my former PhD supervisor is wondering what the heck happened.)

After asking you to weigh in on the pine walls last fall, I decided to take your advice and leave them natural (seeing Cassie’s master bedroom sealed the deal).  But I didn’t make any progress before winter hit, so I put off the whole building for another year.  Unwilling to let another year slip by without doing something out there, I cleaned out all of the furniture and stuff I was storing in there, gave the room a good scrub, evicted about three dozen horrifically large spiders, moved in the maple dresser my Mom lent (and eventually gave) me, and set up the queen bed from the townhouse guestroom.  And all of a sudden, it’s a proper guest room (see the bunkie bedroom here)!  It’s amazing how little I had to do to create a cozy space.  For the bunkie exterior makeover, all I needed was a little paint to help brighten some of the worn shabbiness.

Here’s what it looked like before:

Guesthouse Before

The sun really beats down on the guesthouse and the door was looking SO weathered and worn.  Plus the pale sage green stain slapped up on the trim by the former owner was flaking and peeling.

Guesthouse Before

Guesthouse Makeover

Peeling Paint

The wood was looking rough, so I grabbed some leftover paint and primer and got to work!  I sanded the trim and door first, which took a long time but I wanted to really scuff up what was left of the finish and also remove any flaking paint or stain.  Next I washed with TSP, rinsed well and let it dry for a couple of days.  Then I applied an exterior door and trim primer, which required 8 hours between coats and an overnight dry before painting.

Painting Trim

Two days later, I painted on some bright turquoise – the same color we used for our mid-century inspired front door!  We still have nearly a gallon and it seemed a waste not to use it!

Bunkie Exterior Makeover: Bright Turquoise Front Door + Trim

Aqua Trim

Turquoise House Exterior

Eames Chairs Outside

I have no plans to paint the exterior because I love the natural color of the wood siding with the pop of bright turquoise.  When the leave start to turn color, the turquoise will look incredible with the shades of gold and burnt orange Fall brings.  I am definitely not enamored with Fall like the rest of North America, so I’m really trying to find things to look forward to!

Bright Turquoise Front Door

Guesthouse Makeover

Turquoise Window Trim and Front Door

I just love how this bunkie makeover exterior turned out!  It’s a work in progress because I’ll probably refinish the little mini deck at some point and I definitely have to update that light fixture and maybe make use of the hook for a hanging plant, but already it looks a little better.  We really don’t have a lot of money to be fussing with this space – even though it needs a bathroom reno in a big way.  We’ll chip away at it but the mission is to spend as little as possible…

Turquoise Trim with Wood Siding

There’s still so much work to do in this bunkie exterior makeover, but I love that I no longer have to see the worn trim and door from the house.  Baby steps!

Bunkie Exterior Makeover



  1. Anonymous
    September 7, 2016 / 2:07 pm

    I love the pop of color against the brown wood:) any guests have to love staying there!Amy in MN

    • Tanya
      September 7, 2016 / 3:15 pm

      Thanks Amy! I'm hoping to make a little more progress before we have to close it up for the winter. I heard we're getting a really cold one here, according to the Farmer's Almanac – guessing your winter is probably going to be similar!

    • Anonymous
      September 8, 2016 / 2:55 pm

      Well, when you start taking reservations, let me know-ha! Yes, I'm hearing that re; Winter, but every winter seems cold to me—I know, some yrs are a little less cold or snowy but mostly it's always worse than I want:) I'll enjoy my new car w/ those heated seats + get to the gym to get thru it all!Amy

  2. Anonymous
    September 7, 2016 / 3:28 pm


    • Tanya from Dans le Lakehouse
      September 7, 2016 / 5:20 pm

      Thank you!

  3. Cassie Bustamante
    September 7, 2016 / 5:29 pm

    cutest guest house ever!

    • Tanya from Dans le Lakehouse
      September 8, 2016 / 4:13 am

      Thanks Cassie! And thanks for your help, way back when, when I was deciding to paint/keep the pine paneling inside. Thanks to you, I saved myself some painting, lol.

  4. Cassie Bustamante
    September 7, 2016 / 6:53 pm

    PS- thanks for the shout out! OXOX

  5. Jazmyn Strydom
    September 12, 2016 / 3:25 pm

    LOVE the turquoise! 😉 Reminds me of my own front door 🙂 I still laugh to myself when I bought the paint the lady who worked thought I was crazy and told me so… I get SO many compliments on it!

    • Tanya from Dans le Lakehouse
      September 12, 2016 / 6:57 pm

      I LOVE your front door – your whole house exterior is gorgeous and I'm insanely jealous. I'm not surprised you get compliments all the time. Why on earth would the paint salesperson give you grief for such a cheery color? It's not even that uncommon. I guess she didn't realize you're a design professional, lol.

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