Bi-fold door ideas – 20 clever external and internal designs for your patio (or closet)

The best bi-fold door ideas can keep your closet in check and take your extension or patio to the next level.

doors by Anglian Home Improvements
(Image credit: Anglian Home Improvements)

The best bi-fold door ideas are stunning to say the least and sure to bring much needed functionality to your home also. One of the most popular types of doors around nowadays, whether you're installing yours as part of a house extension, externally to open up onto a patio, to corner off your closet or to conceal your pantry, it's a divine look. 

Coming in a wide range of versatile customizable and bespoke designs, bi-folding doors work brilliantly externally to create a link between the inside and outside, and make a sound internal partition doors for bedrooms, open plan kitchen spaces and other areas of the home that you'd like to feel more accessible.

'Bi-fold doors in particular have taken centre stage this year, with many home owners opting for the design as they can open up living spaces and create indoor/outdoor living areas. Bi-folds often take up less space than other more traditional door types and because of this are a popular addition to any modern home.' Says Marcus O’Boyle, Genesis Collections’ Business Development Manager.

1. Update your conservatory with a graphic bi-fold design 

doors by Architectural Bronze Casements

(Image credit: Architectural Bronze Casements)

Conservatories and orangeries are the first candidates for bi-folding doors, and with good reason. Designed to bring the garden indoors visually, these rooms really benefit from being as transparent as possible. Adding some interesting with metal casing will introduce an elegant, graphic dimension to the room. 

This conservatory has been kitted out with doors by Architectural Bronze Casements

2. Maximise natural light in a dark room 

Scotts of Thrapston bi-fold doors

(Image credit: Scotts of Thrapston)

Have a dark kitchen that faces a small walled backyard or patio space? Introducing bi-folding patio doors will help maximise space – and natural light – even enhancing those patio ideas leading onto your garden. Choose a painted design in white or ivory for a delicate and weightless look.

This kitchen has been fitted with Engineered hardwood folding doors finished in a microporous paint by Scotts of Thrapston.

3. Go minimalist in a contemporary interior 

XP Slide Panoramic doors from Express Bi-Folding Doors

XP Slide Panoramic doors from Express Bi-Folding Doors

(Image credit: Express Bi-Folding Doors)

Let a panoramic view take hold with a pared back bi-fold patio door frame that will help enhance the landscape around your home.

4. Keep it simple

Blue House by De Rosee Sa

(Image credit: De Rosee Sa/Alex James Photography)

If you like your interior to be streamlined and serene, it’s important to get your doors right too. Avoid overly ornate bi-fold patio door design when part of a fairly modern house extension, opting instead for a simple, contrasting frame. 

This contemporary living room design is by De Rosee Sa

5. Introduce bi-folding doors on a balcony or terrace

Wide Illusion by Scenario Architecture

(Image credit: Scenario Architecture/Matt Clayton)

Even a small balcony or terrace can benefit from the space- and light-enhancing properties of bi-folding doors. With the doors open, your outdoor space won’t feel so tiny after all.

This home transformation by Scenario Architecture makes the most of a small space with the use bi-folding doors.  

6. Go for classic bi-fold design in a traditional extension

Orangery by Westbury Garden Rooms

(Image credit: Westbury Garden Rooms)

Thinking of extending to create a conservatory or orangery? A traditional bi-folding design will work well, opening the room up into the garden on warmer days.

This orangery design is by Westbury Garden Rooms

7. Combine with sliding doors in an awkward space

design by Scenario Architecture

(Image credit: Scenario Architecture)

Unusually-shaped rooms will benefit from a flexible approach – a combination of bi-fold doors and sliding doors. Go bespoke to get the best results. 'Both sliding or bi-fold doors are fantastic options if you’re looking to enhance your home’s design. Not only do they dramatically increase the amount of natural light flooding into a space, but they’re also extremely energy efficient, without compromising on security.' Adds O'Boyle.

This bespoke design is by Scenario Architecture

8. Go for bi-color doors 

bi-colour bi-fold doors from Bison Frames

(Image credit: Bison Frames)

Like the idea of a different door color on the inside of your room to that on the outside? This is something you can achieve with composite bi-fold doors and sliding doors. The composite construction of these WarmCore aluminium doors from Bison Frames means a different shade on either side comes at no extra cost. There are four powder-coated finishes on offer, as well as four external aluminium designs for the door sashes, three handle finishes and four threshold options. 

9. Fit bi-fold doors for a home extension

Sunflex SF75 bi-fold doors, IDSystems

(Image credit: Matthew Clayton)

Bi-fold doors can happily suit an extension of a Victorian home or other historic property. In this extension project by Scenario Architecture, they make the addition bright and open, while still allowing light through to the original home via door and window openings left in place to respect the historic layout. These bi-fold doors from ID Systems are integrated with angled fixed frame glazing in the gable end and a single glazed door. 

10. Include bi-fold doors in an industrial home design

bi-fold doors in industrial setting from Origin

(Image credit: Origin)

In dark silver metallic with stainless steel hardware, these bi-fold doors from Origin complement the interior furnishings perfectly. Standard two-door bi-fold, H2.2m x W1.8m, £2,519.

11. Go for bi-fold doors with built-in screens 

Centor 205 integrated folding door

(Image credit: Centor)

Built-in screens and shades in Centor’s 205 integrated door prevent overheating and stop insects entering the house. They’re solid European Oak on the inside with an aluminum exterior. This H2.13m x W5.76m doorset cost £15,264.

12. Maximize a natural effect with oak doors

KustomFold oak bi-fold doors from Kloeber

(Image credit: Kloeber)

Enjoy unique natural detail  with these Oak KustomFold doors from Klöeber. There’s a variety  of stain or paint finishes including a dual-color option. From £3,390 for W2.09m up to H2.2m.

13. Throw back the patio doors for unrestricted garden access

bifold doors in a conservatory

Accoya bi-fold doors with ironmongery, from £8,500, The Sash Window Workshop

(Image credit: Sash Windows Workshop)

Whether you have a big or small outdoor space, make access to it more vibrant with bright white bi-folds. Although this is split into several separate panels, it still lets in plenty of light.

'When it comes to homes with smaller structural openings, many people favour bi-folds as when stacked neatly to the side, they leave a completely open aperture, giving the interior space a strong connection with the outdoors.' Says Shannon Normoyle of IQ Glass.

14. Brighten up a kitchen diner with a wall of doors

doors by Anglian Home Improvements

(Image credit: Anglian Home Improvements)

A long garden-facing kitchen diner will look stunning with bi-fold doors all along the length – not only stylish, but also useful for illuminating the kitchen when it’s in a corner.

This stunning design by Anglian Home Improvements goes all-out on doors – and roof windows to boot!

15. Enhance your space with an external mirrored finish

Mirrored bi-fold external doors on paved space

(Image credit: Genesis Collections)

Sure to add interest and enhance smaller backyards, choosing mirrored glass bi-folds will also up the privacy inside if your outdoor space is somewhat overlooked. 

16. Go floor to ceiling

Bi-fold doors open onto small patio corner

(Image credit: IQ Glass)

Make an impact with floor to ceiling bi-fold designs, we love how it complements the wall length picture window also.

17. Contrast aluminum bi-fold frames with wood

Black framed bi-fold doors looking out onto a small paved area from dining room/kitchen extension with wooden benches and other accents

(Image credit: IQ Glass)

Aluminum bi-fold doors are fairly cost effective and they look beautiful when contrasted with natural wooden features like with different types of windows or even any furniture you have in the surrounding area like above.

'Choosing the right framing material can be difficult given there are now so many options. With timber, steel, aluminum and uPVC all available some homeowners can find it overwhelming. We always recommend going for metal framed doors as timber frames expand and contract which can cause problems, and also require frequent special maintenance. For uPVC they have a shorted lifespan and with exposure to sunlight can become discolored. So really the choice comes down to aluminium or steel. Steel is more expensive but has an extremely long lifespan and real steel framing has an aesthetic that is hard to mimic. Aluminum is more cost-effective and requires little to no maintenance thanks to its natural rust and corrosion-resistant properties. If you’re choosing between steel and aluminum there is no better choice, it comes down to personal preference, budget and requirements of the project, such as thermal performance.' Adds Normoyle.

18. Elevate an open-plan design

Open plan kitchen with internal bi-fold doors with black frame

(Image credit: IQ Glass)

Broken plan is the way forward. Install internal bi-folding doors to give you the option of closing off a kitchen area or not.

19. Bring warmth in with bi-fold closet doors

Wooden paneled bi-fold doors

(Image credit: Wayfair)

Internal bi-folds are a top choice to keep walk-in closets neatly closed off but still very accessible. Natural paneled options will bring warmth to a space like these pine closet bi-fold doors from Wayfair

20. Make kitchen cabinet doors bi-fold

White bifold kitchen cabinet doors in white space with marble countertops and tiled splashback

(Image credit: Mereway Kitchens & Bathrooms)

Folding doors needn't be reserved for your closet or extension either, mix up your kitchen cabinet ideas up with bi-folds for a sleek design that lets you decide whether you want your spices on show or not.

Are bi-fold doors worth the money?

Modern and versatile, bi-fold patio doors are comprised of a series of panels that open, concertina-style, and stack at a right angle to the wall. The doors can be completely pushed back to provide unrestricted access to the garden patio space, particularly when paired with a level threshold. They offer a large glazed surface area when external and the cost usually starts around $600 for installation. With prices starting at around $100 for internal bi-folds, the benefits of both styles does outweigh the cost in our eyes.

Anna Cottrell
Anna Cottrell

Anna is Consumer Editor across Future's home brands. She moved to the world of interiors from academic research in the field of English Literature and photography. She is the author of London Writing of the 1930s and has a passion for contemporary home decor and gardening.

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