How to Build a Closet Organizer

Assembling the shoe rack and accessory shelf Step 1

As you did for the sweater divider, lay the shoe rack top and bottom (D) and horizontal shelf (G) side by side to lay out the positions of the vertical dividers (E). Center the horizontal shelf so its ends are 3/4 inch from the ends of the top and bottom.

Step 2

Glue and clamp a vertical divider to the bottom. Make sure the divider is aligned to the layout, then secure with 4d finishing nails. Repeat for the other dividers. Attach the sides (F) the same way, making sure the ends of the bottom are flush with the sides.

Step 3

Apply glue on the ends of the shoe rack horizontal shelf (G), then glue and clamp the shelf to the three vertical dividers (E). Check for square and nail in place. Nail the sides into the ends of the vertical shelf.

Step 4

Glue and clamp one of the three remaining vertical dividers (E) to the top. Align it, then secure it with 4d finishing nails. Repeat for the remaining dividers.

Step 5

Apply glue to the top edges of the sides and the bottoms of the dividers you attached to the top. Nail the top to the sides. Make sure the assembly is square, then secure each top divider into the horizontal shelf by toe-nailing at front and back.

Step 6

Lay the top and bottom (D) of the accessory shelf side by side to mark the positions of the two vertical dividers (H). Glue and clamp the dividers in place and secure with 4d finishing nails. Cover all the front edges with edge banding.

What If... Your closet is a different size?

The wall organizer shown here is designed to fit in a closet with a back wall 7 feet wide and 8 feet tall. But your closet dimensions may be different.

If the height is different, all you need to do is adjust the height of the center sweater divider. If the closet is narrower, you just need to shorten the right shelf or the accessory shelf or both.

Although bookshelves made of 3/4-inch plywood shouldn't span more than 36 inches, you probably won't store anything as heavy as books in the closet, so you can safely expand the right shelf to about 42 inches. The left accessory shelf can be as long as 48 inches if you add another vertical divider.

Another option for wide closets is to make the sweater divider wider or even make two or three side-by-side sweater dividers. Of course, the shoe rack can be widened or narrowed to any width you want.

Options to Consider: Screen molding edge

Screen molding covers seams where screening is attached to a frame, but it's also ideal for covering exposed plywood edges. The molding is 3/4 inches wide to match the plywood, and you can choose from several profiles, including flat molding with rounded edges or beaded.

Attach the molding with glue and 4d finishing nails. You can paint or apply a clear finish to match the project. Or, make a decorative contrast by prepainting the molding to apply to plywood with a clear finish, or prefinishing to apply to painted plywood.

Continued on page 5:  Finishing and installing the organizer


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