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Turning a Blank Wall into a Closet - Dressing Room Progress

Today I've got some big updates to share on the dressing room project! As I sit and reflect on the progress so far, I feel so grateful to be able to design and create within my home. Each time I get to work on a room makeover, I get so fired up and motivated - and I know that's because I'm so dang passionate about design! This project is no different - ever since I crystallized my vision of a beautiful, functional and organized dressing room, I've been laser focused on bringing that vision to life. It's amazing what can happen when you're fueled by passion!

Now, there is a flip side to being extremely motivated and focused on a project. There have been moments over the past 2 weeks where I've overworked myself and dedicated too much energy to this room when my energy was needed elsewhere. It's a learning process, and as with all things in life, finding balance is key. Which is exactly why I wanted to take some time today to celebrate and share the progress I've made up to this point. I've gotten REALLY far, but I don't want to rush to the finish line. I want to savor the journey and give myself the space to recognize how much I've accomplished so far. (Not to mention my fiancé and I agreed this is the last home project I'll take on until after the wedding, so savor it I must!)

So, without further ado, let me show you how I turned a blank wall into a bangin' closet.

Step 0 - All About that Base

I almost forgot to include this step because the main focus of this post is the closet system. But! As with all room projects, the first thing I did before anything else was paint the trim and the walls. Paint is the base that makes the whole room design come together! The wall color is Glidden Barn Door, a beautiful dusty red that looks a lot softer in person than in these photos.

Step 1 - Start with a Blank Wall and a Dream

Measure the wall, mark the studs, and start doing some serious research into how to turn this into closet...

Step 2 - Get the Stuff and Start Drilling like a Maniac

After doing a bunch of research, I decided on the ClosetMaid Closet System because it's inexpensive and very versatile. My wall is 5'9" wide, so I purchased the 4-6' closet system. I started by installing the hang rails at the top, and that's where I made a very rookie mistake. The shorter bar on the right was installed in drywall using toggle anchors. No problems there; everything worked as it should. As for the longer hang rail on the left, I didn't realize there was a stud along the top of the wall, so instead of going the easy route and screwing the hang rail directly into the stud, I started drilling holes for the toggle anchors again. Lord knows how long I would have gone on drilling absolutely 100% unnecessary holes into the stud before I figured out my error... (Thanks to Nick for interrupting my drilling to ask what the heck I was doing, and pointing out that I was in fact drilling into wood and not drywall.) The next homeowner who takes this system down will definitely be shaking their head at my handiwork (or lack thereof).

Anyway, it was easy enough to bump the hang rail an inch or so to the right and screw it into the stud. Problem solved (though my embarrassment is still hanging around).

I mention this mistake because I don't want it to seem like I'm some kind of expert. I'm figuring things out as I go, and doing the best I can with what I've got. Mistakes happen, and most of the time, they can be fixed.

Step 3 - Finish the Install & Load 'er Up!

Here is where it really started coming together! I put the shelves up, leaving enough room at the top for storage bins and enough room at the bottom so Nick's clothes don't drag on the floor. Woohoo - the vision is coming to life!

Ladies and gentleman, we have a closet!

Step 4 - Make it Custom

Once I started hanging things up, I realized I have a TON of long clothes. This 5' closet system didn't leave a lot of room for those long items to hang, so I quickly realized I needed to make some customizations. Luckily, the ClosetMaid system is super easy to customize, as each of the parts (rods, shelves, etc) are sold separately and are easy to cut down to size. I went back to Menards and purchased a 6' hanging rod and a 6' shelf so that I could extend the top half of the closet to accommodate my long clothes, then I cut each piece to the full length of my wall (5'9") and re-installed them. Perfect!

And that's it! It's so much more organized, functional, and pretty now! I've added some other fun things to the room as well, like a shoe rack, new light fixture and a wall-mounted jewelry armoire that doubles as a full-length mirror. It's getting very close to complete and I can't wait to share the reveal with you!

Let me know what you think in the comments below. Is there a blank space in your home you'd like to turn into a closet? I wanna know!



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