When it comes to home improvement projects I'm
frustratingly charmingly impulsive.
When Dan and I were first married we moved into a small split level that boasted a
tacky vintage 70s flair. That house was the giving tree of projects. Literally every surface cried out for updating. I’d get a wild hair and the next thing you know I’d start tearing apart a room, pulling out paint cans, ripping up flooring or rearranging furniture. Without much pre-planning or fore thought I’d dive in and go.
My “cut-once-measure-twice… things-are-fine-the-way-they-are” husband would
freak out gently question my motives and do what he could to slow me down or redirect my efforts. Since I had momentum and motivation on my side, I’d usually win
I look back and chuckle, but these DIY (do-it-yourself) projects—that inevitably required Dan to get involved—created heaps of conflict in the early years of our marriage. My impulsivity trod over his need to plan and prepare. The end results usually turned out OK, but our clashing work styles needed a makeover!
We're in a new house now that doesn't cry out for updating, but once a DIYer, always as DIYer, and we've done plenty of projects here too, thankfully with less conflict and more pre-planning. But there are still times I’ll wake up with a wild hair, needing to tackle a project RIGHT THIS VERY MOMENT.
Monday morning was such a day.
Eleven years ago when we moved into our house, one of the most exciting features were not just one, but two walk-in closets. His and hers. After years of tiny closets, I thought I’d died and gone to heaven. This feeling of bliss lasted for about five years. Somewhere in the last six years, though, it began to dawn on me that the closet organizers didn’t provide much in the way of organizing—as evidenced by the chaos of clothes and "stuff."
I thought a closet redo would cost a small fortune so I lived with the clutter.
I guess eleven years was my limit for living with it because I woke up on Monday and HAD to install a new closet system. Right then.
I headed to Home Depot with a handy plan I’d done on the internet and searched for the supplies on my list. Guess what? They didn’t cost a fortune. The total was about $170.
Once home and ready to get to work I hit a snag. In all the excitement I hadn’t considered I had to remove everything in my closet first. Let me tell you, after a decade that was A LOT of stuff! Besides way too many clothes, I found an old bridesmaid dress, my first business suit, my high school varsity jacket, boxes of mementos, old purses and a Christmas present I bought years ago and “lost” in my closet.
If you look closely, you’ll see a dog amid the piles
To help me tread through the pandemonium, I called in the one person I know who could help—my daughter. After hours of watching TLC and HGTV she’s a style/makeover expert.
(Note to self: Be careful what you wish for.) As she picked through piece after piece I had to endure a constant stream of fashion condemnation as the “no” pile grew from a hill to a mountain.
“Mom! Are you kidding me? I never want to see you wear that again!”
“Those are hideous! Did you really wear pants at your waist?”
“You seriously paid money this?”
“Mom, this is why they have stores, so you can buy NEW clothes!”
I pleaded for some sentimental favorites, but reluctantly relinquished most of the items voted out of the closet. *sniff*
Then I hit the second snag. At 5:00 p.m., with only one shelf installed, I realized if I didn't finish the project enough to start hanging things Dan and I would have no where to sleep since our bed was covered in mountains of clothes.
Well, if I do one thing well, it's persevering through a project. I worked diligently all evening and by about 12:30 a.m. declared it a success. Not only was shelving installed, I'd cleared off our bed and made s a path to walk though the room.
Today I finished up with my favorite part—giving everything a home in its new abode. Of course, this included a trip to Lowe’s for some storage baskets. (Is it just me, or do you get excited walking through the home organizing department?)
So, there you have it. It was an intense project, but I’m thrilled with the results…and except for two things that needed cutting, I did it all by myself!
If you’re handy with a power screwdriver and laser level there’s no telling what you can accomplish. Sometimes you just have to dive in and do it.
Before ... I’d already removed the hanging clothes ...just look at the top shelf. Ugh!
After... aaah!... there's even empty space on the shelves