Our door frame is an essential part of the house. Since its purpose is to hold the door, it must be strong enough and sturdy. Because of this, we ask, “How can I choose the best door frame?”
To choose the best door frame for your house, you must first consider the main material. Stones like marble, granite, and limestone are good choices. Then, you will have to decide the shape of your door frame together with the design you wish to incorporate.
We understand that this is easier said than done, and that is why this article contains complete descriptions of the material, as well as the classification of shapes and designs for door frames that will serve as your complete guide to making your dream home come true.
You might be wondering, “What is the importance of a door frame?” or “Do we really need to put the effort into building our door frames?”
The answer is a big YES. To protect your home from unwanted guests (they could be intruders, random animals, or even natural elements like a strong wind) you will need a strong door.
And if you want that door to stay up, you must invest in a stronger frame.
For this reason, we stuffed this article with know-how that tackles:
- the best materials for your door frame including their strengths, weaknesses, and design choices;
- the door frame’s classification by shapes and designs to complement your house’s architecture and;
- the advantages of stone door frames.
The material that we use in our door frame is crucial. It can either make or break your door frame, and we will make sure that it won’t be the latter. We have an article to describe the popular materials used for the door frame, please click “How Many Different Materials for Door Frames?” to read more if you are interested in it.
The door frame’s material should be hardwearing and suitable to the place where you will put it in terms of climate, weather, and exposure to other external elements.
For these reasons, we recommend a stone door frame because of its remarkable qualities that we will discuss in this section. Particularly, we have marble, granite, and limestone as the top choices.
We might all be familiar with marble for its patterns and unique color mixtures. But did you know that this stone is also one of the most durable materials you can use for your door frame?
Marble is a metamorphic rock that is created when limestone undergoes metamorphism. Metamorphism is when the structure and composition of a rock change due to heat, pressure, magma activity, and other natural processes within the earth.
Marble contains a lot of minerals such as iron oxides, graphite, pyrite, and quartz. But the main mineral that it has is calcite. The latter contains calcium carbonate (CaCO3) which is a major ingredient in building and construction.
Now that you know marble’s properties, let us explore the characteristics that make it perfect for your door frame.
The compressive strength determines the marble’s resistance to compression. This is administered by putting the material between two forces (top and bottom), and pressing on it until it fractures.
The standard for the building is that the stone should have a compressive strength of at least 100 newtons per square millimeter (N/mm2), to make sure that it will be tough. Marble has a compressive strength of 80 to 140 N/mm2, which is a good indicator of its firmness.
Resistance to Weather and External Elements
We already know that marble is a naturally hard material based on its compressive strength, and that is an advantage for your door frame.
- Heat. In terms of its temperature resistance such as that caused by the weather, a marble door frame will be able to handle extreme heat but will begin to weaken at 200 degrees Celsius or 329 degrees Fahrenheit.
However, you must not be alarmed as it is impossible that your marble door frame will be exposed to this temperature.
- Cold. Marble can withstand the cold, but since it is a porous stone, there is a risk of moisture penetrating it. For example, if snow touches your marble door frame in winter, water may be absorbed which can cause the stone to crack.
These are only worst-case scenarios, but marble is guaranteed to be strong enough to resist harsh weather conditions. Meaning, mild exposure to heat and cold will not damage your door frame.
However, marble is affected by ultraviolet (UV) exposure. The latter can fade this stone, so that is something that you should consider if you’re planning to use a marble door frame outdoors.
Design and Appearance
We know that you’re taking into consideration the physical attributes of your door frame, to make sure that it will give your place a beautiful ambiance.
With a marble door frame, you have a variety of choices for color. Its patterns are also unique in that no two slabs will have an identical pattern.
|Material||Description||Color and Pattern|
|Carrara Marble||originated from Carrara, Italy one of the most common types of marble||has a whitish-gray background with light-gray veins and can develop blue tones has the soft and feathery pattern|
|Statuary Marble||also called “Statuario” extracted in Italy’s Carrara region||has a white background thick and heavy dark-gray veins|
|Calacatta Marble||is quarried likewise in Carrara, Italy||has a bright white background has thick veins that can be dark gray, brown, beige, and gold|
|Emperador Marble||originated from Spain, but it is also quarried in other countries China and Turkey||Emperador Light has a light-brown background with cream-colored veins Emperador Dark- has a dark-brown background with light-brown veins|
|Crema Marfil Marble||usually quarried in Spain but is also found in China||has a creamy-beige background its veins are soft with colors ranging from yellow, white, and cinnamon/goldish beige|
Marble undergoes complex processes which are why the results in terms of appearance are unpredictable (in a good way). Aside from the colors mentioned above, marble may also have the following colors:
A marble door frame is definitely a wise choice because it is durable and elegant-looking. Marble can last for decades, especially when properly maintained.
The only downside for this stone door frame is we don’t recommend it to be placed outside because it is sensitive to UV exposure. The latter may fade your marble and therefore, it is best used as a door frame indoors.
Granite is one of the most common rocks that serves many purposes, and one of these is being a door frame.
It is an igneous rock that is formed through magma crystallization. The latter is where the minerals of the rock become solid at varying temperatures.
Granite contains minerals like quartz and feldspar. This stone is often used in building and construction as the concrete itself or as a concrete aggregate.
Let us dive into the specifics of granite to know why this stone is great to use as a door frame.
Granite has a compressive strength of 100 to 250 N/mm2, which impressively surpasses the 100 N/mm2 standards for building.
This indicates that this stone is strong enough to hold your door even if it’s a heavy one.
Resistance to Weather and External Elements
A granite door frame will be able to withstand wear and tear based on its resistance explained below.
- Heat. Granite is one of the most heat-resistant materials available in the market, mainly due to the natural manner that it is created. That’s why it is used for many purposes such as door frames.
Granite can resist a temperature of 249 degrees Celsius or 480 degrees Fahrenheit. But we are certain that your stone door frame will not be exposed to this amount of heat.
- Cold. The same with marble, granite is porous. It will be able to withstand freezing weather as long as it doesn’t absorb moisture.
This is not a problem since you can seal your granite to protect it from external elements
such as snow or rain.
Design and Appearance
The colors and patterns of granite are determined by the minerals that were mixed during its crystallization. With this, it can provide you with a variety of options to make your place look grand.
|White Granite||Andromeda White|
(white and beige with gray veins and black speckles)
|Black Granite||Black Galaxy|
(black with white and metallic-colored flecks)
|Blue Granite||Blue Pearl|
(dark gray and black background with blue blotches)
(brown, gray, and gold background with light and dark veins)
|Brown Granite||Coffee Brown|
A granite door frame is strong and will be able to withstand elements, contributing to its durability. We also recommend its usage both indoors and outdoors as the frame for your main door.
Limestone is abundant in the market and is likewise a great choice as a stone door frame.
It belongs to the sedimentary rock family and is rich in calcite (CaCO3) and calcium magnesium carbonate or dolomite [CaMg(CO3)2].
Both of these are used as concrete aggregates because their hardness and density add strength to the building.
In the upcoming sections, we have provided everything you need to know about limestone.
Limestone has a compressive strength that reaches 180 N/mm2 which surpasses the standard of 100 N/mm2.
It is the same with marble and granite; they are capable of giving you a strong door frame for your door of choice.
Resistance to Weather and External Elements
Limestone is one of the most durable materials that you can use as a door frame since it is impervious to weather damage.
- Heat. Limestone is created through natural processes that involve heat, which is why this stone is naturally resistant to heat. However, you must make sure that the heat will not reach 300 degrees Celsius, since this can be the start of damage.
- Cold. You don’t have to worry about freezing weather especially if your limestone door frame is sealed.
However, you must take care of limestone from solution weathering. This is a type of
chemical weathering in the form of acidic rainwater.
Don’t be discouraged from using this stone for your door frame. Solution weathering doesn’t happen in the blink of an eye. We still recommend limestone door frames since they are guaranteed to be best for both indoor and outdoor settings.
Design and Appearance
With limestone, you will have a wide array of options to choose from in terms of aesthetics. Its colors are soft and mild, giving that earthy look.
|White Limestone||Alba(uniform white background with grayish tone)|
|Beige Limestone||Moca Cream(uniform beige)|
|Gray Limestone||Peniche Dark(fairly consistent dark-gray background)|
These are the common colors of limestone, but it is also possible for this stone to be:
Limestone is a strong and durable door frame material that can also make your place look beautiful.
The downside of this stone is its susceptibility to solution weathering—specifically acidic rain—that can fade and dissolve limestone. But this doesn’t happen quickly and this material is still good to be placed indoors or outdoors.
After you have decided which material you’re going to use to make your door frame, it is now the time to decide how you want it to look.
In this section, we will talk about the styles of stone door frames through their possible shapes. We will also see the designs that you can incorporate with your frame to match it with the architecture of your house.
First things first: you must figure out what shape you want your door to be. We know it is tempting to try different looks for your door frame, but make sure that everything matches.
We listed four classifications of door frames by shape with information on where which part of the house they are commonly used.
- Standard. A standard door frame has the typical vertical rectangle shape. This is used in all settings, especially at home where we want it to be simple and cozy.
The usual size of a standard door frame is 82” (height) by 40” (width), but this is subject to change depending on your door’s size.
Using stone for your door frame will automatically decorate it because of the color variation and patterns. A gray limestone door frame with touches of brown will complement a lightly-colored interior.
- French door frame. Although this originated in the 17th century, we can incorporate this shape of a door frame into our modern houses.
This will have the size of two doors since there will be two openings, so the shape will become somewhat square. If you want to use this on your house’s exterior, granite will be a good choice. If indoors, then you can use marble.
- Door frame with glazing panels. The shape of the door frame itself can be a standard rectangle, but there will be built-in windows either on the sides or at the top and bottom.
The purpose of glazing is for the door frame to help retain the temperature indoors. It reflects heat away when warm and retains it when the weather is cold. This is good to use outdoors.
The door frame will be shaped to fit the corners where the door will be installed and there will be additional shaping for the panels. They can still be done with stone and in fact, we recommend this to ensure that the panels will be intact.
- Pocket door frame. While this door frame will have a standard or square shape, its sliding functionality requires precision.
You can use this type of frame indoors, especially if you don’t have enough space for a door that opens regularly.
A stone pocket door frame is preferable because too much sliding may take a toll on the other materials.
- Corner door frame. This type of door frame is made with the shape of a right angle. We often use this in the garage and storage rooms where there is limited space and there is no need for a large door.
Cut-To-Size with Simple Beveling or Groove
To bevel is to soften the edges—other than a right angle—usually for a smoother connection with another piece. To groove is also to shape the material to make it compatible with another. Beveling and grooving are both functional and aesthetic.
A cut-to-size door frame is exactly as it sounds; it is cut precisely at the shape of the space where the door will be placed. It is beveled or grooved to make sure that the door can be closed evenly and fluidly, as well as to add a bit of accent to the appearance.
Customized Shape and Specification
If you’re feeling creative and want to be unique with your home’s architecture, you can choose to customize the shape of your door frame.
Here are some examples of shapes that you can use as inspiration.
- Round door frame with or without glazing panels. A round door frame is classic and modern at the same time, and you can use it to make your house appear grand. You can also add glazing panels on the sides or at the top and bottom.
We recommend complementing this door frame with a round arch stone molding design or a gothic arch for a pointed trim to achieve that customized style.
- Gothic door frame. The gothic shape has no edges since it is round, but the top is pointed. This looks like a classic Middle Eastern cut, and it will look fancier if you use marble.
- Polygonal door frame. If you’re willing to go the extra mile with your door frame’s shape, choose among the polygons.
We frequently see door frames that are pentagon or hexagon in shape and they look futuristic and elegant at the same time. Your stone of choice in this design may be marble, granite, or limestone.
These are just some of our recommendations, and you can still come up with a door frame shape that you want.
Our number one tip is to ensure that you will have the door frame customized by skilled personnel to guarantee that they will get the shape perfectly and your door will attach to it seamlessly.
The design of a door frame is customized primarily for the casing, which is the trim around the door frame.
A casing (also called a trim or molding) is made to cover the gaps between the door frame—particularly the door jambs—and the plain wall, making the area look seamless.
This serves both the construction and decorative part of your home since this is where we can get creative with the stone molding designs.
A straight door frame molding is neat and simple, probably the most common design for houses. Below are your choices for this design.
- Minimal. From the word itself, this stone molding design is simple but sophisticated. This looks like a cleanly trimmed casing that is thin. We recommend a minimal design for homes with modern architecture, or for offices to achieve a sleek and corporate interior.
This will look good with marble because the clean trim around your door will be complemented by a glossy and beautiful color with unique patterns.
All types of marble will be suitable, but Emperador and Crema Marfil are two of our best choices.
- Craftsman. This style is seen in American homes that showcase the classic look of handcrafting. Craftsman door frame design is usually thicker, unlike the minimal one.
The head casing (the horizontal part on top of the frame) usually has a bit of a crown and is chunky. This stone molding design is perfect if you’re going for an antique-looking home that is cozy.
The craftsman door frame molding will look good with limestone because of the latter’s soft shades, but granite and marble can also be good choices.
- Colonial. This style is symmetrical and multi-paned. The design is classic and simple, with its cavetto (concave lines) being its main decorative detail. You can use this stone molding if your house has a low ceiling to give the illusion of spaciousness.
Marble is a great material for this style. A colonial marble molding design will give your house an elegant touch even with an average space.
The arch design for door frames is inspired by the Romans, who extensively used it in their infrastructures. They created arches from stone, usually marble.
This style never lost its place in architecture and it is still a trend today. Arch door frame designs are good for entrances, and there are several types to choose from.
- Round arch. This is the most common design of an arched door frame. The top is a perfect curve that will look fantastic when marble is used.
An arch marble molding design will give your house a classic and modern look at the same time, especially if you choose a dark-colored marble with light veins (but other colors are good choices as well).
- Flat arch. This type of molding design will have a flat curve at the top. This is used for accentuating the door frame, usually by intricate details on the arch itself.
All the stones that we have mentioned—marble, granite, limestone—can be carved. But marble is preferred by carvers. You can also use granite since it has strong colors which will look majestic paired with intricate details.
- Gothic arch. This door frame design is a round arch with a pointed top. Although it appears to be of Islamic architecture for big infrastructures, we frequently use it in houses.
- Hexagonal. From the word itself, this door frame design is arched with three sides on top (left, middle, and right). This molding design can be quite complex, but the output will be an aesthetically pleasing door frame.
There are other types of arches that we can say are closely related to each other such as the following:
|TYPE OF ARCH||OTHER VARIATIONS|
|Round||Oval ; Semicircle|
|Gothic||Cathedral ; Tudor|
|Hexagonal||Triangle ; Diagonal|
Remember, your arched door frame can be plain, patterned (from stone’s natural color and pattern), or carved, depending on your preferred design.
Columns were brought to the world by the Greeks, and the Romans followed. Made of marble, they are used to provide both structural support and decoration. Having said that, we can also use columns as a door frame design.
Let us look at the classical columns that we may use in our stone molding design.
- Door frame with Doric columns. This is the first ever type of column and also the first among the classical architectural orders. It can be considered the most durable one.
If you use this door frame design, the columns will be simple and will have no adornment. They are also thick, fluted, and baseless.
- Door frame with Ionic columns. This is the second column in the classical architectural orders, which has the signature volutes (scrolls) on top together with the egg-and-dart design.
This door frame column can be plain or fluted.
- Door frame with Corinthian columns. This is the third order in classical architecture, which is also the one that has the most adornment.
A door frame with Corinthian columns will be intricate with designs such as the acanthus leaves and flowers on top. They have slender flutes too.
- Door frame with Tuscan columns. This style of the column is of Roman origin but has a lot of similarities with the ancient Greek Doric.
The columns of your door frame will be plain and simple, causing it to appear very solid. They don’t have flutes or adornments as well, so they have that smooth and sleek look.
- Door frame with Composite columns. This type of column was also created in ancient Rome. It has a lot of similarities with the Ionic and Corinthian columns of the Greeks.
This door frame column will have a lot of intricate carvings—the acanthus leaves, flowers, volutes, plus the bells on top—and the shafts can be plain or fluted.
A pillar is a vertical structure used to support the roof or for an additional architectural touch. It is often interchanged with a column, but the latter’s purpose is to hold the weight above. They do have similarities since all pillars are columns!
There are different styles of square pillars for your door frame’s design which we enumerated below:
- Door frame with fluted square pillars
- Door frame with paneled square pillars
- Door frame with plain square pillars
A square pillar is easier to build than a round one, but it still provides an increased aesthetic appeal to interior and exterior door frames. Combine it with an arch stone molding design and your place will suddenly become elegant.
In this section, we collected relevant pictures of door frames made with different materials, shapes, and designs.
These may serve as your inspiration to give you different ideas for your home.
1. Round arch marble molding design
On a picturesque London street, India Mahdavi combines two neighboring houses to make a one-of-a-kind statement for renowned collector Maja Hoffmann.
From Architectural Digest designed by India Mahdavi
You may achieve this same design using Statuary marble with its rich white background and beautiful dark-gray veins. It is naturally glossy and is a perfect mixture of medieval and contemporary architecture.
2. Limestone door frame with paneled square pillars
This beige-colored limestone door frame with paneled square columns is a great idea if you’re planning a sophisticated yet minimal look on your exterior.
The fluted details of the capital and the simple entablature (uppermost part of the molding design) made this door frame look elegant.
We know limestone for its soft shades of colors. This a great choice for an exterior stone door frame since it can blend with any color outdoors (which sometimes clash with each other).
3. Stone door frame with overlapping marble colors
An eye-catching stone door frame with overlapping marble colors of white (Carrara), red (Rojo Levantina), and light brown (Emperador White or Crema Marfil). The shape is standard with a craftsman-style cut, but with even head casing.
From Dezeen in The Leystraat Project by Bovenbouw
Photographed by Filip Dujardin
This stone door frame molding design paired with a bright-colored interior will make your place look spacious and grand. You can also alternate the color combination of your choice since marble has a lot of shades.
4. Marble door frame with craftsman trim
This is the design of the door frame of the Massimo De Carlo Gallery in Milan, Italy. It is made with dark marble and cleanly shaped in a craftsman style.
From Binocle Italy photographed by Delfino Sisto Legnani e Marco Cappelletti
You can incorporate this style indoors using Emperador Dark marble for that elegant dark background with light veins. The stone molding design can be craftsman without a crown or minimal since both are cleanly cut into a rectangle (although the minimal style will be thinner)
5. Marble door frame molding in colonial design
This beautiful stone door frame is made with beige marble that fit the modern-Mediterranean style as well as the classic-inspired interior. The molding is also cut into a colonial style with the grooves as the main details.
There are many benefits that you can enjoy as a house owner when you opt to use a stone door frame instead of other materials.
We explained the strength of marble, granite, and limestone as materials together with their resistance, and the result will be a door frame that can withstand wear and tear over the years.
Marble, granite, and limestone have lower chances to be affected by heat and cold, and are not affected by corrosion and termites.
Statues and buildings made out of these natural stones last for decades, especially when properly taken care of. The same will be the case for your door frame if you choose one of these stones to be your main material.
The cost of marble, granite, and limestone may vary depending on the mine, market, and abundance of the stone in a specific place where you will purchase it. It can be expensive and it can also be budget-friendly.
What you must consider is when you choose these stones for your door frame, you will not have to worry about replacement and repairs, so you will save a lot of money at the end of the day.
3. Energy efficient
Whether you live in a place with hot or cold weather, stone door frames are perfect for your home.
They can maintain the temperature indoors and keep your house warm and cool. Your air conditioner or heater won’t have to work twice as much, allowing you to save electricity.
Marble, granite, and limestone door frames will upgrade your place beautifully with their natural patterns and colors. These door frames will complement any type of architectural design.
Choosing a door frame can be overwhelming, which is why we must consider these factors one by one: material, shape, and design.
The best material for your door frame is stone. It can be marble, granite, or limestone, and all of these are strong and durable, allowing them to last for a long time without the need for repairs and replacements.
With your door frame’s shape and stone molding design, the choices vary from classical to modern, or a mixture of both. You can also customize it to fit your architectural expectations.