Monday, June 04, 2012

A Thing of Beauty

This past weekend, I organized my shoes.

Wait, wait! Don't close the browser window! This story has a good ending.
Bear with me. 

I realize devoting a full day to shoe organization is like one step above (below?) storing them in the oven, Sex-and-the-City-style.

But it was necessary.
My shoes had started to multiply like Gremlins in a kiddie pool.

There were shoes behind the closet door.

And behind the bedroom door.

And in an old, broken bookshelf.

And on another old, broken shelf. 
(Thanks again, movers, for breaking all my stuff!)

And in a basket.

Er...two baskets. 

And in the closet.

And the other closet. 

Some might say I have too many pairs of shoes.
This sentence does not compute.

I clearly just needed some better shoe storage.

Here's what I did:

1. Assembled the large, deep Ikea Billy bookcase. (This one.) Despite my non-love of white laminate, I determined that the white shelves and background would provide the best, most neutral canvas for shoe display.

2. Drilled three extra sets of shelf holes at the top, bottom, and right below the middle door hinges. This was a huge pain in the ass and I wish I'd done it before I assembled the cabinet but I didn't realize that it was necessary until after the shelf frame was together.

3. Added the Billy Olsbo glass doors. Drilled holes and added cabinet knobs.

4. Alternated Billy glass and wood shelves in the cabinet to keep the look light & airy.

It only took about 4 hours.

Ikea seems to have gotten smarter about their instructions. They now feature this drawing to start that bible of exasperation, the Ikea instruction booklet:

Do you see that?

Sad guy with pile of parts = alone
Happy guy with pile of parts = with another person

That's right. Ikea is trying to tell you that you should not assemble their products without a second person around.

Screw you, Ikea. I don't have another person.

Despite their singleton discrimination, I have to admit, they've got a point. If you have ever assembled anything from Ikea that involves door or drawer parts, you know why this drawing is here; namely, for moral support and suicide prevention when you realize you're missing a part. I bet their risk management people made them add this to the instructions to avoid lawsuits.

Approximately 60% of the way through the building process, there is inevitably a moment of utter exhaustion as you look around, surrounded by torn boxes, papers, little metal parts, and rebus instructions. And a half-assembled piece of plywood laminate furniture that you have carefully made sure is NOT TOUCHING THE BARE WOOD FLOOR.


That said, I persevered despite a minor breakdown (proudly, there were no tears) that accompanied attaching the doors. In the end, it was worth it. 

I can now see all my flats, sandals, and heels at once. The only thing that would possibly make this better is a wider shelf (and more wall space) so that my boots could be in there as well. But there's no room for boots. It's ok. I'm still pleased with this solution. It feels like I'm shopping every time I get dressed.

It's a little bit awesome.

Joy. I feel joy every time I look at this thing. It's like Christmas morning EVERY morning.

As Mom said: "Nice! You have room for one more pair!"
Yes. And I'm enacting a strict one-in-one-out policy from here forward. Gremlins begone!


courtney said...

so jealous! it looks fabulous!!

Alessandra said...

Oh, the yin and yang of our family...
YOU create a beautiful shoe closet for yourself.
DAD SAWS the California Closet that was in our old bedroom.

naca A said...

Great job, but that's not all your shoes, according to the before photos. Did you purge some while you were at it? I do love the cabinet though, and am totally impressed you did it alone.

Kate said...

Thanks! I did get rid of a bunch, and also decided to put all flipflops in a basket in my closet & to store boots separately on a closet shelf. Still, the system has been in place for a few years and has worked pretty well!