Published on May 21st, 2012 | by Jules Yap


Retrofitting a PAX into a closet

Materials: PAX wardrobe , LYNGDAL doors, wood trim, mitre saw, table saw, chop saw, nails, screws

Description: After looking at PAX wardrobes and also at several nice hacks here, we decided to remove our 1950s built in closet and replace it with a set of PAX wardrobes.

Our closet measured 58″ across, so two 29 1/2″ wardrobe pieces would be close. We decided to maximize the closet so we chose the taller wardrobes. To make these fit, we had to enlarge the opening of the original closet by cutting up several inches, and also taking the plaster off the left side of the closet. We reframed the top of the space to fit the wardrobes.

We also wanted to maximize the space by setting our PAX pieces all the way in this deep space, which was 8″ deeper than the wardrobes, so we needed to trim out the space and give a finished look. We decided to use sliding doors to save space, and we liked the look of the LYNGDAL doors. Because the doors are meant to install directly on the wardrobe, we had to hack a new installation process.

We built a new top header and attached the rail across the front. Because our opening was 1/2″ smaller than the rail, we had to cut the rail to fit with a hacksaw. We discarded the side pieces that come with the doors, and measured down to built a rail across the base. We also built a small deck to match up to the base of the cabinets, as they are slightly elevated from the ground level. This took a lot of calculations, and after installing the doors, we discovered we were 1/2″ too high and 1″ too forward, so we had to take down the doors and redo the trim.

We decided to add interior chests on both sides – this will be our guest room and we’d like our guests to have plenty of place to put their things!

See more of the retrofitted Pax wardrobe.

~ Laurie, Long Beach, CA

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The Author

Jules Yap

"I am Jules, the engine behind IKEAHackers and the one who keeps this site up and running. My mission is to capture all the wonderful, inspiring, clever hacks and ideas for our much loved IKEA items".

4 Responses to Retrofitting a PAX into a closet

  1. Anonymous says:

    My 48 inch closet is too narrow for 29 5/8 plus 19 5/8 units by about 1 1/2 inch. One 39 5/8 unit leaves about a 8 1/4 gap on one side. Any ideas?

  2. Mel says:

    Love this idea! We’ve been searching for a way to re-do our build in wardrobes (70s era saggy chipboard and no drawers) without spending a fortune (and we’re not scared of renos – done heaps in the past including knocking down & rebuilding walls) and this sounds like a great solution for us. Thanks for sharing. :)

  3. Anonymous says:

    Looks great!

  4. Oliver says:

    That is awesome. Looks so clean.

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