Sunday, November 13, 2011

The Happy Closet

When I thought of how to organize the closet mess that often ended up in the hall entrance, I started thinking of my grandmother's house.  When our large family gathered for Thanksgiving and Christmas, all the families would pile their jackets and coats on the hall banister.  It was a quick efficient system that got the coats up and out of the way.  That was my inspiration.  I wanted a big way to hold several jackets at a time. 
After shopping for closet organizers which ran between $15 and $60 for a coat tree, I found myself at the Ace Hardware and thought I would look down their aisles for some ideas.  I started out in the bathroom fixtures where they had several types of hanging options, but they seemed a little too small.  The regular hardware had a good selection with all sizes and colors of hooks, but again I wanted something really sturdy.  I saved the best for last - the gardening section!  There I found forged iron hooks meant for hanging baskets, but wouldn't they work perfectly for schoolbags AND jackets AND whatever else my kids could load onto them?  They are each about 6 inches deep, nicely rounded, and sturdy enough to hold just about anything!  I bought four and one larger wall hook I thought I could use for my handbags.  It was perfect!  So these were the items I would use to transform the closet:
A few baskets, a boot tray, some hooks, and an old metal trashcan my husband made in woodshop in high school!  It's perfect for umbrellas and yoga mats.

I hadn't planned to paint, but I found a can of Mystic non-toxic paint that was a mistint.  After coming up with a cool harlequin design to add some life to the closet, I measured taped and painted.  I loved the look it was creating, but there was a secret in this closet that I neglected to acknowledge - the previous owners had painted over wallpaper! 
So, we nixed that plan and painted a solid color with black trim.  

The closet has a whole new appearance that sort of reminds me of the coat room I used to work in at Charlie Browns.  I was hoping for a cabinet-y look, kind of pottery-barn-ish, but it's not really that either.  The black might be a bit much, but it goes with the hooks, which are working out perfectly. 

The baskets lighten everything up and the tags add a personal touch.  My plan is not to leave the house without my green grocery bags, but that never happens!  

My pocket organizer with four-letter words!  (Thanks, Joanne!)  The words read "love, grow, know, hope, live, pray."   I was going to make it rhyme because my kids would be all over that, but I messed up the K and the L...  I tied black ribbons at the top to hide the nails.  Everyone loves them, even my husband!
No more mess on the hall floor... couldn't ask for more!

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