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Perfectly Imperfect

*Editor’s Note: I didn’t plan on featuring this project on RHR, but the more I thought about it, the more I figured you might enjoy it. It’s hardly up to par in terms of my usual aesthetic requirements & the pictures are crummy at best —  but in terms of fun & function, well, it’s one of my favorite projects ever.

We’ve been losing a lot of sleep over the closet in Sonia’s room. Literally.

The sliding doors provided by the landlord were VERY heavy (like solid-oak heavy) and hung from rails under the doorjamb rather than sliding on floor rails. Which made me nervous. Seriously… they’re REALLY heavy! So we chose to remove them — and of course, store them safely in the basement — so Sonia wouldn’t injure herself.

For a while, we just left the closet doorless, but Sonia recently started having nightmares & wanted to avoid her room. It took a while, but eventually she told us that it was because her closet was “too scary.”

Yikes. I guess I can’t blame her. That mess IS scary.

Although, in my defense, I’m only saving all that stuff so I can donate it. Which I’m gonna do. Soon. Jeez… get off my back ;->

Anyway, it was obviously time to come up with a solution for the missing closet doors.

We considered going with curtains, but I worried that they’d blow in the breeze from the fan & spook her even more than the doorless-ness. Then we thought about hanging lighter wooden closet doors (like the ones we used for our bathroom closet)

but it would have cost way too much because the closet in Sonia’s room is so long.

What were we to do? We needed a cheap, simple, temporary way to close off a long area… Then it came to me… Church!! The church basement! Those accordion-like, vinyl room divider thingies!

They’re light enough that we won’t have to worry about them falling; solid enough to keep ghosts & scary monsters away; cheap and easy to install. Win-win-win!

Of course, they are kind of ugly. And we could only find them in faux-wood-grain, which didn’t help. But frankly, after all those long nights, we were willing to compromise on aesthetics in exchange for a solid 8 hours of sleep. So we grabbed them & decided to figure out how to make them “work” later.

The installation was a breeze — it only took about 30 minutes & we were hardly rushing.

Once they were in place, we figured it might help Sonia to “trust” the new doors if she got to decorate them herself. So I picked up some tempera paint & glitter paints … and we let her go wild!!

She just can’t believe it’s true!

I joined in on the fun by using some very simple stencils to paint animal shapes on the top half of the doors.

Unfortunately, I’d forgotten to buy stencil adhesive, so I just taped them up & did the best I could. The results are a little crude, but they do the trick.

We also plastered the doors with colorful, sparkly stickers:)

Of course, letting a 4-year-0ld loose with paint has its consequences…

… but that’s the great thing about tempera paint — it washes right off with soap & water! So both child & closet can be restored to their original paintless glory when the time arrives.

So, did it work, you ask?

Like a charm! Sonia is no longer afraid of her room. And there have been way fewer nightmares.

So, despite the mess, we’re thrilled.

And when I asked her what she thought of her new closet doors, Sonia said, “They’re perfect.”

You are, kiddo. You are.

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2 thoughts on “Perfectly Imperfect

  1. anthony on said:

    One of my favorite posts yet, and YES old friend, I read them all.


    • Thanks, Anthony! Sonia loves her new doors so much, I just had to share! Thanks so much for reading, too — when I get rich & famous I’ll have to give you a little “knew me when” kickback ;->

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