No Space For A Craft Room? Create A Project Closet!

This project is one that I have been meaning to do for a LONNNNNNNG time…but have managed to keep putting it off. But today, the continued acquisition of materials for the blog finally forced me to get my butt in gear and DO IT.

I was beginning to go bonkers over all the “stuff” piling up on the counters, the table, the phone desk, the computer desk, the floor, the clothes dryer, etc.

Since I don’t have an actual ROOM to devote to crafting, sewing, blogging, etc….YET….I had to make due with the closet in our laundry/mudroom.

There are a few inherent problems associated with this space that have contributed to the pretty bad shape it was in.

First of all, it’s tucked into a corner of a very small laundry/mudroom. It was hard to even get pictures of it because I could only back up a few feet.

It’s also very DARK! There is no lighting in the closet and it gets little to no natural lighting in that corner (that’s why the pictures are so grainy!) which makes it a less than desirable place to spend much time working on.

So that is what I had facing me today…but luckily with the help of a few Thrift Store finds, I was ready to go!

In my Simple Pantry Makeover post a few weeks ago…I mentioned that I had picked up several of the baskets I was using at our local Thrift Store. Baskets are a “dime a dozen” at thrift stores. The problem is, most of them have big, awkward handles that render them practically useless.
Well, here’s my answer to that….a sturdy pair of wire cutters.  I just snip those babies off and NOW I have something I can actually work with! I also look for square and rectangular baskets….since round ones tend to leave you with a lot of wasted space.

This one was $1.00 and will work perfectly in my “new” Project Closet.

Here are the AFTER” pictures, for what they are worth. My AMATEUR photographer status really shows in these pictures taken in a cramped, dark space. But you’ll get the general idea.

This was as WIDE a shot as I could get. Unfortunately, my Project Closet

still has to share the space with our vacuum cleaner. 

Man! Someone likes their soaps in this house! ;-)

More soap???

The hubster hung one of those cordless lights up high on one wall which helped dispel the darkness immensely! I think I’ll get another one for the other side too. I use twine and scissors a LOT, so I wanted them handy!

I tried to make use of the side walls as much as possible. Here I have hung stacks of scrapbook paper on simple nails! It’s so nice of the paper people to put a hole in the top of those things. :-)

I am still looking for a better solution than this for wrapping paper, but haven’t quite figured it out yet.  This works for now. (And for those of you seeing the paper towels and thinking I’ve given up on going paperless…that is my stockpile from BEFORE I “threw in the paper towels”, and it’s there for emergencies only.) 

And lastly…my handy dandy clipboard I also picked up at the thrift store that I covered with some scrapbook paper. I am notorious for throwing away receipts I need to keep, so I’m hoping this will help. The thing underneath it, that looks like a briefcase, is actually my paper cutter. That thing is such an awkward size and shape to put ANYWHERE…so I decided hanging it up was the only option. I actually like it. :-)

It’s still a “work in progress”….but the work I HAVE put into it has really paid off. I actually get excited to go put something in or take something out of the Project Closet…just so I can admire my work. ;-)

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  1. Janette says

    I used the closet under my stairs for my craft closet…it’s tiny! I hung a shoe organizer on the back of the door and that gave me about 24 extra spaces to store things. It works really well…you’d have to move your paper cutter, but you could hang the organizer on the wall or something. You could even put all your receipts in one pocket. Nice blog. I enjoyed it!

  2. tenny says

    on your crafting closet page on one of your after photos you have masin jars on the soap shelf could you tell me whats in them i’m just curious i’m going to do this to my closet and was wondering, thanks tenny

  3. angela morgan says

    I absolutely love your website. I found it after searching the web for ways to save money on things like making your own household products. I have spent hours just looking at your diy projects and love that a lot of it is so practical and common since ideas. Keep up the good work.

  4. Kay Hilderbrand says

    Use small I hooks on each side of ceiling and stretch “your string” acrooss at 3 or 4 itervals and slide paper in. Saw this on another site. Rule of organizing use all available space with taste. Great site…Thanks, Kay

  5. Anonymous says

    I too have to save lots of receipts because I do day care. Save them all. If the clip board doesn't work for you I use a big manilla envelope and it's in my craft closet and I make myself go there imediately with receipts. I think they are 6 for a dollar at the dollar store. I keep the top open so I hust poke them in the envelope. Works great for me. I also love the idea of covering the clipboard with scrapbook paper. The clip board can be used for lots of different things and different themes. I'm going to make me one to be able to write things that I need. EX: Glue,paint,cotton balls etc. Another one for notes to go home to parents. Thanks for the ideas….Cathi

  6. Catherine's not naturally crafty says

    For the wrapping paper holders you can get cheap curtain rods and hangers at Wally World, Home improvement store etc and hang them on one of those side walls one right under the other. Kinda like the decorating fabric at the fabric store.With your scissors in hand, you pull off as much as you need and cut. Just be sure the rods have enough clearance for the diameter of the roll you want to hang. But you could even get a big roll of kraft or butcher paper hung this way.

    For the cans, this is why God invented contact paper. Just cover, and then use the labels on your printer to make 'em pretty. You might even see if the cans are magnetic and then print up the magnet labels from the home office store. Alternately, you could use the self adhesive labels and paint them with chalkboard paint, OR there is chalkboard contact paper ( I know- who knew?) and you could cut out labels from that, if you are crafty or you have one of those nifty criket type cutters. I don't I just find a shape online and trace.

    Or just paint the whole can with chalkboard paint. Or paint the whole can with coordinating paint and finish with polyurethane. The options are literally endless. And Mod Podge is your bestie too. Not sure how it would hold up on plastic. I'm going to find out as i just found that the new French Fried Onion rings can is plastic and PERFECT for storing odd size things. Plus the plastic shrink label comes of nicely so it is a white plastic rectangular blank slate. Currently housing those water enhanceing packets.

    • shalom says

      The comment about the curtain rod gave me an idea. If the closet is wide enough, attach a curtain rod to the front edge of each shelf to put your favorite rolls of paper on or maybe basic ones like butcher paper, brown paper, white wrapping paper, etc. At Christmas time they sell tall plastic bins designed for wrapping paper storage. It would keep the paper corralled and dirt free. Or even get a basket wide enough to lay wrapping paper in and rig up a pulley system to raise it up out of the way and lower it for access.

  7. Leslie says

    I'm enjoying your blog so much-thank you Pinterest! A thought about your wrapping paper…use a short bit of your twine and an eye hook (or tack) to corral the tops of the tubes you have standing in that container. Make the perimeter the same as the container, then you'll always have just enough room for that many tubes. Use ribbon and make it look even nicer. I like the anomymous post above with the Ikea bag holders, but this is free!

  8. Jill Nystul says

    nelson….ran across this tonight and thought of your "challenge". ;-)
    Let me know what you think!

    Great ideas for the wrapping paper! Thanks everyone. Now I can't decide! lol. Denise…CLEVER as always! What a great idea. I do the tape thing and you're right…messes up a good part of the paper! ugh.

    Rachel…when I was re-doing the closet I think I ended up with about 6 pair of scissors in there. lol. Love a good pair of scissors!

  9. Denise from Ark says

    Wish I had an organization suggestion for you, I did notice that you might benefit from something that ran across the other day that was a big bad DUH…I've always used scotch tape or rubber bands to hold the end of the roll in place after it was opened. The idea I saw slit a tp tube lengthwise and clipped it over the tube. Both the rubber band and the tape obviously caused some damage to the paper. Then when I went to actually do that, it occurred to me that using an empty gift wrap roll instead of the TP roll would cover more of the paper and protect it a little from dust and inadvertent gouging. Just make sure that enough of your giftwrap shows to keep it easily identifiable.

  10. Rachel JL says

    I love my scissors, too. In fact, I love them so much that a long time ago, I bought a whole bunch, because I hate it when they get lost. When I had a car, my kids knew there was always a pair in the glove compartment. These days, they still ask if I have a pair in my purse, lol. My niece "accused" me of having the kitchen scissor in my room (I do lose things a lot) and I could confidently reply, "why would I do that when I have four or five pairs in my room already?" lol. (It turned out the kitchen scissors were in her room.) ;)