It’s been said many times, but the best part of living in an old home is its character. Sometimes (or a lot of times) that character can be a little quirky, though. That was the case with our sunroom entry way. It was obvious that the sunroom at the front of our house was added on or closed in later than when it was originally built for a couple of reasons, but most obviously because of the window that existed between the front bedroom and the sunroom.
Originally we thought removing the window was a “someday” project that wasn’t a priority, but when we decided to move the bathroom into the space where the front bedroom was we had to remove the window. On the bathroom side, the area where the window was would become just a normal wall, but on the sunroom side, it was more difficult to patch the hole in because of the plaster walls in there. We decided instead to create a small built-in space to hang coats and hold things like gloves and hats since we don’t have a coat closet.
Here is a quick tutorial on how we did the project.
Step 1: Decide dimensions
This is a custom piece, so we created it specifically for our area. Draw out what you want your space to look like and decide measurements for how large you want your piece to be.
Step 2: Prep the Area Behind the Built-in
For us this meant removing the window itself, then adding 2×4’s to make the wall flush with opening and to give us something to screw into.
Make sure you know where your studs are to screw into before you get started. We actually had to add quite a few 2×4’s since this space was an empty hole before this.
This is sort of step 2.5, but we then added a piece of plywood that became the backing of our built in. You don’t need to do this unless you are covering a hole like we were. You’re backing will simply be your drywall, plaster, or whatever wall covering already exists.
Step 3: Add trim pieces
First, frame the outside area with 1×4’s (or size of choice). We attached all trim pieces with a nail gun. Then, horizontally in the area where the hooks and shelf will go, place a wider piece that will give space to place the hooks. We chose a 1×8.
To create a board and batten look on the bottom half below where the shelf goes, use another 1×4 vertically half way between the two trim pieces. You could also do two or three of these board and batten pieces if you have a larger area.
Of course, always check for level and plum throughout the process.
Finally, we added outside corner trim around the edges of the outside trim pieces. This is optional, but we did it because it matched the rest of the trim in our sunroom.
Step 4: Paint
I recommend painting everything before adding the shelf piece or hooks.
Step 5: Add finishing pieces!
Finally, attach the shelf piece. We did that with a kreg jig joint on the top part of the shelf and filled in the holes. We also added some brackets from Lowe’s to support the shelf in three places.
Then attach the hooks on the horizontal trim piece.
It was really quite a simple project, and it adds a cute custom piece to our entryway. The best part of a project like this is is that even if you have a house without much built in character, you can add some with a project like this.
Now I’m on the hunt for a little bench to put under here! Any recommendations?