We have an awesome space in this house for our playroom. It is a great size, with room for toys, shelves, tv and couches and it has a nice big closet. A lot of times, I prefer to watch TV in the playroom because it is a little cozier space than our living room. However, when there are toys everywhere it is no longer cozy and relaxing and I just pretend it doesn’t exist.
Obviously, the solution to toys all over the place is for the kids to actually put their toys away. However, the “place for everything and everything in its place” isn’t working out so well for us in a couple of areas. One of them is the Lego storage. It’s a little out of control right now and I don’t quite have the solution on that one yet. Hopefully I’ll figure it out soon.
The other problem was this nice big closet with two long wire shelves for storage. They just weren’t working! Here are a few before pictures. Also, my dog is in a couple of them because she barks at me and runs around in a frenzy when I get the camera out and start snapping pictures. I just happened to catch her in a couple of the shots.
From Pinterest, I got the idea to put the games in a hanging sweater shelf and they did fit pretty well, but I couldn’t figure out how to use the rest of the vertical space effectively. When I moved in, there was another metal rack (shown below) wedged in the center of the closet in between the wire shelves. Originally it looked like a great idea, but the angled supports for the shelving made it hard to put things on the shelves and it was difficult to use the space on the sides. When I pulled it out I realized it wasn’t very useful to me out of the closet either, but it still sits there.
After looking around Pinterest at closet storage solutions for a while, I decided that the closet was the perfect candidate for shelves on the sides of the closet to use that awkward space. I knew I would be able to make the shelves fairly easily, but the solution didn’t quite fit in with my plan to use storage that can be moved with us. Yesterday, I decided it was just time to do something with the space so I made a plan headed to Lowes to get the wood I needed.
So here was the plan…
I had my measurements all written down and had the wood cut at Lowes. I had to make a couple of adjustments while I was in there. Originally I thought my shelves would be two 1x12s for the depth I wanted of 22 inches. But I found a spruce panel that was 21 inches deep and decided to use that instead. It was just as economical and looked like a nicer piece of wood. Overall, the cost was only $35 for the whole project.
Once I got home, sanded the edges of the wood and got started, this only took about an hour to build. I found the studs and nailed the ledger boards into the studs, starting with the back piece and then the two sides. When I was done with that, I just placed the shelves on top. I was looking for instant gratification on this project so I didn’t do any staining or poly and I didn’t even nail the shelves down. I may get to that at another time, but for now they work just fine and it made such a difference! I also didn’t take all the wire shelf clips off the wall yet.
And the finished, organized product.
I did not put shelves in the right side of the closet (yet). I thought I’d see how the left side went and then decide if I needed it. There’s still a lot of vertical space that could be used in that pocket, but for now I don’t really need the space for anything. The two bins in the far right corner are not used often. The bottom one was used for all the Legos when we moved and now it just has the empty bags for the next move. The top one has some Hess trucks and other random cars. The three drawer bin is the new home for our dress-up collection along with the drawer of totally random toys on top.
I keep going into the playroom (avoiding looking at the Lego corner) and peeking into the closet. While putting everything back into the closet, I did a little cleaning up and reorganizing. I found one of Jack’s good shirts hidden amongst the dress up clothes and I found all his Ninjago Lego people that had been missing for a while. It’s a win for everybody – functional storage for me and a bunch of Ninjas for Jack.