How to build a closet organizer {post 1} The plans

Oh my gosh the glitches today!  I’m working hard on Pip’s closet organizer, but all sorts of tiny things (some not as tiny) keep happening.  The final thing was when my hearing protection snapped in half as I was putting it on my head and it cut me a little bit.  I had been wondering lately if they make them with mp3 capabilities–guess I’ll be looking into that really soon!  Until then, I’m going to begin the How to Build a Closet Organizer series with Post 1:  The Plans.

Now I know I’ve said it before, but it bears repeating:  Don’t rely solely on these drawings and chicken scratches to build your own!  So often I’ll catch a mistake I’ve made on the drawings right before I cut and don’t take the time to correct it–or I change a part completely.   This is to show what I begin with.  You would want to customize this for your own project anyway…

First off, I did play around with some different scenarios on the Easy Closet website.  Pip’s closet is not very big, so there weren’t a lot of options, but it was still fun.  I’m keeping it in mind when I redo my closet.  And I researched how Ana White did her closet organizer as well as followed along with Sandra as she built her executive closet.

This time I chose to use graph paper to sketch it out.  Ridiculously, often times I’ll be surprised when the proportions of my project don’t jive with what I’ve got in my mind and it’s all because what I’ve got in my mind is my sketch.  My very primitive sketch.  Graph paper gives me a much more accurate depiction.

Drawer heights are approximate because I used scrap wood I already had for them.  It just depended on what widths I had in the scrap pile.  Here’s the plywood cuts I had on the 3/4″ Purebond birch plywood I used.  The squiggly equal signs mean “appoximately”.  The 6″ of leftover on the ends is not a true 6″ because I added .25″ to each 14″ cut.

I ended up buying a third sheet of ply for the shelves.  I was hoping I could find some way to use scraps for the shelves, but that didn’t work out.  I had Home Depot rip two 8′ lengths at 14″–the rest of the sheet I’ll use on another project.

I was really close on the cost estimate.  I spent $185 that first trip.  Then I realized the next day that I had only bought 4 drawer glides (glitch!).  I added another sheet of plywood at $45 for the shelves (but a good portion of that will go to another project) and a sixth drawer (which added another glide and drawer pull for $9.50 more) for a grand total of $240. gave me a price of $686.47 for a similar set up.  And by the way, another glitch was that the drawer glide I bought today for the 6th drawer wasn’t the right length.  Ugggh!

Here I am trying to figure out the drawer situation once I knew the dimensions I was using:

If you couldn’t tell, I need to buy a shower curtain for the kids’ bathroom.  That will be my next project after Pip’s room.

The next post in this series deals with shelf pin holes.  Hope you’ll join me!

About Pink Toes and Power Tools

I'm a DIY girl with a blog. Trying to complete one project before I jump into the next one!

7 responses to “How to build a closet organizer {post 1} The plans”

  1. Jaime Costiglio says :

    K I’m with you on this one, staring at our closets yesterday as they’re about to replace the carpet totally made me want to revamp (not to mention seeing Sandra’s Master Closet makes me drool). Great layout, can’t wait to see you jigging the shelf pins? and glides? I just got the Kreg jig as a gift so I’m only a beginner in the jig world with simple seams.


  2. Andi says :

    I’m trying to convince my husband to help me build a closet organizer instead of buying a Martha Stewart pre-maid one. I’ve done the Easy Closet online dimensions already but he still needs convincing! Yours looks great and I hope to have one done myself before long!


  3. Woodworking Newbie says :

    Great post! I discovered your site after looking at videos on Youtube. I appreciate your detail. I’ll definitely be using this to build an organizer for my daughter. Thanks!


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