9 Arched Doorway Ideas That Will Elevate Your Home

Designers say this centuries-old design trend is back in style. Here's how to incorporate it into your space.

arched doorway

Ryann Ford

Arched doorways are one of the latest home design trends, elevating rooms and spaces with gracious curves. But the trend isn't exactly new: Arches began with the ancient Romans and have been used in architecture and interiors for centuries. Their use throughout design history validates the arch as an enduring and timeless feature, favored as much for its structural reliability as for its aesthetic value.

Asma Florençon, founder and creative director of interior architecture and design studio Atelier Varenne, explains that interior design is as much about the internal architecture as it is about the furniture and decor you choose to add. "How a space makes you feel is not just about what you add to it, but about the structure itself," she says. "Things like ceiling height, windows, and doorways have a huge impact on the identity of a room."

Because arched doorways are a deviation from the traditional door shape, they impact the feel of a room and influence its design. Arched doorways capture attention by introducing an unexpected curve in an otherwise rectangular framework, and can introduce a softness to any room.

Ahead, Florençon and design experts share their best arched doorway ideas to help you elevate your own home.

teal wall with yellow painted arch

Courtesy of Atelier Varenne

1. Paint an Arched Doorway

Not all arched doorways require major construction work and a big budget, as Florençon demonstrates. "For this project, we actually wanted a hidden doorway (from the living room to the bedroom), but the budget did not allow for one," she says. Instead of hiding the door, Florençon diverted the focus elsewhere—toward a painted arch. "By slightly off-setting the luminous arch from the door, we accentuate its presence, and the door frame becomes secondary," she says.

blue bathroom with cream vanity

Courtesy of Pandora Taylor

2. Use an Arch to Connect an En Suite

One of the most natural uses for an arched doorway is to connect two spaces that don't necessarily need a door that shuts. In this en suite bathroom, "the opening was designed to let natural light in, as the bathroom had no windows," explains interior designer Pandora Taylor. "The soft lines of the arch are more decorative and create an interesting moment when you move between the two spaces, rather than feeling completely functional," she says. An arched doorway also allows you to achieve a taller opening—such as this one, that stretches almost to the ceiling—that proportionally doesn’t feel too big.

white room with black arched window

Courtesy of CATO Creative

3. Create an Arched Glass Doorway 

Open up a closed-plan layout with arched glass doors, such as in this space by CATO Creative, a London-based architectural and design practice. Here, glass crittall doors and windows create a striking contemporary design statement while filtering light into a narrow entranceway and amplifying the feeling of space. Glass doors allow light to flow around the house and create the feeling of an open-plan space without losing the benefits of a closed-plan layout.

white room with wood arched doors

Courtesy of Pierre-Louis Gerlier / Ercole Salinaro

4. Line an Arched Doorway with Wood

In this apartment, wooden arched doorways perforate a partition wall to create an extra room without compromising the feeling of open space. "The open arches create points of view, crossing and magnifying the frame," architect Pierre-Louis Gerlier says. "The arch is like a picture frame," he explains, likening it to the Renaissance paintings by great Italian artists that feature windows in the scene. Just like those paintings, these arches capture the viewer’s attention and extend their gaze into the next space. The wood frame establishes the arches as a defining feature, adding warmth and a natural feel to the clean white living room.

5. Introduce an Arched Pocket Door

Update a pocket door with an arched architrave. Pocket doors are a popular architectural element thanks to their space-saving and versatile qualities. Enjoy the full breadth of the space without interrupting the view line or compromising on acoustic separation and privacy when you need it. An arched frame adds a further aesthetic dimension to the room and makes a feature of the door when shut.

stone house with arched doorway

Julie Soefer

6. Design an Arched Entryway

Give your home curb appeal with an arched front door or entryway. "Arched doorways are unusual enough that they draw our attention much more than a regular doorway," Florençon says. Curved architectural features, like arched doorways and arched windows, create a satisfying contrast to rectilinear architectural structures and give a subtle nod to antiquity.

wood arches in room

Courtesy of Pierre-Louis Gerlier / Ercole Salinaro

7. Use Arched Doorways As Space Dividers

The double-arched doorway serves a dual purpose in this design by Gerlier. The wood archways divide an open-plan space, providing two distinct rooms, while concealing structural constraints. The homeowner originally wanted to open up this entire area to create one room, but Gerlier suggested using a sculptural wall with arches to zone the space and create depth. "It's like in theatre, you create different layers of scenery with a foreground and a background to create depth," he explains. "The structure also had to be mapped out, and rather than simply casing the posts, I put them in the scene."

8. Add a Wide Arched Doorway

Maximize natural light with a wide arched doorway. The wider the doorway, the more open a space will become, allowing natural light to flow around the home. Wide arched doorways also create the illusion of a large room and can add a bit of drama. "I use arched doorways often as open (doorless) connections between two spaces," Florençon says. "It creates a softness and fluidity while still having a formal presence."

white arched doors with storage

Courtesy of Pierre-Louis Gerlier / Ercole Salinaro

9. Create Storage Potential

In this Parisian apartment, arched doorways add aesthetic value and serve a functional purpose. "I wanted to create a center of gravity in the heart of the house with these cupboards surrounding the stairwell," Gerlier says. The arched doorways create a design focal point while concealing cupboard storage—a clever and creative way to merge form and function.

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