I Love Lamp: Ikea Hacking My Way To A Dream Closet

First off I will begin with the confession that yes, I am mildly embarrassed that I have an entire room devoted to my closet. But I'm also SUPER EXCITED that I have an entire room devoted to my closet so that's that.

Once upon a time it had a loft for a twin bed that we demo'd

I then painted the room white--

--and basically procrastinated finishing it because it was... the wrong white. Which I'd just gone through with the bathroom so I was over it. 

In addition to not being too pleased with the twinge of blue in the white, I was also having trouble settling on a good lay out. I thought I'd wanted to have these pipe racks for all my dresses and exposed shelves for all my shoes, so I laid things out where they'd be... and lived like that for, oh, NINE MONTHS. This is the only photo evidence because I was so embarrassed:

Not pictured are the piles of shirts, pants, and sweaters to the right. Yes, actual piles. Very nicely folded, but piles on the floor nonetheless.

To be fair, I had a VERY BUSY summer and fall at the Inn. And it's hard to spend any time off putzing around in a closet when it could be spent swimming in the river or BBQing in the garden etc etc. 

But when we came back from Mexico I was like, "Enough of this shit." I ponied up and re-painted the room with the leftover (good) paint from the bathroom and while it was tedious it only took a few hours and it was much, MUCH better. More importantly though, I had the epiphany that I didn't want to look at all my clothes. That the whole exposed closet thing didn't feel boutiquey and cool. It felt loud and cluttered. I really like my clothes, but they look pretty bad all together. Fuzzy plaids with silky florals and such.

So I thought about getting a big armoire, or building shelves within the small closet. But I just couldn't picture what kind of armoire I'd want, or exactly how the shelves would work. So I thought about the other parts of the house that I like the best and what we've done there, like my home office:

Ikea hack with some barn wood! Of course! Duh. A thousand times duh. 

Luckily we had two white Ikea shelves from our studio back in Brooklyn collecting dust in the structure where we keep firewood because we were never quiiiite inspired enough to bring them to the dump. Lazy wins the day! So we brought them up and I cleaned them out thoroughly. 

And rather than trying to get a rod to stay in the shitty not-even-dry-wall situation within the small closet, we simply put one of the free standing Ikea racks we already had in it (which yes, required some mild disassembling):

Steven then braved the cold and went to the barn to make me some barn wood doors for the shelves.

Which we then attached with some pretty basic hinges et voila!

Between the two shelves I managed to store all my pants, shirts, sweaters, scarves, and summer shoes. (Did I mention Steven and I Marie Kondo'd our clothes over the summer? GAME CHANGER. Mother effing game changer guys. Get rid of everything that doesn't give you a little jolt of joy. Just do it!) I also bought some baskets I'd been coveting for a while now from Connected Goods to hold my socks and underwear. I put my jewelry in a few small containers I already owned and hung some necklaces on my lamp for easy untangled access. (Because oh my god how rage inducing is a tangled necklace, amiright?!)

By the window, over the radiator, we hung a simple shelf of one piece of barnwood and two L brackets to be my "vanity".

The bright natural light is amazing and terrifying. It keeps me rather religious about my skincare. 

My favorite part though, is my "boutique" table which was Steven's idea. We were standing in the room, trying to figure out the best flow and I said there was something missing. He was like, "What if you kept your boutique idea and had a little table with fancy lady things that you like on it?"

Yes, I'm pretty sure he said "fancy lady things". Or something just as frilly but either way he was totally right! It makes me feel like my closet is a fancy store, but everything I pick up I already own. Very gentle on the wallet you see.

As soon as he mentioned the table this was the exact shape/material I imagined-- white, shiny, circular, strong but delicate. And lucky for me, West Elm had this in stock and on sale!

I have yet to hang a curtain over the small closet door, but I'm thinking I'm going to use the material from this nice hammock we bought in Colombia a handful of years ago that proved to be more pretty than functional. I'll post a pic once that's up. 

So there it is! Unsurprisingly, having a nice closet has re-inspired me to dress with more care. To wear that chifon skirt even though it's twenty degrees (yes, with leggings under it), or put on a bright pop of lipstick and a bold bracelet if I'm layering myself in grey cashmeres. It can be easy to get in a jeans/sweater/winter boots rut out here. Here's to keeping that up!