Young House Rage

This weekend we finally tackled a home project that we intended to do within months of moving into our place. Fast forward two years and we finally gathered the courage got fed up enough to actually tackle it: we did a complete overhaul of our bedroom closets. Our bedroom is pretty tiny, as in we have a bed against one wall and a bookcase against the opposing wall and you can just barely walk between the two. So for clothing storage we are limited to the two built-in closets, each a mere three feet wide. Three feet sounds decent, until you have to fit all of your clothing into it. They each had a couple of shelves but were terribly designed, forcing us to employ a patchwork of drawers, standing shelving units and levitating spells. They also had disgusting white brown carpets and the walls featured a bland rainbow of all the paint colours ever used in our bedroom.

The Before: Messy, frustrating closet

So this weekend, down came the existing shelves and carpet to make room for new paint, vinyl flooring with white trim, and built-in Rubbermaid customizable shelving.

Wow, I just reduced two and a half days of back breaking labour into one sentence. Damn DIY.

The After: Pretty, non-offensive closet

John’s closet – even Cassie is impressed

It all sounds so neat and tidy doesn’t it? Well it’s only because I’m leaving one part out. Anyone notice what is missing from the “after” pictures? Yes, it’s the devil reincarnated mirror doors.

We have disliked these mirror doors from the get-go. They are ancient, clunky, block the entry to the bathroom when open, are covered in paint stains, and generally ugly. However, we have yet to come up with a better option for this space, and new bi-fold mirror doors run about $180 each. So. Inspired by the ease with which Sherry of Young House Love spray paints all kinds of things in their house back to pristine condition, I decided I too can be awesome like her.

I am decidedly not awesome.

You guys. This project almost broke me. As in it turned me into a screaming, blubbering, scratching, foaming at the mouth lunatic who was about to smash the mirrors into a thousand pieces just so she could then use one to stab herself with.

Temper? What temper?

Taping newspaper to carefully cover every non-edge surface of two bi-fold mirror doors (which is an awkwardly configured 99% of them) is one of the single most frustrating tasks I have ever attempted.  Oh it all started off smoothly enough – me in the back patio humming along to Adele and the Dirty Heads, taping and patching together the paper merrily. It was right around the 400th time I had to add more tape to keep the paper from fluttering in the wind that I started to lose it. My neighbors also probably started to get a bit scared at this point with the low growling eminating from our side of the fence. And when – hours later – I finally got to spraying, I screwed up by not following Sherry’s Number One Rule of Spray Painting: many thin coats. Many. Thin. Coats. The metallic colour I was using wasn’t providing much coverage of the old paint smudges so I got a bit trigger happy and ended up with drippy globs of paint everywhere.

And that’s when everything went white and I found myself lying face down on our bed screaming I HATE THE MIRROR DOORS!! DAMN THE FUCKING DOORS!! DIE MIRRORS DIE!!

And then John made me stop for lunch and a beer. He actually had to make me. I would have wrestled with those mirrors to the death.

This is where they are now, leaning against the wall of the office, until I regain my sanity. Or until we find something else for our closets and I get to send them where they belong. Hell. The trash. Craigslist.

This does not bode well for the bathroom project.


Posted on October 5, 2011, in Life and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 14 Comments.

  1. i have ruined many a diy project with a trigger happy spray paint finger.

  2. Hi Nina! I clicked my way over to your blog from APW and decided to stick around. :)
    I love YoungHouseLove, and Sherry definitely makes things look easy, when in reality… well, you know.

    Have you considered hanging curtains on a tension rod instead of closet doors? Sherry did this for Clara’s room, and I also did this many years ago in my dorm room because the bifold doors that were on my closet took up too much space when opened. And curtains could be so pretty, too… Anyway, just a thought. Good luck with the rest of the project! The closets look infinitely better already.

    • Hey welcome, and thanks for commenting!

      Aahh curtains… I love replacing bi-fold doors with curtains. I did it at our old place and it makes a huge difference. But John isn’t sold on the idea and he can’t even explain why – “curtains are just so… curtain-y.” I’m going to have to work on convincing him.

      • I was going to suggest curtains but damn, I was beat to the punch! I, like Liz, have ruined many (MANY) a DIY project by not being patient enough with the spray paint. For Get-Er-Done ladies like myself nothing beats real-slap-it-on-with-a-brush paint. Good luck with the doors! Perhaps just leave the newspaper decoupaged to the front?

      • John is convinced we’re going to finish those mirror doors, but I don’t know if I have it in me. I’m still hoping to convince him about the curtains. And I might not have a choice about decoupaging the mirrors with the newspaper… I think they might be partially stuck but I don’t really want to check to find out.

  3. duuuuuuude! I am laughing, but I feel your pain. ALWAYS take a break for lunch and a beer (I like to have a few, just enough to feel too lazy to continue with the damn project I was upset about to begin with)

  4. You are hilarious! Why do they make DIY seem so easy? I think it’s a conspiracy, because all it makes ME want to do is cry.

    I love the way the organization turned out, though. Makes me want to tackle our other closets.

    PS – I see that Canucks jersey tucked in there!

  5. Well, when I saw your before I was envious (our apt is 100 years old….so only a teeny closet in the bedroom, and I definitely like your after. I have never tried spray painted, but it scares me since I am pretty impatient about that kind of stuff.

    I do think fabric is a good possibility, and I also thought of Clara’s closet over at YHL. :)

    • Her closet is amazing! It’s strange to be jealous of a one year old’s closet isn’t it? well I don’t care, I want a pretty patterned wall and a reading nook in mine!

  6. And this is why I hate DIY. It always ends in tears and beer for me. I should just learn and go straight for the beer. (Which is exactly what I did with wedding spray paint DIY. I handed it to Jason – who actually has patience and art skill – and I conquered the excel lists and beer.)

    Also, now I want your closet organization. Minus the two days of pain.

    • I have to say, the majority of the pain came from dealing with the floors and walls – taking out old carpet, putting in the new floor, and painting. If your closet isn’t totally gross like ours was, the shelving part itself was easy. You could do it in an afternoon. For real.

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