Frosted Glass Bathroom Barn Door (From Epic Fail to Success)

I don’t talk about my failed attempts at projects often but they do happen, more times than I care to admit. Recently I had one of these big oops moments when I was trying to add a bit of privacy to our glass bathroom barn door with frosted glass spray.

I’ve used this spray before and loved the results so I was confident it would work for this project. I was so confident that I decided to do the project on a Facebook Live. It turned out to be a huge failure. What’s worse is that it failed in front of the 2 whole people that watched it live. ๐Ÿ˜‰

small powder room with a white painted barn door with frosted glass window

If you saw my last post with the powder room reveal, here, then you saw our barn door. We were lucky enough to find it on the curb when we lived in Illinois. I’ve been hanging onto it in the hopes of using it for a special project and our new powder room was the perfect place for it. 

The door obviously has glass which was both good and bad. It’s good because it lets light in and you don’t feel like your in a little box when the door is closed. It’s bad because…well, it’s glass. Nobody wants to be peeped at when they’re in the bathroom, so we had to try to fix it.

old white door propped up in opening to powder room

I thought about using window film but I went with what I had, which was frosted glass spray. Like I said, I’ve used it before and knew how quick and easy it is to do so I was confident it would work. To add a bit of interest, because every powder room door needs interest, I decided to create a frame with tape.

Before we get to the big fail, let’s talk about what I did to prep the door. First I painted the front and back of the door. Then I scraped the window and cleaned it well. You want to make sure you get every speck of paint off or it will show up when you frost it.

an old wooden door and white door hung with barn door hardware

Once it was clean it was time to apply the tape. My first thought was to go thin so I used 1/4 inch painter’s tape. We measured 1 inch in from the edge of the window, all the way around, and applied the tape. 

To secure the tape, and to prevent seepage, I quickly went over it with a spoon. I didn’t want the oils from my hands getting all over the glass and interfering with the spray so I used the spoon trick on the tape.

adding painter's tape to a bathroom door window and smoothing it out with a spoon

After the tape was on we papered and taped the rest of the door and took it outside to spray. This stuff is pretty toxic so I suggest painting outside. If you must do it inside, make sure you have an open window and lots of ventilation.

Once we were set, hubs pushed play and we made our Facebook Live video. I gave the door a good 3 or 4 coats on the video, letting each coat dry in between. We stopped recording after a few coats and I waited for the spray to dry so I could remove the tape.

I pulled the tape off and the dried spray came with it. UGH! I’ve never seen that happen in all the times that I’ve used it. 

We left it dry a little longer and tried again. Nope…the dried spray was coming off in sheets. I even tried lightly scoring along the tape with a razor but nothing worked. 

We made the decision to pull all the tape off and scrape the window clean. I didn’t want to rush into another mistake so I let the door sit overnight to think on it.

My first thought was to do a test so I scrounged up a scrap piece of glass from the basement. On the scrap glass I took a piece of 1/4″ tape and a piece of 1″ painter’s tape and sprayed the same amount of coats over each piece. I left it sit to dry overnight. The next day the 1/4″ piece pulled the spray off with it, just like it did on my door. The 1″ piece came off clean. 

I also tried to pull the tape off when the spray wasn’t completely dry. That was a total disaster with both the 1/4″ and 1″ tape.  

So the verdict was to use the 1″ tape.

We prepared the door…again…and gave it a another shot. 

old white door taped up with painter's tape and ready for frosted glass spray paint

I couldn’t leave a failed project on Facebook, so I had to do another Live video and explain what happened and what I did to fix it.

Thankfully it all worked out. I did wait a little longer before I pulled the tape off, and took my time, but it all came off without incident. 

a window in a door taped up with painter's tape with a couple coats of frosted spray paint

My only conclusion is that the tape was too thin and I may have done too many coats (?). The second time around I only did 3 light coats to be safe and it covered well.  

old white door with window taped with painter's tape and frosted

black iron door handle on a glass bathroom barn door

It wasn’t easy to go back on video to announce that my project was a fail but I’m glad it all worked out in the end. Failed projects are just part of DIY. Well, part of DIY in our house anyway. ๐Ÿ˜‰

a white door with frosted glass hanging on barn door hardware

You can check out my videos from our Facebook Lives. The blue shirt is from day 1 and the red shirt is day 2. These were really live so there was no editing done, which means you get to see the hubs’ thumb during all of video #2. I also want to point out that these are my working duds and hair. DIY is not pretty, ya’ll. ๐Ÿ˜‰



pin this for later graphicfrosted glass bathroom door and window taped with painter's tape and frosted

You can also find me at Between Naps on the PorchWorthing CourtSavvy Southern StyleFrench Country Cottage

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  1. Sandra
    Monday,February 26, 2018 / 8:34 am

    Oh no! ๐Ÿ˜ฎ But you kept it real and for that I applaud you ๐Ÿค— Because you know, in real life, many of our diy donโ€™t always turn out perfect the first time. But we persevere!

    • Kristi
      Tuesday,February 27, 2018 / 1:04 am

      Yes, we do persevere Sandra! I’m just happy that it all worked out the second time around. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  2. Monday,February 26, 2018 / 9:15 am

    HI Kristi I LOVE that you showed, filmed the fail! That’s real life! Love the results! Thank you for teaching us how to do it! laura

    • Kristi
      Tuesday,February 27, 2018 / 1:09 am

      Thanks so much Laura! I don’t so much mind the fail but filming it is another story. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  3. Monday,February 26, 2018 / 9:16 am

    PS Kristi where did you get the hardware for the door? Love it! laura

    • Kristi
      Tuesday,February 27, 2018 / 1:12 am

      The doors had holes from old hardware so we had to get custom made handles. I used a seller on Etsy and, although they’re beautiful, I had a nightmare of a time dealing with him so I can’t recommend them. There were several other businesses listed though. Sorry. Not much help.

  4. Debbie H
    Monday,February 26, 2018 / 9:45 am

    So happy you showed the fail. To many people in videos and blogs hide the mistakes. By doing so they reinforce our perfection or nothing attitudes. I would have been number three if I knew you were live on YouTube, Are you going to do more Youtubes?
    Have a great week and keep those DIYs coming.

    • Kristi
      Tuesday,February 27, 2018 / 1:16 am

      I don’t mind sharing my failures, it’s the only way you learn. It was a little embarrassing failing on video though. Still trying to get used to being on camera. It seems that blogging is moving toward video more and more so, yes, I will do more. I do like that they give a different perspective of a space or project.

      Thanks so much for watching! ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Pat M.
    Monday,February 26, 2018 / 10:17 am

    We’re all so happy to see you’re just like us. We truly thought you were perfect and never made mistakes. ๐Ÿ™‚
    Keep up the great work. You are an inspiration.

    • Pat M.
      Monday,February 26, 2018 / 10:20 am

      The above comment should have indicated a happy face emoji after the first sentence. I was trying to be funny and the emoji didn’t take. I love what you do – mistakes and all.

      • Kristi
        Tuesday,February 27, 2018 / 1:19 am

        No worries! I knew exactly what you meant. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Kristi
      Tuesday,February 27, 2018 / 1:18 am

      Certainly not perfect, although the hubs may say that I am. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Totally kidding.

      Thanks so much for watching Pat, and for your support. ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Tuesday,March 13, 2018 / 10:09 pm

    Wow, the door looks gorgeous! Love the frosted glass.

    • Kristi
      Thursday,March 15, 2018 / 2:25 am

      Thanks so much Maria! It took a failed attempt to get it right but I’m happy with the way it turned out. ๐Ÿ™‚

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