Category Archives: Home Improvement

A Kind of Success

I have completed a project! That’s right, finished. I now have an upright shelving unit in my bedroom closet on which to store my shirts! No matter that what I was trying to do was install a shelf along the back wall of the closet, which is still not even started. Its still a success and I intend to treat it like one.

My Enabler in Chief

I had to recruit the assistance of my enabler in chief.

This is how a lot of my bad ideas end.  With a successful completion of a project entirely different from the one I intended to do.  But hey, it looks awesome, and I now have more storage, and it is organized like a BOSS, which is what I wanted.  Its now 10PM and I don’t really have time to finish putting together the other new shelves I bought… but of course, I am going to do so anyways, because sleeping is overrated.

I did it!

Doesn't it look great?

Addendum:

This project can be upgraded to FULL SUCCESS.  The new cabinets went together without a hitch, and thirty minutes later, I’ve got me that shelf in my closet I’d been wanting.  Complete with baskets, bins, and whatnot.  How ’bout that, eh?

both shelves

Look at that. Two shelves for the price of one. Sort of.

The finished shelf

At long last, I have a shelf! Added bonus: Monkey!

Feels good to be done.

Miss part of the story?  Part I  |  Part II  |  Part III

Well that didn’t work.

Scope creep has nothing on me.

So, you remember that shelving unit I was going to put in my closet with cloth drawers in it, that the drawers don’t fit in?  The one I was going to buy a second one of?  Yeah.  Um.  About that.

I actually made it to the hardware store and bought another shelving unit.  Then I went to Target to check out bins.  At that point it became very painful clear that there were absolutely NO bins that would A) fit  B) in reasonable colors that wouldn’t look awful and C) be sold in the quantity I would require.

Out of curiosity I went to the next aisle to look at the shelving units.  They had one that was perfect.  Made to fit the cloth boxes, and in the correct orientation.  CRAP!  So, after some hemming and hawing, I decided to buy three of those shelves, which will fit about the same space as the original two shelves.  The shelf that is currently being built, I took a wild guess and said it will probably fit, upright, in another part of my closet.  Maybe.

She's Mocking Me

I think she's mocking me.

For those of you playing the home game, that makes six cabinets I’ve bought now, one which is halfway assembled, two I’m returning.  The three that are actually going to serve as my shelf – which you might remember was the original project – are sitting in boxes, mocking me with their cold cardboard stares.

I have two shelves to return and none of the things I bought are going to the places where I was planning to put them.  I forgot all about stacking wood with a friend who was coming over.  I gave in to scope creep twice.  I started yet another project, editing video of me putting together the shelves.  The shelf I had been assembling is going to go somewhere that will require me to rearrange my closet for it to fit.  It is now 8PM, and I’m updating my blog and eating dinner instead of finishing any of the things that need doing.  Bad Ideas?  Ohhhhhh yes.

The Closet Of Madness, Act I | The Closet of Madness, Act II | The Closet of Madness, Act III: The incomprehensible conclusion

The project is going sideways. Already.

I got distracted.   Moments after hitting ‘Post’, a tuna fish sandwich magically appeared in my lap, as prepared by my glorious enabler of a husband.  He asked if I wanted one and I forgot that I’d said yes.

I have successfully accomplished eating a tuna fish sandwich without getting distracted.  GO ME!

Now what was I doing?  Oh yeah, my closets.

I managed to gather my manic need to do All of the things, and ambled out to the car to procure my supplies.  Because I am easily distracted, and also because I really want to blog about this, I stopped to take pictures.  Look!  Pictures!

All my supplies, at least til I go buy more.

A bucket.  On my head.

I got distracted while bringing in the dust pan I bought, and had to take a picture with it on my head.

You know what would be good planning?  Reading the box to find out what tools I need, before I take out all of the stuff from the box and get started.  I announced to my personal live-in enabler that I was going to do that, and then promptly got distracted by the NEED to go measure the closet to see how many shelves I can fit.

The closet is 90 inches.  That means I can fit two of these great shelving units, which means I’m probably going to go buy another one.

Also, it has become apparent that i was not thinking too clearly about how this shelving unit was going to work on its side instead of upright.  The shelves aren’t going to just stand for being shoved in and propped up, they’ll flop and wobble all over.  I’m pretty sure that’s not what shelves are supposed to do.  I’m probably going to have to nail them in place to keep them together.  I have a brad nailer, so yay!  An excuse to play with more power tools.

This project is already getting complicated.

I never did end up fetching tools – after unpacking the whole box and reading the instructions I decided I couldn’t be bothered to fetch tools and made my enabler go get them for me.

During construction I ran into a few other snags.  Shockingly.  Like the fact that the cloth bins don’t actually fit inside.  Guess I’m going to have to buy some smaller ones.

So, off to the store I go, again!  The plan is to buy one more shelving unit, and new cloth bins.  I actually got measurements for the bins this time.  And some safety glasses to wear while I use the brad nailer.  I’m pretty sure I don’t need any other things.  I’m returning the shelf brackets, having given up on my original (simple) plan of hanging the shelf.  I’m bringing the enabler, so maybe that will keep me from any additional scope creep.

Previous: The project’s innocent start | Next: Doomy doom doom doom.

Home Improvement Day. Apparently.

Hi, I’d like one day pass to Bad Idea Land.   Yes, the full admission, including the water park.  Thanks.

I should have known that today was going to be a Bad Idea kind of day by the way I had the urge do do SOMETHING from the moment I woke up, but no specific things in mind.  That’s usually a sign.

The project I’ve settled on is hanging this shelf in my closet.  It isn’t actually a shelf, it is two sturdy pieces of really nice scrap wood.  I’ve been planning to hang them in my closet for months, if only I had brackets for them.  Today, I suddenly have the overwhelming urge to hang them.  Immediately.  I cannot bear to live another day in a closet without a shelf!

Reasons this is a Bad Idea:

Impulsive approach.

How many other important projects am I ignoring in favor of doing this very minor one?  No clue, don’t care.  Those will get done eventually, probably. I can’t think about them, the pressure to do this thing is too great.  Or at least it was, before I got distracted by blogging about it.

Not taking thorough enough measurements.

I got the depth of the shelves and the height. But of course, since I was just buying brackets for the shelf, I didn’t know I’d need to know the length of the wall.

I also have no idea how many studs there are in the wall, where they are located, or how many brackets I need for the length of shelf I’ve got.  I didn’t really think about that.

Making assumptions.

My shelves are 10.5″ deep.  I got a bracket designed for 14-18″ shelves.  I’m assuming I can rip the second shelf smaller and put them both on the same bracket… maybe.  Only time will tell.

In-store scope creep.

I had a very, very simple plan.  Go to the hardware store, buy some brackets to put up my shelf.  And then my eye was caught by shelving units.  Uh oh.  They were so pretty!  And they are the right height, if I set them on their side instead of using them upright!   The price tag swayed me briefly, but I was able to talk myself into it with the promise of how awesome my closet is going to be.   It will be organized like a BOSS.

And OOH PRETTY, I can put some of those cool fabric bins I’ve always wanted in them, and they are right next to each other on the shelf!  So what if that is another factor of scope creep. I swear, they design these stores just for people like me who are easily distracted OOH SHINY.

Vague plans.

Gotta be honest, I don’t really know what I’m doing.  Generally I have a plan.  Put together the two shelving units and put them in the closet, and then put in the brackets and mount the shelf above them.  Ish.  I may rest the shelf on the top of the lower one, or mount it five inches above, or more… I don’t really know.  We’ll see.  Something will happen!  I might even ditch the shelf and the brackets, and go for just these shelving units, in which case I may need to go back to the store and buy another. If it’ll fit.  But I have no clue how much wall space I have!

Getting distracted.

The purchases are still out in my car, and I’m sitting on the couch blogging about it.  This is TOTALLY IMPORTANT, you guys.  Seriously.  I swear I’ll get to it, those things aren’t going to sit in my car and/or closet for the next four months before I actually get around to doing the work, probably.

Forgot to account for important factors.

Like the need for screws, both to attach the shelf to the brackets, and the brackets to the walls.  I see another trip to the hardware store in my future.  I probably have screws, maybe.  We’ll see.  We tend to pack-rat that sort of shiny thing, and the odds are good that I have some in close to the right size.  And bolt cutters.

Things I did right:

  • Remembering to bring my measuring tape to the store.   Note that I don’t say INTO the store, I left it out in the car.  Oops?
  • Remembering to measure the depth of the shelves, and the available space below the kneewall.  Though to be fair I only remembered to get the height because the husband suggested it.
  • Took the time to think about what items I want to put on the shelves, and pictured them on the shelves.  It looked great in my head.  I have no idea if those things will fit on the shelves how I want, but I’ll figure that out.
  • Talked myself out of buying two shelving units, which might not fit in the space available.  Although I did buy another smaller one, which will definitely fit, but I might want to put it elsewhere in the closet.

Alright!   I’m off to go put some things together and see what happens!  Will I finish the project before I get bored of it?  Will the need to go on another run to the hardware store make me lose interest, or bankrupt me?  Who knows!

Wish me luck, Internet.  I’ll let you know what happens.

Next up: Project planning iceberg ahead.