How to Paint Closet Doors to Look Like Lockers

Shelley Frost

Closet doors painted to look like lockers add a fitting touch in any sports-themed room. A locker mural dresses up plain closet doors or covers up small blemishes on the wood. This closet painting project works best on wide closet doors such as the sliding style or bifold doors.

The wide surface allows you to paint a row of several lockers on the door. It is also best on flat-panel doors without ridges or raised sections. Add as much detail as you like to the locker mural itself.

  1. Remove the closet doors from the hinges for easier painting. You can paint them while they are hanging but it's easier to work with them when they are flat. Place them on sawhorses for an easy working height and stable surface.

  2. Sand the closet doors to prepare them for the paint. Sanding the doors helps the paint adhere to them. Wipe away the sawdust with a damp cloth so the paint can stick to the door.

  3. Brush on a thin layer of paint primer. This also helps prepare the surface and makes a better finish. Allow the primer to dry fully.

  4. Paint the primed closet door with the base paint color. Bright colors are popular choices for lockers. Consider the overall color scheme for the room when selecting the color. Add two to three thin coats of paint to get an even finish, allowing the door to dry between each coat.

  5. Measure the width of the door. Use that measurement to determine how wide you want each locker and how many lockers will fit across the door. If you have bifold closet doors, use each section as a separate locker for a natural division. For sliding doors, decide how to divide up each half.

  6. Apply painter's tape to create the lines to create each faux locker door. Place two strips of tape about a half inch apart. The two tape pieces basically create a stencil to create straight lines for the locker outlines. Paint with black or another contrasting color between the tape lines. Remove the tape.

  7. Paint a series of horizontal lines at the top and bottom of each locker door to create the vents. Paint on the locker handles and numbers on the lockers. If you have bifold doors, attach handles that resemble a locker handle. If you have sliding doors, handles will interfere with the door opening and closing.

  8. Allow all of the paint to dry before hanging the doors back on the closet.