Master Closet – Part 4
Well, the week after my last post ended up being mostly a bust. I quickly realized I wasn’t going to get the center shelves or the trim installed by myself unless I suddenly grew extra arms. To fix the issue with the 1/2″ plywood being warped and potentially not holding up, I screwed inexpensive 1×3 furring strips to the bottom of the middle divider shelves. With the trim along the front, it is not noticeable unless you lay on the floor.
For the adjustable shelves, I decided to go back to my original plans to use MDF. We lost some money there since I had already cut them out of plywood and had to buy 2 sheets of MDF instead. They are much nicer though so it was worth it – flat, smooth and sturdy.
I had to cut them all down a bit to fit in the openings. Once I had them positioned, I measured and cut 1×2 MDF to trim the front.
Here they are installed.
For the holes, I originally made a jig off a design I found online and used a standard drill bit. It didn’t work too well. The drill bit shredded the plywood leaving awful looking holes. Despite my best efforts, the holes were not level from one side to the other. I decided to splurge and buy Kreg’s Shelf Pin Jig. I hated to spend $30 on something I might not use again, but it was worth it. I drilled the holes in the above picture with the included jig and drill bit. It took very little time and they came out perfect. I ended up filling the previous holes on the other cabinet and redrilled them using the new jig (which I should have done in the first place). I’ll need to use it again on the bathroom cabinet which is currently on hold until the closet is done.
Meanwhile, David and I got the middle divider shelves installed and the trim applied to all the unfinished edges after my week of getting almost nothing done. Getting the trim on made me feel a lot better about the whole project because it looked so much better. The crown molding had to be special ordered so it’s not installed yet.
Last week, I installed the vertical dividers in the drawer cabinets and attached trim to the backer board around the breaker box openings. I filled all the nail holes and seams with wood putty, sanded, filled some more, sanded. I finally got it all cleaned up on Friday and was able to start caulking all the joints. That, too, made a huge difference in the appearance because it started to look more “finished”.
We spent most of Saturday painting all the cabinets. I’m really glad I had already put a coat of paint on most of it before we installed it otherwise it probably would have taken us 2 days to do the final coats. Most of it only required one more coat, but we did apply a 3rd to some areas that needed it. We ran to Lowe’s yesterday morning and picked up the clothing rods. These were pricey for all that they are, but I couldn’t find any cheaper options that would look as nice or be as strong.
David got them installed and we started moving our hanging clothes back in.
You can see the finished air vent in the picture below which would have been covered otherwise.
The unpainted areas are where drawers will go.
Below you can see all the cut outs we had to make. The top cabinet now has the water heater control mounted to the side. Below it is the 2 large breaker boxes for the house. Behind the shelves is the access box for all the coax wires in the house. I’m still trying to decide whether to paint the breaker box doors to match the cabinets and I need to install the cover over the coax box.
I was pleasantly surprised to find that we have more than enough hanging space. We actually only filled about 2/3 of it. I’m a bit worried that we don’t have enough shoe storage, but I will probably put most of my shoes in very top cabinets since I rarely wear them. We also have the mud room where we keep the pairs we wear every day.
I just got a call while I was typing this saying that our crown molding is in. We will probably pick it up today and maybe get it installed this afternoon. That will really finish the overall look so I am excited to see it.
That will leave only the drawers remaining. I need to order the drawer slides online since they are a lot cheaper than buying them locally. Building the drawers should go pretty quick, but getting them installed correctly will be challenging. I guess we’ll see how it goes!