July 2, 2010

I’m a Closet Case!

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , , , , , at 7:57 am by dotcomdecorator

Well, not really…my closet is the case. I have, by all accounts, a nice, rather large closet. But it’s one of those spaces in my home that during visitor tours, I quickly open the door, mutter, “This is the closet” and close the door just as my guests say, “It’s nice and big!” Yeah, yeah. Boring. I’m working on fixing that though!

So here’s the deal…one of these days, while my husband is away, I’m going to finish the bathroom face lift.  Shhhhh, don’t ruin the surprise! It’s a nice, large, and very white bathroom–white floor, shower and tub-surround tile, accented by the white cabinets, white laminate (shudder!) 10′ long countertop, white tub, sinks, toilet, and even faucets. Ok, I’ll stop…open your eyes now, please!

I did update the wall color to a warm golden tone, have changed out the vanity lighting, and brought in as much color as possible with window treatments and accessories. But, there is much more in store! The two 4′  base cabinets will remain, but get a facelift–a faux burled walnut finish and new hardware! The center cabinet and linen shelves will be removed and replaced with e a 5-drawer burled walnut cabinet, topped by an etagere for towels and accessories. Instead of the one lonnnnnnnng vanity top, I will have two granite tops  installed. New faucets for the sinks and whirlpool, framing out the existing mirrors with a nice decorative trim to match the cabinetry, and adding new rugs and towels will finish the space! I recently found a great device for adapting recessed lighting into pendant lights–considering those to install two nice pendants over the whirlpool for drama! When finished, the bathroom will feel more luxurious and coordinate nicely with our gender-neutral master bedroom. And why am I telling you about the bathroom when I said I wanted to talk about my closet? Because, you have to enter the closet through the bathroom, which you enter through the master bedroom, so I can’t consider one without the others. So back to the closet…

I’ve seen some awesome luxury closets and while I’d love that–a 20×20′ space with climate controlled fur vault (which would require I own fur), rotating shoe storage, a jewelry vault, and of course a personal valet–it’s not feasible in a 8×11 shared space, on a limited budget.  Especially when one of the people sharing the space is a closet hog! Really, who hangs up tee-shirts? Who has over 100 casual shirts and insists on hanging each and every one of them in OUR closet??  It’s a losing battle, so forget suggesting I toss the shirts, move them to a dresser, give him the guest room closet (he’s already taken over two other spaces!).  Instead of fighting a losing battle, I simply must conjure up a plan for beautifying the space! I envision an extension of the bathroom–soothing wall color, neat, orderly and more of a dressing room than cramped storage space. However…

The current reality is not quite as soothing! At present we have the wire shelving system–which fell off the wall completely one day because of the 100+ shirts! At that time I threw down the gauntlet and demanded he cull his shirts–I believe 4 were removed from the closet. *sigh*  I repaired the holes, and while at it, raised all the shelves to a reasonable level. I reinstalled the shelves, re-hung the clothes and piled all the junk back on top of the shelves. It was quite a task to tackle by myself, so once I finished, I was done thinking about the closet, until now.

Looking at the space objectively, the lighting was recently replaced with decorative fixtures, we also replaced the carpeting, and the walls are in good shape. In design-speak, it has “good bones”; in wife-speak it has too much (*#&!  But I am an interior decorator and home stager–I can figure this out!  I simply need to treat it as I would a client’s house–assess the current state of the space, look at each person’s ideal outcome,  present options that  marry form and function and meet the budget, then move the client in the right direction.

Let’s first look at hubby as client:  He is ok with it the way it is, don’t spend money. Done considering him; now onto me!  I want to reconfigure the closet with minimal expense (definitely will repurpose something!); want a quick solution; want a streamlined, but elegant space; want to feel the closet is an extension of the space instead of an afterthought; want enough space for everyday clothes and to only store the current season’s clothing–wait, do tee-shirts have a season? Oh one more thing, I need to create a look that will appeal to potential buyers when we go to sell, so I cannot personalize it too much.

I initially thought of utilizing a great two-piece cabinet currently taking space in my basement. Sadly, it’s too large and would overwhelm the closet, as well as require replacement when we sell. Next thought.  Ideally, I’d love to remove the wire shelving and replace it with wood built-ins, but that is too costly and not a weekend project I can tackle on my own. Next.  I’m now considering the following:  Leave the two short ends of wire shelving in tact, but reconfigure the long wall. When the center cabinet and linen shelves are removed from the 10′ vanity, those can be position in the center of the long closet wall. That will create a perfect place to store sweaters, purses, scarves, etc., thus eliminating some of the clutter from the top of the wire shelves.  I will remove the shelving from the long wall, cut to fit 1/2 on each side of the cabinet/tower, then reinstall. Adding matching baskets/storage containers for the top of the shelves, will coral the overflow and create a more visually cohesive space. Ideally, I want to incorporate a decorative rug and tufted storage ottoman (another good place for some of the tee shirts) in the center of the closet,  some artwork on the walls, and perhaps a wall-mounted ironing board.  I do believe I’m a woman with a plan! Now I just have to wait for the proper time to complete my mission…I will keep you informed!

What is your Closet Case? What is your ideal closet? I’d love to hear your stories or even suggestions for fixing my closet case!

Until next time,

Viva Con Gioia!

The DotComDecorator


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