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Getting our home into gear has been a long process, especially with the whole bathroom thing. But when we tried this in the kids' spaces, we decided to move all of their clothes to our master closet since it really worked with our floor plan. It's been a streamlined process that makes getting ready (and the laundry) a cinch.


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This is a pretty simple project, but remember that any measurements are for our closet {Our closet measures at 13 (l) x 6 (w) and in one (small) place – it’s shaped like a backwards L – 8 (w) to give you some perspective.} So you'll need to sub in your own numbers. With that in mind, I'll walk you through the process (instead of providing you with a bunch of cut lists).

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Getting rid of the wire shelving

First up: Getting rid of this wire shelving. Who's idea was this stuff anyway? It's actually cheaper to build wood shelves than to install these. (Fun fact of the day.) #diewireshelvingdiebuildersbeigedie

After you unscrew them you'll more than likely have to rip the drywall anchors out of the wall (also known as those little plastic things helping keep the screw in). Don't worry about the damage, you can simply patch it with some drywall paste or mud, sand it and you're good to go on painting the area.

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Finding your look and materials

We wanted a lot of cubby space to fold and store our family's clothing, and it made a huge difference in the space it created with doing so. We scored a great closeout deal on some cubbies but, we still wanted more shelving to maximize that space above the cubbies, for everything from bedding to accessories and wedding dresses... and knew we needed something simple.

We also would need to build a space to hang clothing, and we knew the area was simply too long to run rods. So we considered putting supports under the rods and running it from one closet wall to a new wall we would build. But then we found a prefab that we could alter and fit our needs and would actually be cheaper than building.
However, we would still need to build one 'wall' to attach the system. If you need to build more than one wall for your project, just duplicate this part as many times for as many as you need.

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Building the wall

To build the wall, you'll need some 2 x 2's. How many and what length will depend on your wall size. Our wall would be 82 inches by 15 5/8 inches. So we needed (2) 2 x 2 x 8's and (1) 2 x 2 x 6.
I cut the 8 foot pieces down to 79 inches, then cut (2) 15 5/8 pieces. At the top and the bottom, simply attach the 79 inch pieces to the 15 5/58 with some wood glue and #10 2 1/2 inch wood screws. I used an impact driver, but you can use a regular drill as well. If you do, you might want to pre drill your hole first to avoid stripping the screw (remember adjust your sizes to your space).
Decide where your rod will hang and cut a 1 x 6 to 12 5/8 and attach it. I just used scrap wood laying around. (You can do all this cutting with a Miter saw/box, but since it was a small project I just used a good old fashioned circular saw.)

Now you will need to cover one side of the wall you built. You can use about anything from sheetrock to wood planks to MDF board. We choose MDF, because I always have a sheet laying around some where and we would use it for another part of this project.
I simply measured out a piece 82 inches by 15 5/8 and cut it with my saw. Then attached it to one side by spreading some wood glue and using a finish nail gun to secure it.

You'll need to attach the new wall to the your existing closet wall. Ideally you will be able to drive it into a stud. If not you will need to buy some form of a wall anchor to hold it in place. We were able to drive ours into a stud. (Tip: paint it before you attach it, you can thank me later - matched up to the white/creamy color of the Ikea shelves).

Also, I cut out a small notch for the crown molding and a snug fit at the bottom.

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Cut and attach your shelving.

Measure all the places that you will be placing shelving including the top of the wall you just built to the shelving unit. Make sure you measure not only distance but depth as well.
We decided to use 1/2 inch MDF for our shelves, not only because of the depth of our shelves, but also the affordability of MDF.
Our depth was 15 5/8 inches. I used a circular saw (or table saw if you have one) to cut my strips of MDF. I then also cut several strips at 1 1/2 inches to be used as wall supports for the shelves. You will need to cut as many linear feet of these strips for as much shelving as you are putting up. You'll want to place this anywhere the shelves might touch a wall.

After you decide on the height of your shelves, measure down 1/2 inch and use a laser level to draw a straight line across the wall. Place the top of your 1 1/2 strips on this line and attach them to the wall. Again I would suggest painting before attaching and you only have to paint one side. (Hint I used a nail gun to quickly hold them in place before using a impact driver and #8 2 inch screws to screw them into closet wall studs.)

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Support your shelving.

Now that you know the height of your shelves you will need to cut some more 2 x 2's to use as supports. I would suggest spacing them no more than every 2 feet. Again you can use a circular saw to cut these. We kept it simple, and it really worked for this space.

Once you have all these and your shelves cut and painted you can assemble them. Simply place your shelf on the wall support already hung and slide your 2 x 2's underneath it to stabilize it. Then begin screwing the shelf onto the wall supports using # 8 1 1/2 inch screws and into the 2 x 2's using 2 inch screws.

We also decided to run a shelf across each hanging section and followed the same steps except the 1 1/2 inch support strips were placed on the sides, instead of the back.

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If you are running corners as we did you will want to brace the two pieces together. You could drill pocket holes and screw them together or you can simply use melding brackets to join and support the two shelves. These particular ones won't support a lot of weight, but because of the layout of our closet, it worked. We use this area to store blankets, pillows and all around things we aren't using at the moment.

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Finishing touches.

At this point your shelving might look a little rough, and that is where the finishing comes in.

We finished off our shelves with some quarter round molding and I cut a thin piece of wood to place over the outside of the wall I built. I attached it all with wood glue and a nail gun. Then finished it off with some quick drying paintable chalk.

So there it is! An easy way to get rid of that wire shelving and create our closet the way you want it.

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