I hope no one was hoping for a fast paced tale of dramatic home improvement here. (If so, can I recommend Manhattan-Nest.com?) We are slow going, but we are going! We tackled a few mini projects this weekend.

It started with the kitchen area. A few people suggested a command center of sorts. We are still leaning toward a coffee bar, but there is certainly a need for a dumping ground for bags and, soon, coats.

There's a little coat closet under our stairs. Here's the view from the hallway.

Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug

As you can see, we have a lot of doors concentrated in this little area. The door on the far left is our office. The closet is in the middle, and the door on the right goes to the foyer, which is across from the kitchen door. Lots of doors. So we took this one off. (One of the very first things we did when we moved in was take door to the foyer off. Too many doors.)

The closet had a hanging rod (already removed) and a shelf under the stairs. Our hot water heater is also concealed in this closet behind a panel, making it a bit shallow.

Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug

I stuck a bench/hamper inside to see if it fit and did, so I was pretty sure that our coats and bags had a home here. It was a perfect candidate for a makeover!

Step one was to deal with the structure. The wall built to hide the hot water heater was not the prettiest or the most structurally sound.


So Dad helped us reinforce the frame for the panel in front of the hot water heater with right angle brackets. We decided to leave the hanging rod supports in case we change our mind later. And then I scraped and cleaned and caulked all the things!

Then it was on to paint! We picked a lovely dark navy for the closet from our palette (which I will surely blog about eventually).

Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug

Shockingly it only took two coats to fully cover in that dark color. Not-as-shockingly, I am not a fantastic painter. Good thing I started with a closet.

When I was done, Kyle installed double hooks across the back wall with one Hamish-height hook on the side wall. For now, the hamper bench sits inside to catch other things, but we're looking into some shoe storage options (cubbies?) below and some mail slots for the other side wall. We'll also fix the door frame when we do trim painting eventually.

So far we're really liking it! It's great to have a home for all of the things that come in and out with us every day and while we're in "fix-it" mode, it's really nice to have our basket of tools handy but not on the kitchen counter.

Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug

Yay for first paint!