Get a Handle on It

Everyone knows that moving into a new home can be extremely overwhelming. Well, add in my somewhat OCD tendencies (which flare up most when I’m in a new and unorganized space) and my head was seriously spinning!

I kept trying to put things away and find “homes” for all of our displaced belongings (for which there is certainly no lack of space!), but somehow it felt like I was barely accomplishing anything besides making mental lists all day long and cleaning and re-cleaning the kitchen!!

How was I EVER going to get anything done around here?!

After a few days of this routine, I decided to stop identifying the MAJOR projects I couldn’t quite tackle and find some smaller, more manageable tasks that could calm my nerves and make me feel productive.

My first task, was painting the powder room! (Post to follow!) I managed to complete it in two days – and I felt GREAT!! Being productive is a huge mood booster for me! Whenever I’m feeling overwhelmed, I just pop in the powder the room and remember how transformative a coat or two of paint can be.

Next, I chose to replace our mismatched door knobs.

We literally had 5 different styles of door knobs in our house! It drove me crazy when they mismatched in the hallways. Some of them didn’t work, and ALL of them had sloppy white  brush strokes from painting adventures of the past.

We updated our doorknobs in our NYC apartment, but then we only replaced 2 knobs. TWO! Still, it made a big impact at the time.

This time, we were looking at replacing 17 knobs (not including 3 exterior doors, 3 pocket doors, and 2 french doors). Bedrooms, closets, and bathrooms really add up fast!


I had my eye on an antique style knob I’d seen on one of my favorite blogs (Young House Love), but after re-reading their frustration installing the knobs, and a heap of Amazon reviews that questioned the quality of the knobs, I wasn’t so sure these Westlock Impresa knobs were the right choice.


Source: Amazon

While searching for a similar option, I came across this Schlage Addison Collection Andover  style. The backplate wasn’t as big and fancy, but the reviews were glowing, the installation was simple, and the price wasn’t as high as a lot of other options I’d seen.


Source: Amazon

As I added the doorknobs to my cart (counting and recounting my doors repeatedly) the honey app popped up to tell me they’d found a better price! This happened 3 times! Sometimes only saving me tax on each knob, but those numbers really added up and I appreciate any savings I can get!

Speaking of savings…I don’t know if you noticed but the knob pictured above retails for $30.91. That cost x 17 doors = over $500…which is A LOT for door knobs!!!

I’d previously budgeted $350 for new knobs, thinking that we couldn’t possibly have more than 10 or 11 doors in the new house! (Try 25 total Melissa…who knew?!)

Taking inspiration from Young House Love (yet again), I decided to use the most expensive knobs only on our passage doors (i.e. bedrooms, bathrooms, and the downstairs foyer-family room door). Basically, these are the doors that lock and provide entry to rooms or spaces you would walk into. I found a less expensive version of this knob for our closets, pantry, and master bathroom (since there were 3 knobs in there alone!).


Source: Amazon

The Schlage Andover Knob without the Addison plate lowered the price from $30.91 each to $19.99 each. Ten bucks per knob really added up and made the project feel possible!

I needed 8 Addison Andover Passage Knobs, and 9 Andover Closet Knobs:

  • 8 x 30.91 = 247.28
  • 9 x 19.99 = 159.92
  • TOTAL = $407.20

I was still $57 over my budget, and I’m REALLY trying to stick to it. If I’m over I’ll lose money for other furniture and projects in the house! I don’t like that option at all!

Then, Amazon reminded me that I could save $70 immediately by signing up for their credit card. Since we have Amazon Prime and buy our diapers (and everything else that I don’t have patience to take a toddler to the store for) from Amazon already – my husband was totally on board!! We even get 5% back from Amazon purchases made on the card. Done.

(I swear this isn’t an ad! I’m not that big time. I’m just excited about saving money and staying under budget!)

So, my grand total came to…337.20!! That’s 12 dollars under budget!! (Sometimes, it’s all about the little victories).

And THAT’S how we ended up with these beauties in our home!


Don’t mind the drippy paint job, chipped paint, and peeling paint. I’m a long way way from “finished” – but they sure do make me happy!!


I’ve chosen to leave the hinge hardware alone for now. I’m worried I’d have more problems than I could manage when trying to put the doors back up, and the mixed metals don’t bother me nearly as much as the mixed knobs.  After all, mixed metals are totally “in” right now, right?!



As with all of my “simple” projects, we hit a few snags. Once I figure out what color our doors and trim are painted, I need to do a lot of touch up. Special thanks to whoever only painted around the doorknobs, and also to the owner who thought the painting doors bright colors was a fun idea.


I guess it’s kind of fun, uncovering history like this. It made me wonder about the families who lived in the house before us, and all the memories made here. Even in 31 years, a lot has taken place here.

That said…here’s a friendly PSA:

Always remove your doorknobs when painting your doors!! Please, and thank you!

My latest project (though unfinished due to future painting requirements) makes me feel like the house is slowing becoming Ours. The newest jewelry on our doors is more than I’ll ever spend on jewelry to wear on my body, but it sure does calm my soul and make me smile every time I walk through the house. That’s pretty priceless to me!