When we moved in to our new house we made the small sacrifice to switch rooms with the kids so they could have the bigger bedroom. That left us with about 18" on either side of our bed to roll out of in the morning before hitting our wall and about 18" between the foot of our bed and our dresser. We sold our canopy bed frame because of the ceiling fan and moved Brett's dresser into the kids' room. Our single closet is smaller than the one in my freshman dorm room which meant Brett's wardrobe and shoes would fit but mine were kind of in purgatory. Basically, we had just enough room for doing married things in our bedroom and not much else.
After much contemplation about how to store my clothing so it didn't look like we were living in a garage sale I decided I could borrow my friend Rachel Burch's brilliant idea of turning part of the basement into a closet! Our basement has a room on each side of the stairwell leading down there so I designated the bigger, brighter side as the potential closet space and the darker, crowded side full of boxes as the storage space. The closet side has a permanent sink and houses the water softener and some other things that came with the house but there was enough of a nook and decent light in the morning and I just knew if I got creative enough I'd be able to make it into something I'd enjoy using.
My first step was to clear out the excess boxes and organize things in the large cupboards opposite the photo above. Then I swept the floors, wiped down the walls, and brought in pretty, multi-faceted light bulbs. My first bright idea was to install a floor-to-ceiling curtain to cover the tiny window and stained wall behind it. It matches the pre-existing white and yellow color scheme and I already had the vintage sheet on hand and still lets plenty of soft light in.
One of the biggest projects was to build my own clothes rack from steel pipes. I've always wanted a boutique style rack but have never had the space for one in my bedroom. It's kind of ironic that my lack of space has led me to finally making one.
Another makeover project was spray painting a vintage, metal stand I found on my last trip to my secret thrifting spot in Southern Missouri for $3. It just needed a coat of black paint to match the rest of the hardware and is the perfect size for storing most of my shoes. The vintage mirror above it was found at a local D.A.V and was $5 with my military I.D. It's pretty and helps bounce light around.
The third big makeover project was turning a cheap rug into something a little more fun. I found this one at Lowe's and went to town with some freezer paper and spray paint. You want one, too? Don't worry. I've got a tutorial for that.
Two little accessories from IKEA that I've always wanted to utilize in my home made the perfect hardware for displaying my vintage silk scarf collection and favorite sunglasses.
The last big DIY for this space was creating a standing jewelry and handbag display from a pre-cut piece of lumber. It rests against the ugly cement wall covered by the curtain and was a great solution for the awkwardness of that space.
I took advantage of every inch of space by hanging my four vintage, floral suitcases by size on the wall. This not only shows of their great patterns but provides more storage for out of season accessories like gloves, beanies, wool scarves, etc.
I was stumped on how to display my enamel pin collection until I realized I could just pin them onto the back of a pretty quilt square Brett's grandma gave me. There was just enough wall space left and I only had to make one hole in the wall.
I almost stopped at making one little nook in the basement pretty but then realized it would be simple to create a little curtain of sorts to cover the ugly sink and water treatment equipment. Once that was out of sight I realized our full length mirror was still boxed and that it would fit nicely at the other end of the room. Once that was in place I brought down the chair I also found at the same secret thrift spot in Missouri and paid only $3 for, added a basket to hold my belts, and strung up the wire basket turned lamp shade that I've used in my studio spaces for the last four years.
I'm still using dresser space upstairs for unmentionables, work out clothes, and t-shirts and jeans but now I won't have to deal with piles of clean clothes draped on top of it because there is no place for them. It's like a Christmas present to myself!
Best of all, I didn't have to spend a fortune. The most expensive project was the clothes rack but it's something I know I'll always utilize in the future and the rest were either quite affordable little DIY's or thrifted. I'm sure we'll probably bring in our little trampoline or set up a coloring area so the kids can enjoy hanging out in this happy room, too. Let's just hope we don't have a spider problem!
Yikes! Cover that thing up.
It was a lot of work but now I actually want to go spend time in my basement! Ruby's already been through trying on flats, rearranging the jewelry, and walking around with a purse on her shoulder like she owns the place. It's so fun for me to see her pretending to play dress up because I know exactly how she feels.
I hope you've enjoyed this little peek into my mini basement makeover. What kind of closet space do you have? What does your dream closet look like?