For many, having a walk-in wardrobe is a dream.
Just imagine all that space for your most beloved clothing, shoes and accessories.
However, walk-in wardrobes can be pricey and not everyone can afford to install one in their homes.
But where there’s a will, there’s a way – and one father of two has fitted one himself for just £120.
Utilising an unused space between two bedrooms, teaching assistant and YouTuber Kenroy Malcolm took it upon himself to remodel it without the hefty price.
The father of two girls, aged six and one, says: ‘We have a small area in between two bedrooms that we wanted to use for storage but we were unsure how to make the best use of the area.
‘The original idea was to knock one of the walls down but I’m not looking to do that right now so I was looking for a plan B.
‘Then I stumbled upon a sliding door on Argos which would save us space compared with a traditional door. I knew this was the best option as we could avoid swinging a door open and closed, instead just sliding one over to access the space.
‘I wanted to do this myself rather than pay someone to come in and do it for me.’
To complete the work, Kenroy estimated a joiner would charge approximately £170 per day for the labour. Materials would cost around £300 meaning Kevin would pay roughly £470 in total.
‘I knew then I could make this space a walk-in wardrobe with a difference without paying for a professional job,’ he explains.
‘Saving money to provide a better life for my family was the main inspiration for me doing this project. Installing a sliding door is normally an expensive task and I was determined to show others that there is an alternative to this costly route.
‘I found one of those naked wardrobes where you can see what you’ve got before you’ve even opened the doors, because there are no doors. I also wanted to use some scaffolding boards I got for a previous project, which had some left over, to make some shelves above the wardrobe and stack things on.
‘In terms of supplies, I bought a folding door from Argos for £32. There is also a cheaper version for £22 for those on a tighter budget but I decided to splash out on this one! I got some shelf brackets from eBay and they were £22 for 4, then I picked up the naked wardrobe – technically called a metal frame clothes hanger – from Wayfair for £55. The price seems to have gone up since then so I got lucky.’
To make the door frame, Kenroy salvaged recycled wood to make the door frame along with pieces of timber.
‘My neighbour was doing some renovation on his loft and he was throwing these pieces of old timber away which I think were a part of his rafters in his attic,’ he says. ‘Rather than chucking it away, I wanted to make use of this solid piece of wood in my project. I also picked up some timber from my local hardware store for no more than £10.’
‘I also made some savings on my purchases by using a site called Top Cashback. I am always aiming to save money where possible because my goal is to save enough to buy my first investment property. The site is great for saving money in cashback as between February and May alone this year I have generated over £100 in cashback.
‘The first thing I did was clear the space. A lot of stuff was in there that just needed to go. I originally bought the bookshelf which was in there second hand for £15. I then actually sold it to someone for the exact same price so that was the final step towards having an empty space to work on.’
Next Kenroy took some measurements and sanded the wood for a more polished finish.
‘I measured up the door and then the timber which would cover the gap between the door and the wall, before trimming it to size,’ he recalls.
‘Next, I removed the staples from the salvaged wood I had picked up from my neighbour and cut it to the size I was looking for. The wood was in pretty rough condition, but I sanded it down and once that was done it meant I wouldn’t need to varnish or paint it. What’s more, the rustic look of the wood is in line with the style we have throughout the rest of the property, so it was a perfect match.
‘Once I had set up the support above the door, I picked up the actual sliding door. Thankfully it was pretty straightforward to set up. One of the downsides of these sliding doors is that they come in a specific size and there isn’t much you can do to alter them, but this one came in the exact size I was looking for in order to close the gap.
‘It was a few centimetres short, which is why I used the timber to cover what would have been left behind.’
‘Next, I set up the naked wardrobe. The overall quality was good for the price, and the assembly was very straightforward. The final step was to attach the shelves, which I had made earlier in the year out of scaffolding boards. I drilled in the brackets and then attached the shelves with the help of my brother.’
All in all, the project took a few days to complete.
‘Overall I’m super happy with this project,’ Kenroy says. ‘I reckon if I’d set aside one full day I could have had it all done and dusted in that timeframe but I’m glad I was able to come up with a cost-effective solution to make the best use of this small space in the house.’
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