Colorful doors are the rage on Instagram. Let Kansas City wow you with its plethora of bright, bronzed, arched, gritty, sacred, colorfully painted, historic, and instagrammable doors.
These 20 colorful doors are magnets for selfies and remodeling ideas. Follow this tour de door to the most colorful, gorgeous doors in five Kansas City neighborhoods, including the Brookside, the Library District, West Bottoms, Westside, and Midtown/Restaurant Row.
Grab your camera and let’s go!
Colorful Plaza and Brookside Doors
Brookside is home to an upscale shopping area called Crestwood where the colorful yellow Pear Tree door transports you to the European Pacific Groves. If you want to make an entrance into this European antique gold mine, wear your designer best and bring lots of green.
Just north of the Pear Tree, you’ll find the marvelous red doors of the Central United Methodist Church located on UMKC’s campus. Catholic churches painted their doors red to represent the blood of Christ. You needn’t pass through these colorful doors to be on holy ground. The Holy Ghost speaks to you just standing near the entrance.
Head further north to midtown to see a series of three brass doors that adorn the Kansas City Life building. Kansas City Life moved to this five-acre location in 1924. Each door tells a story of wisdom and market battles with carvings of owls and helmets. Drop by to draw your own interpretation.
For the door connoisseurs of Kansas City, I included a link, but not a picture, of the legendary doors of Mineral Hall and the 17 ft. gilded doors of the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art on the Plaza. These two doors have garnered their share of attention so I focused this post on the overlooked and never seen colorful doors of Kansas City.
Pear Tree Antiques | 303 E 55th St, Kansas City, MO 64113
Central United Methodist Church | 5144 Oak St, Kansas City, MO 64112
Kansas City Life | 3520 Broadway Blvd, Kansas City, MO 64111
Every door is another passage, another boundary we have to go beyond. Rumi
Historic Downtown Doors
Downtown Kansas City is home to dozens of buildings on the historic registry, including the Bunker Building located at 820 Baltimore Ave. The doors of the buildings downtown are less colorful but no less captivating. The Bunker is a mixture of styles including Gothic, Romanesque and Late Victorian.
Just around the corner from the Bunker, you’ll find the former New York Life Building, a 12-story jewel said to be the first highrise in Kansas City. A bronze eagle perches on this brownstone beauty and enhances the terra cotta entryway.
Just a block away, take in the Kansas City Public Library doors, at 14 W. 10th, which you can view here.
Across the street from the downtown library is the former New England Bank Building at 21 W. 10th St., which is now residential lofts. The main entrance features thirteen-foot bronze doors made from a single casting. Please go marvel at both buildings and their stately doors.
The Bunker | 820 Baltimore Ave., Kansas City, MO 64105
21 Ten Lofts | 21 W 10th St, Kansas City, MO 64105
Former New York Life Building | 20 W. 9th, Kansas City, MO 64108
If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door. Milton Berle
Get Colorful in the West Bottoms
In 1871 fur was traded, cows were slaughtered and meat was packed in the west bottoms in Kansas City. Today the west bottoms are called Stockyard District and they ooze with antique and specialty stores, bars, coffee shops and haunted houses.
Head to 1413 W. 11th to visit Hammerpress for machine stamped greeting cards, candles, lotions and cheeky t-shirts and gifts. You can’t miss its taxi-cab yellow front doors.
A few blocks over from Hammerpress you’ll find The Beast, which is rated one of the top 13th haunted houses in the nation. Its arched doorway entry beckons to swallow you whole and spit you out.
The Beast resides in what was the John Deere Plow Company building, which was built by Root & Siemens in 1898. There are probably a lot of skeletons buried somewhere in the Beast’s bowel.
Hammerpress | 1413 W. 11th St, Kansas City, MO 64101
The Beast | 1401 W. 13 St Suite B, Kansas City, MO 64102
The private entrance to a private home at 1417 W. 11th showcases the beauty of natural versus painted wood and the timeless beauty of leaded glass. Drool accordingly, then walk over to pillage for vintage finds and at Good Juju at 1420 W. 13th. You can’t miss Good JuJu’s colorful lime green garage door.
Good JuJu was voted Kansas City’s Best Antique and Vintage Store three different times and awarded one of the “Best Antique Stores Coast to Coast” by Flea Market Style magazine.
Private | 1417 W. 11th St., Kansas City, MO 64101
Good Juju | 1420 W. 13th Terrace, Kansas City, MO 64101
Weird doors open. People fall into things. David Sedaris
West Side Story and Westside Doors of Glory
Kansas City’s Westside went from crummy to coveted in the past few decades thanks to the views it renders sitting high on a hill overlooking the Missouri River and downtown skyline. William B. Floyd Residence built in 1881 at 1633 Madison Ave is on the historic registry as is the J.L. Chapman residence at 1614 Summit Street on the Westside.
Park your car and walk the bright, colorful neighborhood to take it all in. You can enjoy a meal at Blue Bird Bistro or a cup of coffee and crepe and Chez Elle. When and if Westside Local reopens, make a reservation pronto. It’s a Kansas City dining staple.
The owners of the homes at 1630 Madison and 1618 Madison will make you wish you were invited over for brunch just so you could turn the doorknob on their brown paneled and yellow lacquered doors. Walk the entire street along 17th to take in the gleaming green door of Thrive Pilates Studio and Maddie Rhodes art studio (not pictured).
Residence | 1630 Madison, Kansas City, MO 64108
Thrive Pilates Studio | 813 West 17th, KCMO 64108
Residence | 1618 Summit, Kansas City, MO 64108
Competing for Color of the Year
Red is the third most popular color people paint their front doors, according to a 2020 study by Zillow. Patriotic, bold, cheerful and welcoming, a red front door will put a smile on anyone’s face and create instant curb appeal.
Jet Black is the top selling door color with Charcoal Gray coming in at second place.
Blue is the fourth most popular choice for front doors. White Light Bookstore uses teal magnificently — which is in the blue color family but better. Fric and Frac Restaurant gets our fullstop attention with its colorful red arched door. And the Hispanic style building on the corner of Southwest Boulevard and Summit screams, “Ah Yi Yi Yi!”
White Light Bookstore | 1801 W. 39th, Kansas City, MO 64111
Fric and Frac | 1700 West 39th, Kansas City, MO 64111
Mystery Building | Corner of SW Boulevard and Summit Street, Kansas City, MO 64106
Two doors down they’re laughing and drinking and having a party. Dolly Parton
What was your favorite colorful door of the 20 above?
Favorite arched door?
What building or door will you visit first when you venture out in Kansas City?
If you need a a list of great tours to take in Kansas City, hit our tours link.