Monday, November 28, 2022

Projected completion

Household projects can be finite and closed-ended, or they can be the exact opposite: Imprecise and never-ending. Most are probably somewhere between those two. Pretty much all of my household projects are actually a bit of both: They’re finite, but they also don’t necessarily “end”, even when they do. Today I completed a project that underscores that reality.

Three weeks ago today, I had the filters for my ventilation system changed. To prepare for that, I had to clear stuff out of the laundry area so that the guy could get into the attic, and that made it as good a time as any to take on my laundry shelving project.

This project had been delayed for ages—so long, in fact, that I can’t even remember when I bought the shelves. They’ve been stored in the garage for ages, and were kind of in the way because I’d kept them out so I could get to them easier—eventually.

Part of the delay was that I knew how much work it would be to clear the laundry area, but I also had a little trouble working out the best way forward. Everything began to come together three weeks ago.

I kept having time conflicts, but the true stalling point came two weeks ago when I finished installing the shelves—and I did’t like the look. It took me a little while to decide how I wanted to proceed, but I bought some storage containers.

Last Wednesday evening, I got the last shelving bits I needed, but I needed to find the time (there was some lawn mowing going on during this time, too). Today was the day to put up the final shelf, and clean things up.

I went out and got some more storage storage containers, and I also repurposed some milk style crates for things I wanted easier access to, I hung the last shelf, took the final photo, and that was it. For now.

The thing I didn’t like was the very reason I came up with this set up: The hanging rod above the laundry tub. I find it jarring. The rod gives me a place to hang shirts to dry, but I later realised I can hang the shirts from the shelves, so maybe I don’t need the rod at all? I decided to leave it as it is for now, and maybe take it away later.

I originally bought three lidded storage bins for the top shelf, with the intention of using them to store things I don’t need frequent access to, like vacuum cleaner bags, extra foil, paper towels, that sort of thing. When I got home, I realised I could fit four bins on that top shelf, and then I realised if I moved the next shelf up a bit, I could also put three more bins on that. That meant I could have two more shelves, instead of just one more.

I moved the third shelf up a little bit, and repurposed three open red crates (Nigel and I bought them for storing records more than twenty years ago. They’re used for things I need easier access to, like my cleaning cloths and also hangers for the shirts I hang to dry.

Right now, I have no idea what I’ll put on the bottom shelf—I’ll live with it for awhile to get a feel for what would be a good use for them. I also may replace the single bottom shelf with two shorter ones (the system is designed so that shelves can be overlapped to creat custom lengths). That way, it’ll match the shelf above it—that bit of overhang really annoys me. Of course.

The small solid shelves next to the sink were actually for the kitchen, but I couldn’t make them work there. In the laundry area, however, they give me a handy place to put my laundry supplies. I’ll probably use the others for cleaning supplies or something.

A few minor points. First, all the bins and both of the laundry baskets were made in New Zealand. That was on purpose, because it matters to me. The dot up near the ceiling in the first two photos was a wall anchor for a shelving system I was going to install (during the first lockdown, I think it was), but it didn’t fit the way I wanted it to—and it was the most expensive shelving system by far. It was in Nigel’s offices in our last two houses, and I now plan on using them in the master wardrobe instead. That wall anchor, however, didn’t grip correctly, and that gave me an excuse to stop the first attempted installation. I removed it after the second photo and patched the hole before installing the new shelves.

So, that’s another project “finished”. I’ve mentioned some minor changes I may make, but I could also make other changes after I live with it—or I may may not change much at all. But I always make changes to “finished” projects—always.

There are still a LOT of household projects for me to finish, but. I know one thing, though: Pretty much all of my household projects are finite, but they also don’t necessarily “end”, even when they do. This one is no different.

The photo montage above shows stages of the project, from top to bottom: "Before", three weeks ago today, "during" in the middle (the assembly instructions are laying their ready for me to use), and "finished" taken today, at the bottom.


Roger Owen Green said...

Just for the record, we have DOZENS of projects, and as soon as one comes off the list, two more are added.

Arthur Schenck said...

Same. Or, sometimes I add a new one because I'm bored with all my other projects. Apparently, it's possible to be fickle about projects, too.