Hiring a professional to plan and construct a closet for you is usually the easiest way to deal with this endeavor. However, it’s also expensive, time-consuming, and sometimes even risky depending on the level of experience of the said professional. Instead of going through all of these nuisances, you can take a moment, read our DIY guide, and build a walk-in closet yourself. It will cost you far less money than to hire someone, and on top of that, you can customize the project the way you want.
The best thing about this particular project is the fact that one doesn’t need a lot of previous experience with carpentry and heavy-duty tools in order to make it happen. All you need to do is follow the instructions written below, and you’ll end up with a versatile and well-made closet that will more than likely solve storage issues as well as improve the overall aesthetic appeal of the room.
Here are the steps one should follow –
Things you need
Before you even start measuring and drawing your project, make sure you have all the necessary tools and components needed for this project.
- 2x4 boards
- Tape measure
- Circular saw
Once you’re done with the construction, you’ll need the following to complete the task –
Once you get all the necessary components required for this build, the next step is to prepare everything or else you may stumble upon some issues along the way.
Choose a location
This particular step is probably the easiest of them all. Make sure you find a good spot for your new closet and look to account for as many variables as you can. That way, you don’t have to worry about deviations, compatibility, corners, and etcetera. There are usually two options when it comes to choosing a location. The first one is to frame off an alcove in the room. However, if the room has an open layout, framing a space along the existing walls is probably a much better idea as it saves time, effort, and materials.
Figure out the layout
It is of utmost importance that you meticulously plan out the layout in order to achieve the best results possible. If you’re not certain about what to pay attention to, ask yourself some of these questions:
- What am I going to store in this closet?
- Am I going to use swinging or folding doors?
- Is there going to be a non-storage space in? (for example a place for folding clothes)
- Which storage options do I include in the build? (hangers, shelves, rods)
While these questions seem pretty straightforward, you would be surprised by the number of people that oversee these factors and consequently end up having no success with later steps.
Some other useful tips
The double-hang space concept is highly recommended, especially if you’re looking to use the full potential of the free space. By building separate departments for tops and bottoms, you’ll alleviate the process of choosing matching clothes by a lot. In simpler words, instead of going through numerous clothing pieces in order to find a matching color or design, you will be able to categorize them in advance and save yourself quite a bit of time.
On top of that, make sure to leave at least one inch of free space between items. When it comes to some bulkier ones, like coats and winter clothes, don’t hesitate to leave two inches of free space.
The building process
Now that you’ve finished the preparation steps, it’s time to get your hands dirty. The first thing you should do is take care of the carpet. Pull it up and mark the spots that are going to be covered by your new wall. Once you’re done with the project, you will cut those patterns out so that they aren’t in the way.
In order to properly anchor the new wall, you have to find the studs in any existing wall you’re going to be using. Once you do, draw a straight line from the floor to the ceiling by using a 2x4 boards and a pencil.
Constructing the frame
The first thing you should do is cut two 2x4 beams to the desired length. Those two are going to be the header and footer of your new wall. Once you cut these to length, mark the spacing for the studs with a pencil or permanent market. The rule of thumb here is to leave sixteen inches of space between two studs.
Once you’re done marking those, cut a piece of 2x4 beams for each of the studs you’ve marked on the header and footer to the desired height. It’s also a good idea to add two additional studs to your overall count and use them as end caps.
Nailing the whole thing together might seem intimidating, but it’s actually a pretty simple process. Just make sure you use the level and keep all the angles at 90 degrees. It’s crucial to build straight angles because you’ll otherwise jeopardize the whole process by misaligning the beams.
The process of constructing a wall that contains a door opening is very similar to the aforementioned frame concept. The only difference is in the marking. Instead of putting a mark on every sixteen inches of space, you should first mark the space on the footer and header where the door will go. Once you’ve done that, proceed with the marking using the aforementioned method but skip the space that’s foreseen for the door.
Installing the walls
By now you should have a wooden construction that resembles a wall on your floor. The next step is crucial and make sure you do it right or else you’ve done everything in vain.
Lift the wall and line it up with the marks you’ve put on an existing wall. Make sure everything is straight and aligned. The easiest way to do it is with a level. In case you need to adjust it a bit, use shims.
Anchor the wall by nailing between the studs on both the footer and header.
If you’re planning on adding structural support for shelves, cut pieces of 2x4 beams and nail them between the existing studs. When it comes to supporting, most people advocate the “the more, the merrier” rule, but it’s not always the best way. The important thing is to keep everything lined up and make sure the structural integrity is on point.
You’re almost done
If you followed the steps above, you probably have a basic wooden construction mounted on your existing walls already. The next few steps are purely for aesthetic purposes.
The next things you should do are – install the drywall, mount a door, hang the shelves, and paint the whole thing. In case you’re planning on putting lights into the closet, we strongly recommend hiring a licensed electrician instead of messing with it yourself.
You’ve successfully created a custom-made closet!
Congratulations, you have made a brand-new closet without spending a fortune to hire other people. Bear in mind, you are probably going to experience some issues along the way, especially if it’s your first time doing something like this. However, it’s important that you don’t give up because there is a simple solution for most of the potential problems. The best way to tackle a project like this is to devote a full weekend to it and take things slowly.