Expedit Custom Closet

Materials: 7 1×5 Expedit Shelving Units

Description: After enduring more than 7 years of plain wire shelving in our home, I wanted to give us a cleaner, more organized Master Closet, and get the shoes off the floor. I recently finished the hardwood flooring, so this seemed as good a time as any.

I started with a cleat attached to the studs with lag bolts about 12″ off the floor. This allowed me to level the Expedits and carry the weight of the clothing without ripping out the drywall. (A painful lesson learned from a previous home…)

I sat each Expedit on the cleat, used the included hardware to attach them to the drywall on top and bottom so that they wouldn’t tip forward or slide off the cleat at the bottom. Since the rod for the clothing would be connected toward the front of the unit, I added a second cleat inside the Expedit at the top, attaching it to the stud, then added a couple of long screws through the top of the Expedit into the cleat, making sure to pass through the framing wood inside the Expedit. This meant I needed to move the hardware on top down to make room for the cleat, so I drilled a new hole to shift it.

Hanging the rods had two major challenges: The hollow structure of the Expedit could easily rip under the weight of the clothing and the surface chips pretty easily when you drill/cut it. I created a jig to make hole placement/leveling/wall distance consistent. I bought a new, longer bit to drill through the Expedit, hoping the sharper blade would leave less damage. I would get the bit up to full speed before pushing through and managed to keep the damage to a minimum.

In order to distribute the weight better, I used large bumper washers for mounting, spreading the force across the face of the Expedit instead of the bolt pulling down through the thin walls. I cut closet rods to length and mounted them with store bought brackets.

I wish Ikea still had the Expedit accessory that broke one cubby into four slots for shoes. My next project is to create my own…

~ Mark Mobley, Georgia, USA

Jules Yap