Window Installed [Project 3]

It was quite exciting to have my window installed in the new closet shelving unit.  I really like how the closet looks now — no longer think it needs ‘proper’ doors.

The cupboard door covers the closet rod as intended & connects the turquoise [not quite my blue but didn’t want the ugly green, nor the prissy pink or purple, nor the dull black or brown] fabric cubes [by Martha Stewart Living™ from Home Depot for $6.99@] with the colour scheme.

The sides of the unit are shorter than the door — a little weird I know but it’s whole raison d’être is to prop up the sagging closet rod.  Rather than make a complicated section over the rod, it’s been left open.

My novice ‘carpenter’ had problems cutting the $2+ per foot grooved molding — ah ha, that’s why the pros use a ‘mitre saw’!!  The resulting rectangle was an inch or so too narrow for the intended spot & covered half the glass edging of the window — we did end up with a nice picture frame.

So we retreated to a simpler frame made of 1″x2″s — again, a lack of tools [is Santa thinking router this year?] meant we couldn’t put a proper groove in the lumber.  Because I wanted to see the lead sides [all 3/16″ of them] we installed the glass on the outside.

We tried a clear set of mirror holders but they were too narrow for the thicker glass & lead solder edge.  So we used the heavy-duty holders — not quite the prettiest method!  But I definitely like how the pewter-looking hinges go with the lead & solder.

It was dark outside by the time we had it installed [like 6 p.m.] — I lit a tealight, put it inside, & turned off the lights.  So cool.  This is why I love stained class.  It’s so new & different depending on how the light hits it.  Yet it seems ageless.

My original plan for the closet was a cheap set of open shelves [budget was $20 for plywood] & perhaps a couple of fabric panels [maybe another $20?] to act as drapes.  I was a little surprised at the higher value of this little project but much happier with the results.

First, my friend donated the lumber — two 7′ x 12″ pine pre-finished boards — at about $2.50 per foot totaled $35 + another $4 for taxes.  Wow, $40 sure gets you really nice wood!  So, two 5′ pieces for the sides leaving four 1′ pieces for the shelves — easy cutting with his new circular saw with LED guide-light! [Ooooo, tools, doesn’t everyone love a new tool?]

Adding the stained glass window lent some substance to the unit so when I saw the fabric cubes while at Home Depot, I got one to see how it would work out.  Then, when the measurements were done & the shelves up, I went back to get the other three.  That’s $7 x 4 + tax equals about $31.

Smaller expenses included $4 for the hinges, $3 for the glass holders, & about $3 worth of spruce 1″x2″s [~59¢/ft] for the frame.  Thank goodness there was no painting required — I still have kitchen cupboards to finish!

Of course the leaded window is worth a mini-fortune but because it’s a result of a course it’s almost impossible to calculate the cost.  Yup, the course was $84 [including taxes] but I figure it was worth every penny for what I learned & practiced.  I put this under ‘investment’ expense, along with tools — so I don’t count it in the project cost.

But if I had paid for the supplies: –>the 1½ sq. ft. of glass [had a few pieces that had to be recut, hee hee] would have been around $30; –>the ~6 ft. [probably more] of outside lead came [U-channel] & ~9 ft. [again, probably more due to cutting errors!] of inside lead [H-channel] would have been around $15; and, –>solder, putty, & whiting would be another few dollars, say $5.  About $50 to make the window [gee, Glass-Smith is not getting much profit from the course then!] not including ~8 hrs. labour.

So, including 12% taxes [man, that’s way too high!] but excluding the course fees & circular saw, the closet unit cost about $80 — with window supplies, about $130.  Well worth it to have lots more space for clothes & an organized closet that’s so gorgeous I don’t want to cover it up.

Wow, has this ‘little’ project blossomed, or what?  It’s definitely not ‘professional’ quality but so, so special.  And the best thing is it’s portable so I can take it with me whenever my rental here ends.

Now, my little plastic dressers look tacky & out-of-place.  Hmmm, what if I got a few more of those boxes & made a couple of smaller units to sit on either side of the tall one?  Maybe after Christmas expenses . . .

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