Monday, January 13, 2014

Mud Room Closet Makeover - Basket, Basket, on the Wall

Remember how just a few weeks ago (maybe less than that) I was complaining about all the stuff in our house? Well, here is a perfect example. This is the collection of my kids' hats and mittens that were in the back hall closet. I assure you that all of my children only have one head. So why do they have so many hats?
The baby, who is 4 1/2 months old, has no less than eight hats in the closet. Even if he wore a different hat every day of the week, he couldn't get through all of these hats. We never bother with putting mittens on him because he is usually bundled in his Bundle Me in his car seat. But for some reason he has four pairs of mittens.
The funny thing is that the kid who spends the most time outside has the least hats and mittens. However, that could be because he regularly loses them. Currently we have three sets of missing mittens that are somewhere between our house and school.
 And, the two year old... well, I'll let the picture tell the story.
After laying all of this out, I realized that no matter what kind of organization I came up with for the closet, I was destined to fail if I didn't edit what was being kept there. This was a huge "AHA" moment for me (although it probably shouldn't have been). Yes, what I am saying is, the less stuff you have, the less cluttered your house will be. I know, I just blew your mind, right?

I will work on it.

When I began working on the closet makeover, I planned to build a lovely cabinet with 16 cubby holes to stash all of the hats and mittens and sunscreen and other stuff but, I quickly realized designing it on my own and figuring out cuts and all that was WAYYY over my ability level. So, I decided baskets would be much easier. Many people had used window baskets in their closets like the ones here, or bins like the ones here.

I tried to order the window baskets from the first link but, although they were on the Lowe's website, they were not available. I searched for other window boxes to no avail. (Wrong time of year?) I ended up purchasing some of these "Media baskets" from Target.

I had a plan for hanging them that failed royally. (I almost put a "wait for it" in there.) So, after an hour and a half of trying things out, a trip to the Home Depot,  another hour of trying things out, a few breaks to relieve frustration, and at least one rant on the topic of why I INSIST on DIYing everything and how bloggers make everything so effing easy when in reality it is not, I ended up with this:
Phew! Let's just say, no "project" ever goes 100% smoothly for me. Or ends up the way I envisioned it. Just keeping it real for you!

Here is how I did it:

* I measured the space.
* Divided it by the number of baskets. 4
* Figured out how much room I wanted between the baskets. 3 1/2"
* Measured some more and marked up the wall

* Decided how many places I wanted to attach the baskets to the wall. 3.
* Marked up the wall some more
* Drilled pilot holes

 * Used wall anchors and my drill to knock them into the wall (who needs a hammer?)
* I used the screws that came with the wall anchors and some washers to attach the baskets to the wall. The idea came from here. Thanks "A Beautiful Mess!" Basically, I put the washer on the screw, then pushed the screw through the basket weave from the inside of the basket out. Then I screwed the screw into the wall anchor and voila! Hanging baskets.

Right now, it looks neat and clean in that corner of the closet. And, the boys have FAR less choices of hats in their individual baskets. I do have larger baskets on the shelf above the bench where I could put a few back-up hats in case the bus gobbles up some more.

Here is my updated "To do" list for the project:

1. Create bench
2. Create shelves for storage
3. Get baskets and bins to hang on side wall and to put on shelves
4. Get hooks for back wall and side wall for backpacks, jackets, and hats.
5. Figure out a fun color for the wall and/or finish (wallpaper? decals? wood planking?) Partially Complete
6. Install everything Partially Complete (Only the hooks to go!)
7. Make cushion for bench
8. Decorate the wall across from the closet with mirror or chalkboard/photos/hooks

I am almost done with this one! I am still thinking through some ideas for details of the project, but I have all the big pieces in place, or in transit. It looks like I will be averaging about a project a month this year. We will see!

Anyone else try to hang baskets this weekend? Or go on a rant about  DIY bloggers?  I must be feeling pretty ranty lately. (Not to be confused with randy) I have another one I'm currently editing for next week. I apologize in advance.

If you want to see where this project started, and how I have gotten to where I am today, here are the links:

Project Overload - First Up... Mud Room Closet Makeover

Mud Room Closet Makeover - Day Two I Built a Bench!

Mud Room Closet Makeover - Let's Build Some Shelves!

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