Pack a lot of style and utility to one salvage detect if you reinvent reclaimed French doors since a folding shoji screen that captures memories and delivers messages. The Japanese perfected the art of this folding screen and also designed a spare, paper-backed wood or wood panel that slid on a track to shut open rooms — or even hexagonal to one or more screens as a freestanding room divider. Just a little creativity takes the concept one step further with new and vintage materials.
Hunt salvage depots until you find two sets of narrow French doors without their glass. The sets don’t need to match, but they are easier to work with if they are roughly the exact same width and height: 24 inches per door is a good maximum width. Decide which set is going to be the center of your folding screen and split the other set in two to flank doors. Remove all of the hardware.
Strip, sand and stain the doors, distress and whitewash them, or sand, prime and paint them in high-gloss tooth, based upon your decor. Shabby chic-style doors are extremely flexible, but your aesthetic might dictate a more formal appearance. When the doors are refinished, lay them flat to a dropcloth, “front” side facing down.
Cut a 1/4-inch plywood panel to fit the back of each door. The panels may be slightly narrower and shorter than the door, but they should generously cover the majority of the outer door frame on all sides. Prime one facet of the plywood panels and then cover that with chalkboard paint. Allow the paint dry.
Turn the plywood panels chalkboard-side down, unroll the pressed cork and cut a piece of cork to fit each panel. Staple the cork in position around the borders of the panels.
Put the cork-lined chalkboard panels, cork-side down, on the corners of their doors and mark the plywood at several points along the surface, sides and bottom of the door frames so you can drill holes for wood screws. Drill the holes straight through the plywood and cork, and to the door frames.
Attach all four screens together with two-way hinges, utilizing a bottom and top hinge between each door. Screw the plywood backing into the doors.
Cut strips of suede or felt fabric to adhesive on the bottom of the door frames to offer some traction and protect your flooring. When the glue dries, stand your shoji-corkboard-chalkboard screen up and angle the doors to create it freestanding.