How a Girl Built her Closet

How to build a closet without breaking the bank

This is the perfect time of year to start thinking about getting organized.  One of my all time favorite spaces in my house is my master closet, probably because it is the most organized space in my house!

I originally shared my Master Closet Makeover last year, and for a while I was getting questions about it almost on a daily basis.

Today I’m going to share how I built my closet.

If you haven’t seen my closet makeover, allow me to set the scene. This is how it started:

Before Master Closet

Lovely, I know.  Here is how it looks today:

How to Bulld a closet

How to build a closet

It is not a huge space by any means compared to similar sized houses from the 80′s, so it was important that I use every square inch wisely.

Most of the questions I received were about measurements and how I knew what would go where. Hopefully I will answer those questions here:

What are the measurements of your closet?

My closet measures 6′ wide X 4 1/2′ deep and from ceiling to floor is about 8′.

How did you get started?

I sketched each wall of my closet on graph paper, allowing each square to equal one square foot. Then I started penciling in what I wanted to go where.

How did you decide how to divide the space so that everything would fit your needs?

To decide on the height for each space, I used a sample of what would be hanging/stored there.  I used a few pairs of pants to determine how tall to make that section. I used a few shirts to measure out that section. I did the same with my shoes and boots. For the spaces that hold baskets and bins, I found the bins first. Then I measured to accommodate them.

Did you paint the wood first?

Yes! I primed and painted everything first. The knots have bled through a tiny bit in a few spots, so I would probably prime any knots a couple of times before painting. I used a six-inch sponge roller to apply the paint and then touched up any areas that needed it with a brush after installation.

Where did you start?

I painted the walls first of course, using some leftover bathroom wall paper scraps on either side of where the shoe shelves would go. Then I built the shoe tower.  For the sides of the shelving as well as all the shelving in the closet I used 12″ pieces of pine cut to fit the lengths I needed. Here are the measurements for the shoe shelves:

How to Build a Closet

All of the shelves are about 6 1/2″ apart with the exception of the bottom shelf which is 12″ tall to accommodate a couple of bins. I store my flip-flops and slippers in these. The bottom shelf is at the same height as the molding I used to trim it out.

How are the clothing areas installed?

If you look at my closet closely, you can see a piece of 1X5 pine that is supporting the shelving all the way around.

How a Girl Built her Closet

This was the next step. Installing this piece the length of the wall allowed me to screw it right into the studs. I  added  another piece the depth of the shelf on the left for support:

How a Girl Built her Closet 11

On the right side, I took the support all the way to the shoe shelving so I could find a stud. Clothes are extremely heavy, so try to take advantage of studs whenever possible.

How a Girl Built her Closet 12 1

I installed the hanging bar next, screwing the hardware right into the side supports. Then I added the shelf above. Here are some basic measurements I used:

How to build a closet without breaking the bank

The basket shelving was built by adding 1X3 pieces (the depth of the shelves) to the wall, screwing them into studs.

Baskets for closet storage

Then I cut a piece of 1X12 for the right side support in the height I needed. I attached the shelving with a nail gun from the right side, using a level as I went.

Here are my measurements which are based on the size of the baskets, yours may vary depending on your needs.

How a Girl Built her Closet 13 1

To finish this side off, I added 1X5 the rest of the length of the top, and to the right side and added the top shelf. This holds bins that keep everything from books, to photo albums, to jeans I may or may not be hoping to squeeze back into some day :)

How a Girl Built her Closet 2

The other side was built very similarly. I started with the support pieces for the hanging bar and shelf. Here are some basic measurements:

How a Girl Built her Closet 10 1

For the  left side supports, I took them to the shoe shelving, again to take advantage of the studs. It doesn’t take away from the finished look. Now that pipe is another story…

How to Build a Closet without Breaking the Bank

For the middle shelf, I added supports the same way, only I used 1X3 s. I added my shelf and then to build the cubbies, I cut two pieces of 1X12 to 12″ to act as dividers. They also support the top shelf along with side wall supports. I secured them with a nail gun through the top shelf.

How a Girl Built her Closet 3 1

The shelf and hanging bar appear to be sagging a bit, but it’s just the picture.  As you can see the shelf appears to be leaning forward as well, but it’s not. This is a good time to tell you though that if you have a wall that’s any larger than this, you probably want to add shelf brackets in the center for additional support.

Where did you buy your baskets?

I found these at Michaels for 50% off.  Their styles change with the season, but they always have a nice selection. I’ve seen similar lined baskets at Target, but careful they’re not made from banana leaves. The first ones I bought were and there’s a bit of an earthy odor to them.  Unless of course you like your underwear to smell earthy!

I use them to house my undergarments and belts and such:

Bins for the closet

Ok so there you have it. This is how I built my closet. Let’s take another look back so you can really appreciate it…

Master closet before and after

I think I managed to use every square inch!

Building a closet

How a Girl Built her Closet 10

How to build a closet

Did you hear? My beautiful co-hosts and I have decided to continue our Get Your DIY on series as a monthly link party on the first Sunday of every month! We will still have a theme because that’s what makes it so fun! January’s theme is Organization.  If this closet isn’t organization, I don’t know what is!

Here is how my co-hosts got organized:

Get Your DIY on:Organization

 Organizing Finances Just a Girl and Her Blog

Vintage Toolbox Charging Station The Happy Housie

A Completely Organized Toy Closet  House by Hoff

Baseball Inspired Cubby Tags   The Hankful House

 

Be sure to come back this Sunday, January 5th at 7:00 pm EST, to share how you got organized or just come by to get inspired! Our party will run until Friday, January 17th, so if you don’t have anything to share yet, you still have time!

 

Do you have a standard wall closet?

You can read about my husband’s closet here:

How to build a closet

And

You won’t want to miss my 10 Tips to a Better Closet:

10 Tips to a Better Closet

If you have any other questions about my closet,  feel free to leave me a comment. This isn’t a huge dream closet, but it is a “real” closet and it is completely do-able!…and it was built by a girl :)

I’d love to hear from you, your comments always make me smile!

XO,

Signature

 

 

 

If you like what you see, there are several ways to follow along! :)

Email * Facebook * Pinterest * Hometalk * Twitter * Instagram

 

I love to share at these awesome parties:

 

    My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia   Home Stories A2Z    photo 100_3353aaabbbb144copy_zps0998a8b5.jpg   Photobucket  photo 1001954_10101065966207063_96074138_n_zpsa41e371a.jpg   741302_10151387329451013_1242776520_o  Funky Junk Interiors  Suburbsmama Project Inspired Button Chalkboard        Beyond The Picket Fence  The Shabby Nest HookingupwithHoH              Inspire ME Please Weekend Blog Hop Logo    Its Overflowing  {nifty button}  DIY Show Off     Between Naps On the Porch  Monday Funday Creating Really Awesome Free Things  Monday2 Make the Scene Monday #71        Give Me the Goods Monday  What did you make        Best of the Weekend! Join the party on Fridays at 8:00 p.m. EST at Little Miss Celebration!  Boogieboard Cottage  One More Time Events  Homemade by You Wednesday with Katie   photo 1001954_10101065966207063_96074138_n_zpsa41e371a.jpg        PinkWhen Three Mango Seeds  The Weekly Creative

 

 

 

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Comments

  1. Wow, great job and thanks for laying it all out. I have a closet to build this year (each room has a long deep narrow cupboard, so I’m splitting both in half and opening them out, but they would be about 1/10th of your space!! Then that’s okay, since I have less than 1/20th of the clothes that you do!! Very well organised, does it always stay so?

    • Thanks, Annet! It actually does stay neat since there is a place for everything. That is if you don’t count the small pile of clothes that seem to accumulate on that little bench. Maybe thus will be helpful to you with your closet! Good luck :)

  2. You have OFFICIALLY inspired me to tackle my master closet. Thank you for the inspiration!

  3. This is amazing Christy! It looks like you had it professionally done! I love that you fold your undies oh so nicely! Mine are crammed in a drawer :)

  4. Um, AWESOME! I’m having some serious closet envy right now! I love how you really maximized the space and there is room for everything! Great job, my friend!

    ~Abby =)

    • Uh..everything except long dresses lol! I fold them up over the top of the hanger hee hee. I only have a few anyway! It’s where I go when I finally tire of picking up the same toys five times…my little haven of organization :)

  5. Amazing Christy! Our closet really needs a makeover but I’ve been putting it off because I don’t really know where to start. I have to say though that I am most impressed with your matching hangers :)

    • Lol…you are so funny! I ditched all of my old ones when I redid my closet. These weren’t expensive at all…from Walmart! This was easy to do, really! Just draw out your closet on paper and go from there :)

  6. Christy, I saw this at Best of the Weekend, and had to come over for a better look. WOW, just wow. I love everything about it. Especially the organization and tidiness!! You inspire me to at least organize, maybe even build! Thanks! :)

  7. Wow! And can I just say, WOW! I’ve been putting off finishing the redo of my master bedroom because I’m so intimidated by the closet but I think if I pay close attention to what you’ve done I can do it!

  8. Wow! What a huge difference Christy- it looks amazing “after”. Our closet is a decent size but not used efficiently at all. Another project for the list! Pinning yours for future inspiration.

  9. Your closet is awesome! I’ve got a fairly small master closet as well and I’d love to tackle it the way you did yours. Thanks for the inspiration!

  10. Christy, you just amaze me!!! Your closet is fantastic and I know how much this will inspire so many people – thanks so much for joining us and sharing at Best of the Weekend! Pinning and sharing! You are so going to be my go-to girl for the (lots) of help I’m going to need with my own goal of tackling my chronic disorganization! :) Have a fantastic first weekend of 2014!

    • You are so funny, Cindy…I told Abby that this is my tiny box of organization for when I need to retreat from all the toys I’ve picked up five times already! Have a great weekend!! XO

  11. It looks fabulous!! My husband and I share a pretty small closet and it is in bad need of a good clean out and some kind of organizing system. I think I can use several of your ideas in our small space. I love how you used every inch of space! Beautiful!

  12. OMG…I would kill for a closet like this!!! Amazing!

  13. Suburbsmama says:

    What an amazing transformation, I love how organized everything is and everything has a place. Great job! If you get a chance, please link up to my link party: http://suburbsmama.blogspot.com/2014/01/sunday-linky-39.html

  14. i love the job you did on this closet i think you converted every inch into usable space great job

  15. OK that’s totally awesome! Thanks for sharing at the DIY Sunday Showcase!

  16. Hi Christy, You did an awesome job on your closet. We just expanded our master bathroom to make room for a double vanity (I was tired of dancing around each other and fighting over the sink)! Anyway, to do that we had to take party of my already impossibly small reach and grab closet. Even though I lost space in my closet, we took down the wall between my husband and my closets and made it into one ‘large’ closet – not large by any sense… The access is bigger now with french doors and we put in an organizing system like you have built! I used about every square inch, as well, and I can’t believe how much more actually fits into my closet now that it’s super organized and the space is utilized so much better. Thanks for sharing your ideas! I would love it if you linked up at the Link It or Lump It party going on right now > http://www.twoityourself.com/2014/01/link-it-or-lump-it-party-20-plus.html

  17. What a fabulous space! i’m so jealous :) http://www.handmadeintheheartland.com/

  18. Awesome Christy!! I am SO inspired, you have no idea. We have done semi renos on our tiny little “walk in” and are going to do a big reno soon! Now I want to start sooner than later!! Beautiful closet…well used space!
    Nancy

  19. Beautifully organized closet, I am so ready to organize mine. It’s a good sized space but I need to have a plan for it. Thanks for the inspiration.

  20. Yes, you did use every square inch!! Great job – it looks so lovely and functional to the max. :-)
    Blessings,
    Kim

  21. You really did an amazing job on your closet. Every inch is used to it’s maximum potential. I love it! My closet is on my “to do ” list this year. It’s no where near as big as yours but it does have a lot of wasted space I can use. Thanks for sharing your project. It’s so inspirational!

    • Thanks, Bonnie! Our closet had so much wasted space. When I first redid outer closet, I had so much room. It didn’t take too long to fill it ha ha! Hope you get to redo yours soon! :)

  22. I found you through Fluster Busters blog………Wow this is awesome and so organized, I just love it all. I miss having a big walk in like I used to have and maybe some day I will have one back and can get it organized like this. Thanks for sharing and have a great week.

  23. Christy…there is no doubt that you used every square inch of space! And you did it beautifully too! I love an organized closet and yours is fabulous. Thanks for sharing all the important details on how you made it happen, too.

    Thank you for sharing it at Project Inspire{d}!

    Hope your week is Extraordinary!!

  24. Great closet! Something that needs to be done at my house but is way down the list. :)

    • Thanks, Melinda! There’s a lot of that going on in my house too…I want so much done, but much more important (but no fun at all) things need to come first! Thanks for stopping by! :)

  25. Awesome work and idea! This makes me wanna tackle my closet! Thanks for the inspiration. Btw, I have the same storage boxes that you have on the very top but in gray. :) Just came over from the Suburbs Mama Blog.
    Carmen

  26. Your closet is so inspirational–lots of great ideas!

  27. Will you marry me? You think I’m joking but I’m not. Or at least just be my girlfriend long enough to do this in my closet? I know Phil is going to want to put up a bunch of wire racks and shelving and I just don’t want that. I want this. And I’m pretty dumb when it comes to building stuff, so I can’t count on Me. Right now my closet is wide open, empty, and ready for whatever I dream up. I just lack the building skillz…..

    -andi

    • OMG if I only had a blank canvas to work with! I know we don’t get too serious, but Seriously, this was not hard to do! Seriously. Show Phil and see what he says. I’m pretty sure it would be cheaper too! Draw out your closet on graph paper like I suggested in my post and go from there. Home Depot or Lowes will make your cuts for you. Have I convinced you at all? Ok, if we “go out”, I get to be the girl. XO

  28. The mark of a good teacher is making the students feel that they can be successful. You have made me believe I can do this! I’m going to start drawing up plans for a smaller closet in another room. I’ve tried a couple of times to redo it, but it is such an odd shape. I think I can plan it out now so that it will maximize the space. Then … on to the master closets. I have small walk-ins. One will be a “cloffice”, and one will be my closet. I’m going to rock this because of you. Thank you so much :)

    • This is the sweetest comment ever!! Thanks so much, Lisa! I am thrilled that you feel inspired to tackle your closets. You really CAN rock this! If you start with a plan on paper to maximize the potential in your spaces, then make a list of what you need and get started. I’d love to hear how it all turns out…keep me posted!! XO

  29. This is amazing, Christy! We redid our master closet last summer, and I know how much work it can be. Thanks for sharing at Give Me the Goods… you were featured!

  30. LOVE this! I’ve got a bare-bones closet that is HUGE but doesn’t use the space very well. A makeover like this is on my wish list! Now, to just get my hubby to build it for me, hehe…

  31. This is amazing! Thanks for linking up to Project Inspired… I featured you this week!

  32. Christy, I think this is your most impressive DIY to date!!! I am sharing at my party. It has been popular this week, and for such a good reason!

  33. Thank you for linking up to the Hit Me With Your Best Shot Link Party Last week. Hope to see you and your Awesome ideas tonight at 7 EST!

    ~Ariean http://onekriegerchick.com/

  34. This is so, so awesome!!! Thanks for linking it up at Monday Funday! I’m inspired!

  35. Bravo!

  36. Thanks for the post. I really, really need to update our closet, it’s a mess! This is just the inspiriaton I need to get going! Great job!

  37. This is so AWESOME!!!!!!! I am inspired. Thanks so much for doing a great job on the pics and explanations.

  38. Nice closet but are you not worried about carbon monoxide leaking from the vent into your bedroom? I am surprized that it is not boxed in.

  39. Christy!!!! I think I forgot to give you my address so we can start on my closet ;-)

    I love it! Thanks for sharing at Throwback Thursday.

    xoxo
    Denyse

  40. FINALLY! Someone posts a REAL closet with a REAL amount of clothes! I think you’re the first on the web. Seriously though, Container Store and IKEA have great closet suggestions, but their measly two skirts, three pairs of pants, five shirts, and three pairs of shoes are ridiculous. Home decor mags are just as bad. My daughter’s clothing collection takes up about 75 linear feet of shelves, hanging, and floor space, and she’s still crammed in. Yours is the first closet I’ve seen that looks as though she maybe could fit everything in one space. GREAT design job, cute clothes, and fab inspiration!!

    • Ha Ha! You are so right. Every closet system advertised doesn’t even show enough clothes for a long weekend away! My closet is pretty full, but you can see clearly how much it can hold (a lot). So glad you stopped by and found some inspiration here! XO

  41. You have totally inspired me! I want this now!!! I had a few questions…I am not the graph paper planning type so do you have your sketch that you could show us? Did you do it from above or of each wall? Also, the rods you used, are they wood or something else? Did you paint those as well and where did you get them? Thank you so much for sharing!

    • Awesome! Unfortunately I don’t have my sketch, but I drew each section as if I were standing in front of it looking at it head on. I measured each wall of my space and made each square on the graph paper = one foot, so my drawing would be to size. The rods are metal and I purchased them in the white finish at Home Depot. I’m so excited you feel inspired and I’m happy to answer any questions you have along the way. :)

      • Thanks Christy! My husband was wondering what gauge and length nails you used and the length of the screws. Thanks so much!

        • I’m not sure about the nails, since I borrowed the nail gun and don’t have any leftover nails for reference, but I believe I used 2″ wood screws. I’d love to see your project when you’re done if you’re up to sharing! :)

          • Christy, I feel like I may drive you crazy before I even get this started. I wanted to know if your shoe tower was attached to the wall and if it is how you did it. I don’t see a back on it, so I wasn’t sure. I have small children and the last thing I need is for them to pull a shelf of shoes over on them. Thanks a ton!

          • Ha ha, you’re no bother at all. As for the shelves, I had to wedge the two side pieces in place because they were a very tight fit, so honestly that’s what’s keeping them up. I had planned to add a few “L” brackets to secure it to the wall behind it, from the inside. It’s so snug in there, though that I haven’t yet. The brackets should hold it securely in place if needed. :)

  42. Simply amazing!

  43. Very, very impressive!! I have awful wire shelves in my closet, and I have really been wanting to redo it. You have really inspired me to hop to it. This will be my summer project. Thank you for sharing with the rest of us who were afraid to tackle such a project. :)

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