A Closet Case

One of the selling points for me in our house was the closet in the master bedroom. It had a window! A window in a closet!? Sold. And there was so much space! Which meant more room for us to throw stuff places, basically.

I dreamt of having one of those amazing custom closets where everything had its place, but figured that would never happen unless I won the lottery. So, I was perfectly fine with the way the closet was. Here it is below in it’s horrible cluttered manner.

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Sure, it was huge and it had a window, but it was kind of a disaster at all times. We just learned to shut the door.

My husband decided that he wanted to take on this project himself. I can’t say that I was fully on board with it; I had other things I wanted to do around the house first. However, I’m glad he did it, because I love it now.

He started by building a shelving unit that would house his folded shirts and have hanging space for pants in the bottom.

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In the meantime, my job was to take EVERYTHING out of the closet and throw it in the guest room. You never realize just how much stuff is packed into a closet until you start unleashing it. Wow. I had the joy of digging through clothes on the guest bed everyday before work instead of strolling into my closet to pick out an outfit…

Anyway, after he was done building the first piece, I stained it, and we brought it upstairs to see how it worked in the closet.

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I was still hesitant, but he insisted that it would be great. He said he could already visualize it. All I could visualize was the fact that it was going to take forever at the rate we were going and I would have to live out of the guest room for months. But that was just me being a Debbie downer in my head. I smiled and went along with it.

Before we went any further, we disassembled all the wire shelving and patched the holes in the walls. We also decided to paint the walls a color that matched the master bathroom. (Our room color scheme is mostly yellow and brown)

After that was finished, we proceeded with building the rest of the units that would make up the closet. We drew a plan: two corner units with doors, an area for hanging dresses, an area for folded shirts & pants, and plenty of overhead storage space. First on the list were the corner units.

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We then attached all of the units firmly to studs in the walls and ran a metal bar between the two corner units.

His side:
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My side:
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Then we added another metal bar above the first one, and hung some clothes up to make sure the spacing worked between the two.

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It stayed this way for a few weeks because this was proving to be a lot more work than we first anticipated. It was a lot of building and staining. We were losing steam. It was put together enough for most of my clothes to be hung back up, so it was less of a big deal to me. The outlook I had on the closet was not so good, though. I was beginning to think that it looked like a hot mess and it was better the other way…

After a break, we acquired some more steam to finish the project. It was time to add doors to the open corner units. Originally I wanted mirrors on the door fronts. After holding one up, I realized all it did was reflect clothes and make it look more cluttered. So, we opted against it.

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All we needed to do now was add the hanging unit for my dresses, and a top shelf for storage above the hanging clothes.

We went to visit the in-laws during this process and they were getting rid of a bunch of shelves they used to use in their bedroom. We took them and used them for boot storage in the closet. I even had room to put my grandmother’s vanity in there instead of in the bedroom itself. It was all working out better than I had hoped for.

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Of course, it is still going to look a bit cluttered. It is a closet after all. However, I will say it is a lot more functionally cluttered than it was before, thanks to the hub.

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Everything has its place. No more searching through bins of boots to find a matching pair. No more getting frustrated with clothes piled on the floor. Sure, there are little things we would change about it – things that felt rushed and not quite done “right,” but that’s how we feel with everything. There’s always something we learned in the process that we know to do or not to do next time. We are always looking to better things.

In the end, it may not be one of those crazy expensive custom closets, but it works for us! We’re happy. 🙂

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Fancy and Flowered

I bought an old chandelier from a thrift store with the intention of using it in my closet when we remodeled it. However, the chandelier was way too large for the height of the ceiling, so it ended up sitting in the garage unused.

One day I decided that it was in my way and I needed to find something to do with it. I found many uses for it online: bird feeder, dessert stand, and many others. But, there was one that really struck me – a hanging planter.

I immediately thought of my mother. My Mom loves flowers. She always has the prettiest yard every summer. She takes pride in it and enjoys doing it. And Mother’s Day was right around the corner. Perfect gift!

I went to Wal-Mart and got some yellow Rustoleum spray paint and some plastic pots that matched.

My husband removed all of the lighting hardware so I had a flat surface to mount the pots onto. I used hot glue to adhere the pots to the chandelier. Using the same method as my previous chandelier re-do, I hung it from a tree to spray it.

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(Unfortunately, I didn’t take any pre-painted pictures, for some reason.)

Once it dried, it was looking pretty good! There was only one problem…

The hot glue was not a great choice. It blended in well before I sprayed, but it stuck out like a sore thumb once the paint hit it. It looked messy, and that was not what I was going for. I wanted the pots to look like they came on the chandelier, like they were meant to be there – not an added afterthought. I opted to cover up the glue markings with some ribbon around the base of each pot and added a little ribbon toward the top of the fixture to tie it together. I didn’t want to do that, but at this point, it was my only choice.

I picked up some plants at the local Ace Hardware and filled each of the 6 pots. It looked something like this when it was finished. Mom loved it.

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If you were to try to do this project on your own, here are some things I learned:
1. Get terracotta pots, not plastic. I chose plastic for weight purposes, but I don’t think they look as good.
2. Drill holes in the base of the pot and the underside of the chandelier for drainage, perhaps?
3. Do not use hot glue; I’m not sure how well it will hold up in the sun for long periods of time.
4. Glue the pots on after you spray them and the chandelier. This will ensure that the adhesive you use will remain clear.
5. As a bonus, you could always add some jewels and whatnot to fancy it up! They look pretty in the sunlight!

Other than that, the project is pretty easy. It looks really good hanging from a tree over an outdoor seating area as well. The whole project cost was only about $40.

Masterfully Re-Decorated

When I picture a Master Bedroom, I picture an elegant, relaxing oasis that makes you feel secluded from your crazy world. It should be inviting and romantic. It shouldn’t feel cramped and cluttered.

When we first moved in, I purchased a new comforter and we painted the walls of our Master Bedroom. That was basically it. I gathered pillows and furniture I already had, and stuffed it in the room. Being that I only rented before this, nothing ever felt “permanent” and I didn’t care enough to make it feel that way in a place that wasn’t “mine.” But, this was OUR house, and I wanted to make it feel that way. I wanted it to reflect our style and who we are.

I got tired of looking at the set up below. It was not terrible, it was alright, but “alright” is not how I wanted my master bedroom. Time to get crackin’.

Master before

So, I started using my drug of choice (Pinterest) and pinned inspirational ideas for the room. I discovered that I loved the look of over-sized mirrors above the side tables, I wanted the side tables to match, and the wall above the bed just looked boring, so it needed some uplifting.

For the mirrors, I looked EVERYWHERE for a deal. I searched & searched and it seemed like I was not EVER going to find large mirrors in my price range, much less matching ones. I found some decently priced mirrors on Amazon.com, but when I received them, they were MUCH smaller than I figured they would be…maybe the size of a standard piece of printer paper. It wasn’t working for above nightstands. It wasn’t the WOW factor for which I was looking. So, back to the drawing board.

I gave them a place within a grouping above a new seating area in the bedroom between two windows. In the grouping was a photograph as well as a copy of the reading a friend of ours read during our wedding ceremony. I also found a piece of ironwork at Kirkland’s that was intended to be used for above a bed, but I thought it fit nicely above the seating area. It was my lucky day, because when I walked into Kirkland’s they happened to be having a sale on that item for one day only. I scored it for $20.

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I came across an old sewing table in my thrifting that no longer housed a sewing machine. They only wanted $20 for it, so I picked it up in hopes of using it somewhere in my redecorating.

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The hub added a shelf to the bottom, I sprayed it with black paint, and painted the top a mustard yellow to match our comforter.

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I also had a nightstand that was a similar height to the sewing table, it just needed some TLC. The finish on the top was poor quality. I spilled an ICEE on it once years ago, cleaned it up quickly, and it still made the finish peel up and flake off. So, we sanded the top and I painted it the same mustard color to match the other table.

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After
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At the same time I found the sewing table, I spotted two matching lamps that were $6 each including the shade. I spray painted the gold base oil rubbed bronze, and added a raffia bow & some burlap trim to the shade to add interest.

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When I was browsing Pinterest, I saw where people would hang curtains from a curtain rod behind the bed, and I really liked the effect it had on the room. It created a since of softness and comfort. So, I imitated it with some extra sheers I had. I affixed some cup hooks to the wall at the desired tie-back height, and used old faux pearl necklaces as tie-backs. I then hung some artwork in the opening of the curtains with a sign I painted that said “Loved you yesterday, Love you Still, Always Have, Always Will” to add to the romantic feel.

I loved that it was all slowly coming together.

Still on the hunt for mirrors, I was getting very frustrated. I kept visiting the local Habitat for Humanity Restore once a week for at least a month crossing my fingers for new arrivals. The frequenting paid off, when outside the front door was a stack of about 12 matching large mirrors! If I was at all agile, I might have done a back flip at that moment. And they were only $25 each! Talk about a steal!

I would say that below is the “finished product,” but the product is never finished. I take away and add to quite often. So, I will just say this is what it looks like for now. Not a crazy transformation, but it does give us the sense of relaxation and it amped up the wow factor for us quite a bit from where it was before.

We LOVE the mirrors. Not only does it make the room look larger and feel more regal, but the light from the lamps bounces off of them and reflects beautifully. It adds a great sense of ambiance and makes the room feel a lot more masterful.

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