The changing fashion of front doors over the years

From tiny timber cottage doors to modern composites, there’s a lot to learn about doors and how over time they have adapted to suit our everchanging style and needs.

From tiny timber cottage doors to modern composites, there’s a lot to learn about doors and how over time they have adapted to suit our everchanging style and needs.

Back in the early 19th Century when the romantic gothic architectural style dominated the UK, elaborate wood carvings and ornate handles were the norm for the upper-class, as the entrance to the home gave an insight into the wealth and style of the family that lived there. Today when it comes to choosing a new front door, we are a little more interested in pinning our front door inspiration on our Pinterest board, flicking through Good Housekeeping Magazine, and envying the new composite door that next-door-but-one have had installed...

A beautiful design is still important but even more so, the robustness and security, as keeping our family and belongings safe and secure is a top priority.

Advancements in manufacturing technology have created the most beautiful, robust, yet secure doors to date. So let’s take a look back at those early doors and discover where in time things started to change to create the doors we have today…


Front door from the 1900s

 Photograph: Alex Reay/Jackson-Stops

Here is Devisdale House, a gothic revival villa in Greater Manchester which gives us a little insight into how a front door might have looked in the Victorian era.  


Front Door Fashion 1920s

Photograph: Foxtons

Fast forward twenty or so years, there was a boom in house building and mock Tudor houses and cottage style houses were built in suburban areas. Of course, the style of front doors also changed to mirror the architectural style of the home.


Front door fashion in the 1940s


After the second World War, there was a boom in houses and the government pledged to build thousands of council homes across the country. Doors were simple and functional.


Front Door in a 1960s designed home

Photograph: Wowhaus

A wonderful era for manufacturing as our parent company VEKA (then VekaPlast) was founded in Germany in 1969. However, it wasn’t until 1974 that VEKA started producing front doors. The swinging sixties also saw the architectural style of homes modernise, yet draughty timber doors were still the norm.


Front Door from the 1980s

As property prices rose, credit cards became the norm and we became interested in replacing our doors. Sadly, the reputation of installers was tarnished by shoddy installations and hard selling sales people. So in 1996 Independent Network was born as a group of proud, hard-working installers, using VEKA products came together to form an organisation proving commitment to quality, craftsmanship and service.


Front Door Fashion in the 2000s

In 1989 VEKA launched the woodgrain effect profile (we have 31 colours today in our Variations range!) and by 2010 thousands of homeowners were stepping up their kerb appeal with attractive colourful front doors.


2021 Fashionable VEKA Ecowarm Front Door

Photograph: I.N. member EcoWarm Windows

Fast forward 11 years and home is more important than ever. Contemporary designs are dominating our industry and our installers are busy creating more dream entrances than ever before! Here is a composite door using VEKA outerframe installed by one of our members.

If you’re searching for a new door, the options are endless when it comes to uPVC. If you’re looking for a traditional design, our cleverly designed woodgrains and panels mirror the look of timber doors with all the modern benefits of uPVC whilst our smooth colours and multiple glazing options create the perfect contemporary entrance. 

Contact your local Independent Network installer for advice and a quotation.

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