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The Benefits of Custom Woodworking Versus Just Another Boring Door: An Interview with Ryan Baird of Golden Rule Designs

By Ryan Baird

Tell us a little bit about your company and the services you offer.

Golden Rule Designs is a custom design and woodworking business specializing in solid wood doors, furniture, cabinetry, pergolas, and screen porches, but we also take on many other jobs in the custom woodworking field. Golden Rule Designs was founded in 2004 and the name derives from my common use of the Phi Ratio in my design.

What are some of the most common reasons that homeowners want custom-made doors over ready-made ones?

The most common reasons are quality, craftsmanship, longevity, and more flexibility in design and features. Our doors are built from solid wood, hand picked and carefully milled, and then constructed using true mortise and tenon joinery with the same care that we put into our custom pieces of furniture. Even the jambs and sills are mortise and tenoned together as well as screwed to assure a strong and sturdy frame for the door to hang from. Going custom also offers many more options in material choice, finish, glass, aesthetic, hardware and more, not to mention we can make custom screen and storm doors to match your door perfectly.

What are some of the basic choices that people will need to make for their new custom-wood door?

The most basic choices people need to make when beginning the process of getting a custom door is first what their budget is. Custom doors can range a lot in price so having an idea of what they hope to spend will help decipher much of what will be done with the design, material choice, hardware and finish. The next most important choice is what aesthetic they're interested in. This will help with the designing as well as help with the choice glass, hardware and finish. There are many options and features to choose from when ordering your dream door but these will get you through the bulk of it.

What are a few of the most popular styles and features that people ask for?

The most common style people ask for is the traditional New England door with profiled stiles and rails and raised panels. Dutch doors and the use of decorative glass such as bullseye glass and restoration glass are also common requests. The next most requested doors are usually something with unique features such as a different look on each side of the door or doors that function and move in complicated ways requiring more engineering in the design, but while still using wood.

Can you share two or three the most unique or unusual types of doors that you've built for homeowners?

We've done some doors that fit interesting shaped openings and fold and open in unique ways as well as some gigantic oversized doors. Some of the coolest doors we've done have been exact replicas of historical doors for some of Rhode Island's amazing historical homes.

What's the best way for people to contact you and your company?

The best way to contact Golden Rule Designs is by email (ryan@goldenruledesigns.com) or by telephone (401-575-7771), where you can schedule an appointment to come and meet with us.

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