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A Closet Organizing System - Do-It-Yourself Or Call In The Pros?

Jan 23, 2008
Have you been investigating a closet organizing system that will set your budget back to medieval times? Are you wondering why you should spend more on your closets than on your kitchen cabinets?

Or maybe you've looked at several closet organizing systems and are frustrated because they are not as customized as you would like?

My spouse and I have been involved in do-it-yourself projects for years and recently completed a major remodel on our own. If you're wondering if a do-it-yourself closet organizing system is the way to go for you, here are some facts you need to consider that will help you decide.

-- Compare costs.

There was a time when do-it-yourself always meant saving money. But that's not true anymore. Do-it-yourself projects have become immensely popular and therefore, the options and costs have increased dramatically.

Do your homework. Figure out the type of closet organizing system you'll need, then compare:

-- the cost of purchasing one custom-made and having it installed by professionals.

-- The cost of purchasing one ready-made and installing it yourself.

-- The cost of building your own organizing system from scratch.

The good news is you have a lot of options available for this type of project so make the most of them.

I recently did an online search for "closet design" and "closet design software" and found some useful sites. If you need help getting started with the preliminary design portion of your closet makeover, this is a good place to start.

-- Do you have the tools?

If you already have a garage full of tools, a do-it-yourself closet organizing system makes a lot more sense. If that's not your situation, you'll need to take that fact into consideration. Tools are not cheap and it doesn't make sense to acquire a lot of them for only one closet makeover.

However, your tools (or lack of them) can help you make your decision about what type of closet project you can tackle. A pre-made closet organizing system that simply needs to be installed in your closet will only require simple hand tools such as screwdrivers, a drill, a level, etc. But a from-scratch, fully customized closet system will require several power tools and the space to use them.

Which one sounds like you and your situation?

-- Enlist help.

I've read several do-it-yourself books on all kinds of projects and I always chuckle when I see the pictures of a person doing the project alone. Unless you're an octopus, you're going to need some help! An extra set of hands is often smart and always handy! Make sure you have a willing helper on board before you commit to doing your closet makeover on your own.

-- Customize.

The beauty of do-it-yourself is that you can often customize your work to fit your needs exactly. Or at least MORE exactly than off-the-rack solutions. Using unfinished pieces will allow you to coordinate your final project with the room's decor. For example, custom means you decide how many shelves and where they fit...plus how much weight they can support.

The internet offers a wealth of do-it-yourself information and it's simple to locate an appropriate forum and find out what solutions other do-it-yourselfers have discovered works. The library is also a great resource that costs nothing but your time. Some excellent resources I can recommend for do-it-yourself closet or storage projects are the following.

-- "Reader's Digest Storage and Shelving Solutions" with the editors of "The Family Handyman" magazine. (Copyright 2006)

-- "Black and Decker Build Your Own Custom Closet". (Copyright 2007)

-- "Sunset Smart Closet Makeovers" by Cynthia Overbeck Bix (Copyright 2006)

These books also offer excellent advice about the planning and designing of your closet organizing system and will give you a good feel for the tools you'll need to complete your closet project.

Frankly, even if you end up hiring out your closet make-over, books like these will help you talk intelligently with your closet contractor and ensure you end up with a final project you love.

A closet organizing system can be an excellent do-it-yourself project if you take the time to properly plan your tools and costs, enlist help, and decide on the level of customization you want.

And the satisfaction of saying "I did it myself" isn't bad either.
About the Author
Colleen Langenfeld has been parenting for over 26 years and helps other moms enjoy mothering more at http://www.paintedgold.com . Visit her website and learn more about the basics of a closet organizing system today.
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