As many of you are aware, we bought our first ‘OUR’ home in August. Even as it was being built, my head was going crazy with a million ideas of what I would add, how I would make it unique and our own, things to make it work best for our family. My First New Home Remodel Project: DIY Backpack Center.
The reason I picked this as my first project was 1. The designated spot for backpacks until this was my bedroom…..no thanks! And 2……This Big. Huge. Empty Wall
Ya, not exactly the prettiest spot – but oh the potential!!! So the brainstorming, measuring, Pinterest-surfin’, measuring and sketching drafts (plus more measuring) began. And continued….seriously, like a little notebook later and I finally had the plans/measurements I wanted. Then it was off to Home Depot!
- Sides, Bottom, Middle, and under Shelf: 5 thick pieces of molding
- Shelf: a REALLY long board, plus two support ends.
- Decoration/kid separators: Three 1″ thick plain boards
- 4 double clothing hooks
- 4 frames
- White paint/primer
- Black paint
- LOTS of nails – make sure they’re the right kind! (not too long/wide). I used ones that were specifically for Molding pieces
Biggest piece of advice = Measure, measure measure!!! Every little thing, measure it!
Step 1: Paint the frames, if necessary. If you’d like, paint your boards now, too.
I was set on having black frames, but fell in love with the design of these light blue ones, so I painted them black myself.
Step 2: Cut your boards.
See ‘Notes 3’ below. I don’t have a nice wood saw, but I bought this little saw/guide pack for less than $15 and it did a wonderful job!
Steps 3 – 5: Put on the bottom board. Then the two side boards. Then the top board. YES – in that order!
Again, MEASURE so you know this spot is really where you want it!
Yes, that’s my hubby being AMAZINGLY helpful – thanks hun!
Steps 6 & 7: Add the three divider/separator pieces. Then the middle board.
The middle board is where you’ll put the hangers, so try to put a nail through at least a few studs with this board. Also – see how the outlet is really close to one of the pieces – this is one reason measuring is so important! If I hadn’t double checked, we could have really been screwed with that outlet!
Step 8: Add the shelf and supporting pieces.
We made sure the supporting pieces were in studs, then also nailed from the top of the shelf down into the board below it to help it be more secure. We still can’t put much weight on the shelf, to be safe, but it’s at least secure enough for light stuff or just for show.
Make sure you used enough nails.
I used white paint for my boards/center, and did them all at the same time after it was built.
Add the hooks, again MEASURING 😀
And you’re done!!!
One of the reasons ours took us so long was that I didn’t plan properly from the beginning, so we ended up making about 5 different trips to Home Depot for supplies – they were so patient with us! Other than that, though, it was actually amazingly fast!
I really am glad we used the frames so each kid would have a dry erase board – we can write notes, important reminders for school, or whatever. So excited!
What do you guys think of my first big project? I absolutely LOVE my backpack center, and realized that I really enjoy home remodeling projects, too! So stay tuned….many more fun remodel projects to come!!!
Notes: Yes, I’m sure you can paint the frames last, or in the middle. I just chose to do them first.
Notes 2: Going back, I would have gotten 4 cute-designed corner pieces for my corners instead of just having the boards meet.
Notes 3: You know how they say measure twice, cut once? Measure LOTS and you still may have to cut multiple times….so be careful and pay extra close attention.
Notes 4: USE A LEVELOR to check that everything is straight/level.
Notes 5: Use a stud-finder so you can make sure at least some of your boards go into a stud, helping secure your center better.