Door Repurposed As Garden Décor

My friend, Susie, is the very talented and creative landscape designer of Susanna Pagan Landscape Design. She brings a fresh approach to enhancing and beautifying landscapes for homes all over San Diego. I am a big fan of her work…and adore her as a person, she has such a sweet, fun and magnetic personality.  So, it was no surprise to me when she was chosen, out of 1,300 members of the San Diego Horticultural Society, to design their display garden this year for the Flower and Garden Show at the San Diego County Fair.

Article in our neighborhood paper, The Fountain, (to view online:

I was incredibly thrilled when Susanna asked if I would be interested in painting an old door for part of her garden display. She wanted to re-purpose an old door as artwork/décor to be displayed as the focal point at the end of a mosaic path. The salvaged white door she had obtained needed some love – a fresh coat of color and decorative painting to make it pop against all the bold and vivid colors she was planning for her design. Of course I jumped at the chance to work with her and to be a part of this project. I’ve always enjoyed the Flower and Garden Exhibit at the Fair, and was really excited to have the chance to showcase my work as part of the SDHS display. Susie allowed me to express myself and my style, giving me free reign of the design and colors. She shared her color palette, some of the plant choices and other decorative elements she wanted to incorporate…and let me take it from there. With her theme of a “celestial garden” in mind, and my colorful “bohemian” painting style inspired by Indian, Moroccan and Spanish decorative designs, I hand-painted (freehand) a floral motif dappled with small sprinkles of star-like elements.

The door before painting.

After applying a coat of turquoise paint I custom mixed myself with primer as the base, I then "sketched" the design onto the glass using white Kilz multi-surface primer.

Even the back of the door looks cool!

How cute is this succulent as a doorknob!

The finished door at the San Diego County Fair...I love how the blue marbles used in the mosaics coordinate with the blue "berries" or "pearls" in my painting...totally by coincidence!

Judging for the competitive exhibit took place earlier this week and the awards were announced yesterday. Susanna’s design for the San Diego Horticultural Society’s display took home EIGHT well-deserved awards!  Congratulations, Susie! If you’re in the San Diego area and are planning on visiting the San Diego County Fair (which opens today, June 8th), be sure to stop by and check out Susanna’s beautiful work. A silent auction will be held for the door on Monday night, with proceeds benefiting the San Diego Horticultural Society. For more information and photos of the exhibit, please visit (and like) the SP Gardens facebook page.

Susanna in front of her display with some of the awards. Isn't she adorable!

List of Awards for the SDHS

Excerpt from the SDHS newsletter


  1. […] for her was one of my favorite projects that year. Read about the hand-painted door and SP Gardens here. Thanks, Susie! It’s an honor to have my painting included in the beautiful gardens and […]

  2. Katie, I really enjoyed your website; and what a great article or your talented friend. I loved the door you did for her! stacy