If you build a closet yourself you may find it is a great way to not only save money but also create the exact type and amount of storage that you need. A few years back a good friend decided to build a log cabin on a lake in the North. He did a great job in designing and building it. It was a beautiful structure with a fireplace and large windows overlooking the lake. When the day came to move into the cabin for the summer his wife asked where the closets were. Yes that's right he left them out of the design.
My friend called me and in the background I could plainly hear his better half extolling his building abilities. With our assistance he quickly found that you can build a closet yourself. Since this was a log cabin he decided that constructing several walk in closets was impractical. However since the cabin was going to be used in both the summer months and for snowmobiling in the winter there was a need to store both summer and winter apparel the use of free standing and wardrobe closet furniture alone would not provide all the needed closet space.
One of the best places to find closet ideas and designs is on the Internet. Many closet manufactures and installers have great closet layouts design software on their websites. Many of these software packages are specifically design to help you select the company's products but they frequently can be used to build a closet yourself. Basically there are only three closet options available and they include the walk-in, reach in and free standing or wardrobe closet furniture. Since space was limited we decided on using 36 inch deep reach in and free standing designs.
Once you have your closet idea and design you can start looking for building materials. In the case of my friend whose log cabin had no closet space we select half log siding that was very similar to the existing log structure. We roughed in the closets against the interior stud walls of each bedroom and then lined each with white cedar. This cedar closet lining basically works the same as a cedar chest. The interior shelves were also constructed of cedar. One half of the closets were dedicated to standard half and full length clothes hanging and the rest to open shelves. Open selves allow one to quickly find everything stored within the closet.
We used the same sealer used on the cabins interior log surfaces to finish the exterior of our new reach in closets. My friend's wife did her part as well by finding wardrobe closet furniture that would accent the natural look of the log cabin. We visited the furniture store and made several measurements and noted the type of construction and material. It was not long before we were back in our shop designing and building two copies.
You can build a closet yourself that will function as well as any product found on the market today. In addition the total cost of designing and building 3 standard and two free standing closets was less than $1000. If you were to purchase the two wardrobe furniture pieces it would have cost more than twice as much alone. Our total project time was about 3 weeks which was reasonable considering we all had regular jobs to work as well. As you can see you really can build a closet yourself.