#52PROJECTS: Project #5

Evolution Started in Year: 2014
Repurposed in Year: 2019
Completion Year: 2024

We have a cloak/coat closet!

If I ask if you have a “Fred Flintstone closet” in your house, do you know what I mean? For those of us who grew up watching The Flintstones cartoons, we likely remember Fred going into a closet and his bowling ball falling from an upper shelf onto his head. This closest was not that bad. Bowling balls and other heavy objects belong on the floor. I know that. You know that. Nevertheless, we have similar catch-all closet under the stairs. It has its challenges in that is it not climate controlled, so repurposing it has been an evolutionary process. Phase 1 is done. No paint. It will get a cedar lining instead.

Project Background

When we first moved into the Manor, we toyed with the idea of putting a WC (water closet/bathroom) beneath the stairs. It became affectionately called the Potter Room (multiple nuances intended– potty room and Harry Potter’s room). We had done the same thing in a previous home; however, the more we puzzled through the expense and building codes with brick walls and slab flooring, the more we realized we would have to have someone jackhammer the concrete to create the new facility. In my opinion, jackhammering beneath/within an old home is right out! The whole WC idea was nixed, and the closet became a working and storage space– paint cans, gardening implements . . ., then, Christmas ideas came to light.

Up until Christmas season 2019, we had been storing the Christmas tree and all the other decorations upstairs. This meant trekking up and down the stairs twice a season with multiple big and bulky holiday items. Repurposing the ‘Potter Room’ meant storage for the downstairs trees and ornaments. The paints and gardening things remained, but these items ebbed and flowed with seasonal projects.

It was about this time that we really recognized the need for a cloak/coat closet, too. It could happen with a bit of rearranging, and this became the long-term plan. Project #5 included emptying the closet, cutting back the shelves on the wall, installing a closet dowel, repacking the Christmas items, scaling down the paint cans, and hanging the coats! TAH DAH!

While the long-term is still yet to be completed, I am thrilled with Phase 1 to be Project #5 and marked ‘done’. Phase 2 will include removing the walls and insulating under the stairs. Phase 3 will be lining the walls with cedar boards. Again, not a current need, but definitely in the plans.

Wonderfully yours,