Thursday, October 2, 2014

The Coat Closet - my first build!

Our coat closet is one of those spaces that always felt like a work-in-progress. There has been a LOT of staring involved in this one...

When we toured this house before we bought it, I loved that the previous owners had installed a second rod low enough for the kids to hang their own coats - brilliant! Once we moved in, I was less excited that they also had swinging saloon-style doors on the closet. The front door and the door to the garage both open toward (and then covering) this closet... add 2 adults and 2 kids trying to come in and put their shoes and coats away, and no clearance between the opening doors and the stairwell, and, well, I sort of ripped the swinging (never fully closing) doors off that closet one day. Oh, the satisfaction.

But then the closet was in plain sight every time we walked down the stairs... ahhh! Disorder, clutter, I can't even...

It needed to be WAY more organized now. As it was, we had very little space for shoes, bags, mittens, etc, so it was pretty messy.

First I tried tearing out the shelves and rods and put in a bookshelf and hooks on the walls in front of it. This was actually a pretty good solution for a while. The shelves offered a lot more shoe storage and also allowed for cube organizers for holding hats, balls, etc. But then winter came, coats were bigger, they hung in the way of the shelves, ... clutter (I can't stand clutter!)

... more staring, more measuring.

(Realizing that I really need to take more before and during pictures... sorry for the lack so far! Ha!)

Anyway, fast forward through tearing that out, emptying a different shelf from the basement and hauling it upstairs only to realize it wouldn't actually fit, tearing the jerry-rigged door frame off, spackling and painting... and then more staring and googling.

Internet searching brought up lots of "almost right" but super pricey options. Thankfully, my google searching also turned up these plans. It didn't look much more difficult that assembling Ikea furniture (which I have a LOT of experience at, ha!) and the government shutdown was looming, so I decided the build-it-myself option was better then the spend-too-much option!

I had so much fun building this and Ana White's plans made it so easy! I seriously had it to this point in an evening! I loved being able to customize the size to fit the closet just the way I wanted it to, and the whole thing was just so empowering!

Once I had it in place, I realized I needed the backing so that the shoes wouldn't slip back too far. I decided to paint a subtle circle design on the piece before attaching it (by dipping a plastic cup in paint and stamping the circles in an overlapping pattern) but realized after that it was a bit too subtle and not really noticeable, but oh well! Not every plan works out.

Add lots of hooks on the walls at all different heights for coats, hats, bags, etc and we're all set!

This solution has actually held up now for a year, so maybe I've finally found a solution that will last!

So, what space in your home are you constantly changing? (or staring at...)  ;) 

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