Once a kindergarten teacher, now your go-to guide for all things DIY. My passion for teaching didn't stop when I left the classroom - I merely switched from ABCs to DIYs. I've learned a lot from transforming my own home from scratch, and now I'm here to pass on that knowledge to you.
A little over a year ago I stumbled upon a wooden doormat at Target. I thought it would be the perfect doormat to layer on a rug at my front door. Little did I know I would end up buying two more for our patio door and my office door and gifting one to a family member. It’s the perfect texture and color to pair with literally any rug or to use on its own.
But sadly this particular wooden doormat has never been available online. So you have to cross your fingers to find it in store. And now it appears that it has been discontinued. Once the Targets in my area sold out of it, it was never restocked. That was a year ago. I have heard that it can still be found in some Targets. But that doesn’t help all of us who still want to get our hands on one.
So guess what? I’m showing you today how you can build the exact wooden doormat where you can even pick our own stain. This way we can all have the chance to place one of these doormats at our front door. Here’s how to build one of your own:
The great thing about this DIY wooden doormat is that you can make it any size that you want. For this tutorial, I used the same measurements as the doormat I purchased at Target. You’ll cut your 1 x 2 pine according to the measurements shown below using the miter saw. Take your time with this step! It’s important that all of the pieces line up nicely and without gaps. When in doubt, cut the pieces a hair too long so you can sand or cut it down to the exact size.
Now, to get the look of a gap going along the sides of the middle pieces, you’ll have to route the ends. If you don’t have a router you can still piece this doormat together as is but you won’t have the gaps on the side. Which is fine! Refer to the image below with what it would look like without routing the ends.
With my measurements, there will be about a quarter of an inch gap between each of the middle pieces. So you’ll want to set your router bit so that it only takes off a quarter of an inch from the ends. This will ensure that all the gaps will be the same width. You’ll also want to set the height of your router bit to a little more than a quarter of an inch as well. You don’t want to go too deep because of the pocket holes you’ll be drilling on the back.
Using the picture below as a guide, create a pocket hole on the back of the wood pieces. The only pieces that won’t get a pocket hole are the top and bottom piece. Pay close attention to the inner sides of the middle pieces. I staggered the pocket holes so they won’t run into each other when inserting the screws. This will allow the screws to bypass one another. Another option to piece this doormat together is by using a brad nailer but it won’t be as sturdy and strong when using pocket holes and screws.
Now that all of the cutting and drilling is done, sand each piece of wood on all sides. You’ll start with a 120 grit sandpaper to remove the top layer to expose the natural wood. Follow up by using a 220 grit sandpaper for that really smooth finish. Wipe your pieces of wood down using a tack cloth to remove all of the sanding dust.
Before applying the stain, you’ll want to pre-condition your wood to help prevent blotches and uneven stain color. For pine, I’ll be using water as my pre-conditioner. It opens the grain of the wood to accept the stain and I’ve had great results with it!. Get a bowl of water and soak a rag. Wring it out so that it isn’t dripping wet but you also don’t want it damp. Rub the rag on all the sides making sure to get everywhere. Do this with all of the pieces and allow them to fully dry.
Once dry, apply your stain. You’ll want to apply the stain going in the same direction as the grain. I love the look Flagstone by Varathane. It gives the wood a little warmth and color while keeping it light and neutral. You’ll also want to take the time to seal your wood especially if it is going to be exposed to harsh outdoor elements. Seal it using polyurethane which will help seal it and make it waterproof.
Now it’s the moment you’ve been waiting for: piecing everything together! You’ll start with the frame by screwing the side pieces into the top and bottom piece. Make sure the edges are all flush. Then find the center of the top and bottom piece and the middle of the piece you’re placing in the middle of the doormat. Lines those up and attach the middle piece of wood. Refer to the image below.
Now to attach all of the middle pieces! This part took a little bit of time and patience because you want the exact same measurement between each board so all the gaps are the same and level. If you can find a spacer that’s a quarter of an inch, that will be your best way to attach them one at a time. I couldn’t find one, so I measure out the quarter of an inch gaps and marked where I needed the bottom of each wood piece to go.
Screw them in one at a time. Don’t tighten the screws all the way until you have all the pieces attached. This will help ensure that all the pieces will fit. If you encounter a wooden piece that won’t fit, you can sand a little bit off of the ends until it does.
To finish the doormat, you’ll screw an anti-skid pad on the bottom of each corner. This will not only help prevent it from slipping but will also lift the doormat up to allow the water to drain out. And for extra support, attach two thin pieces of wood along the back. Make sure the piece that you’re using is not as thick as your anti-skid pads.
You’re officially done and can now enjoy your new wooden doormat! I love how you can truly make it a custom doormat by choosing the stain color and the size you’d like it to be. Can you imagine a larger one sitting in front of double doors? It would be so pretty! If you try this project, I’d love for you to share with me! Tag me on social media or you can even send me an email. Happy building!
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