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Friday, November 7, 2014

Friends - There's never enough storage

When I last posted the progress of my friends' laundry room, we had just completed work on the base cabinet and the two litter box houses that flank that cabinet.  Lu has since painted the cabinet the same color as the trim and the trim has been reinstalled.  I took a day off work and spent it at their house to finish building 2 shelving units while Chris and Lu were both at work. 

Storage by the long wall with windows

The base cabinet is made of plywood, but I built the shelving units with pine.  I started with topping the cabinet with 2 lengths of 1 x 12 pine.  I had planned to attach the shelves to the board closest to the wall from underneath so screws would not show.  This would also give Lu the option of staining the top instead of painting it if she wanted.  I also started on creating the trim around the front to which we will attach doors.

I notched out the back board to accomodate the newly added trim.


Next I built up, starting with the sides.  I rounded the top for esthetics.  This was one point I wasn't sure Lu would like.  I did it for two reasons - 1) with no shelf at the top, it seemed to look unfinished, and 2) I wanted to soften the room which originally started out with too many boxy shapes and lines.  Finally, I added adjustable shelving.  More on this when we continue with the other shelving unit.


I used up all the pine I could on this unit, so I cut the doors from the plywood.  They will be installed at a later date after they get painted.

Lu and Chris followed up this work with paint and purchases.  They now have a black bin for dirty rags and a white one for clean.  The litter boxes are installed inside their new cabinets, although Lu mentioned to me that the cats are not being neat and tidy so she will be looking for different boxes to store in the cabinets.  Finally, Chris cut a notch in the upright so the outlet cord would fit through.  They're going to attach the cord to the wall below the windowsill, once they get the herbs and spices relocated.

Storage by the door

The next shelving unit was a bit of a miscommunication.  I had always envisioned a unit as wide as the one I built.  Over the phone, I had asked for a line to be drawn on the wall to tell me how wide to go, but when I arrived, no line was to be found.  So I went ahead with the design in my head!  Now I know what goes on in the minds of trades people who work in your home, but can't get in touch with you to get details.  I left a call at Lu's place of work, but with no answer and a lunch break later, I continued my work!

The box on the shelf was the only item I knew had to fit.  Lu wanted the unit to be just wide enough to hold this box and allow her to reach in and pull it out.  Since we didn't discuss details (vertically or horizontally), she ended up with more storage.  That can't be too bad, right?

Fortunately, it was very pleasant to work outside.  Below you can see that my drill bit has blue tape on it to show me how deep to drill the holes on the side of the shelves which will hold metal shelf pins (picture below).  The first time I drilled I used a scrap piece of wood lined up carefully with the edge of the shelf and drilled straight through that continuing partially into the actual shelf side piece.  Then I was able to reuse the scrap piece on the other side (always on the inside of the entire unit) so that I had holes evenly and consistently spaced. 

The shelf pins fit into the holes and have a portion that sticks out to hold the actual shelf board.  You need 4 for each shelf.  I got these at Menards for 99 cents for a package of 4.

I had attempted to give her sliding panels as doors, but these did not work out well.  My ability to route grooves in wood with our cheap old table saw left the grooves small and not perfectly straight.  Lu was able to turn the unit around with the grooves by the back wall and just start loading up the supplies she needed to store.


Lu added a coat rack she had on hand that was never used.

The metal baskets were purchased from Target and the hanger holder on the lower right is the one Lu made to store stacked hangers that are easy to grab.

Chris purchased the gray rug shown here and the one that is by the door.  My guess is that the gray accents will keep the slightly violet walls from looking violet/pinkish.

On 10/25, I received this status straight from Lu:

Finally got my JoAnn’s coupons!  I bought the curtain material last week for 50% off.  Picked up the cushions for the window seats today, again for 50% off (coupon was for 40% off, but foam was on sale for 50% off, so I used the 40% coupon on another item for another project.).  On Monday, I’ll be getting the material for the cushions – another 50% off coupon.  GOTTA LOVE IT!
We discovered that the folding hanger rack is not going to work.  The clothes will be touching the floor where we intended to install it, and it won’t work above the freezer.  So we’re going to have to come up with another solution for a folding hanging system.  Chris says he has something in mind.
So, the final work on the list:
  1. Make and install curtains.
  2. Make cushion coverings.
  3. Make skirt for lower washer/dryer shelf.
  4. Cut opening for cat cabinet doors and install.
  5. Paint and install rag bin cabinet doors.
  6. Make and install folding hanging system.
  7. Make, paint and install trim for kitchen window and kitchen door.
  8. Install light fixture.
  9. Purchase, paint and install baseboard.
Funny - that list doesn't look smaller than the one in my last post!  I'm heading over today to discuss budget and finishing up.  Hope you will check in with me in two weeks and as always send me your comments.

If anyone has questions on their own DIY projects or ideas for more challenges for me, let me know.

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