So we’ve had this incredible eye sore in our entryway since the very beginning of our house renovation. We can blame me and the epic lack of communication with our electrician remains a VERY sore spot for me because it apparently never occurred to anyone that we needed to discuss the location of the new panels SO they ended up right here, right by our front door. Ugly. Ugly. Ugly. Horrible eye sore that I’ve been planning and scheming to get covered up this entire time. Outside the house it looks just as horrible, a nice electrical conduit welcome greeting for anyone coming in but unless I win the lottery some time and want to hire someone to undertake the immense (and extraordinarily costly) task of moving the panels, all I can do is make the best of this ugly situation. Of course, my plan began with the idea that I wanted to make a barn door closet, as I’ve got several wonderful old barn doors laying around 🙂 So, this is where I started.
NOTE: Our final walk-through Electrical inspection was AFTER this was built and we passed without incident. On a related note MN’s electrical code is considered one of the harshest in the country and this wasn’t an issue. But, before building anything in your own home make sure and check your local state electrical codes. Thanks!
I went to my stash of left over 2x4s and 2x6s and managed to build the entire frame out of scrap lumber from the house renovation. A barn door closet has to first start with a good frame! Really, I just built a little room.
It is not the exact right way to frame in a closet, but it is sturdy and level (screwed to the ceiling joists and the floor) so I’m ok with it not being perfect in wall building standards – it certainly isn’t holding up the house or anything. I used a 2×6 on the right side of the door frame to give extra support for our old barn door. Like so many things in the house this old door was actually the old wood shed door and, amazingly, this is the old wood shed that is now our entryway. We just took down the wall between it and the house and added a floor as it all shared the same roof line and, suddenly, we had 200 square feet of more living space. It used to be my Grandma would step out the front door, turn a step to her right and go right through this old barn door to access the wood shed, so, this old barn door is literally only about two feet from where it used to be 🙂 Here it is:
I was planning out this closet to always incorporate the beautiful coat rack we were given as a wedding gift as we literally had no where else to put it. So, we had to cut the barn door down and I had to make the door opening only 68 inches tall. Anyone but me and anyone shorter then me will be ducking to get in here from now on but, because I’m our electrician for everything but installing panels, I’ll be the only one in here so, no biggie.
I got to work then covering the entire frame with leftover bead board. If you’ve every worked with ply bead before (plywood that looks like bead board) you know you only have two sides with a tongue and groove to work with so, to not have any seems, you need to keep your wits about you. If I had just bought full sheets of new ply bead this would have been a much quicker task, however, I saw no reason not to utilize the scraps we had and, low and behold, it was enough to cover our entire barn door closet!
Some one, who shall remain nameless (me), forgot to take pictures after I covered the entire cabinet in trim! Amazingly, I had enough scrap leftover from trimming the house and out in the barn to do all but one piece of all of that trim! So, for a cost of all of $2 I grabbed a 6 foot 1×4 at our local lumber yard after work and completed all of the trim using our air compressor and brad nailer. Then I got to painting! If you’re going to believe me when I say that painting bead board is easy then I have a bridge to sell you 😉 I did two coats and then hung up the barn door and our beautiful coat rack to finally complete our barn door closet!
We are stoked!!! Finally we have a place to hang our coats and leave our shoes after work at the end of the day!! Our dining room is to the left there in the picture so, inevitably, every day we would come home and our coats would be hung on a dining room chair and, pretty soon, it looked like our entire closet was hanging out around our dining room table. Not good. Now, we come home to our barn door closet, have a spot for our shoes, have a place to hang our daily coats and, a place for our guests to hang their coats too! Yay!