How Much Did the Closet Cost? A budget breakdown + Look For Less!

July 21, 2020

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Occasionally, after finishing a big project like the Fullmer Kitchen or our bathroom renovation or the backyard–we share a budget breakdown. We get asked for them often and we get it, you’re curious what it costs to do projects like these! For some projects, it wouldn’t make sense because labor varies so much from area to area, but when we’re DIYing the whole thing–and taking you along for the ride, hopefully empowering you to be able to achieve or try something similar–labor costs aren’t included and it’s a lot easier to give you a ballpark.

You can see all the before and afters of our closet here (and all the sources!!)

Here’s how the closet budget breaks down!

$239 – Ceiling Paneling (See the full how-to here!)
$699 – Chandelier
$37 – Curtain Rod
$448 – Curtains: Custom from Martha & Ash, Fabric
$220 – Paint: Lamp Room Gray by Farrow & Ball (You can see more on painting the closet here!)
$8 x 41 = $328 – Cabinet Knobs
$3,439 – Mirror: Custom from Handmade Industries
$2,150 – IKEA PAX: (See more on building the wardrobes here! You can also see how to use the IKEA PAX wardrobe planner here!)
$1,199 – Ottoman
$781 – LED undercabinet lighting
$2,750 – Rug: The Vintage Rug Shop
$229 – Chair
$11 x 5 = $55 – Marble Knobs
$559 – Vanity


We also love to pair these kinds of posts with some budget friendly alternatives. Some people LOVE this, some people HATE this. And I think the people that don’t like it, it’s because, well why didn’t you just use the budget friendly alternative in the first place?! 

Valid question! Sometimes, when it comes to things like the light fixture or desk–the size was a determining factor. And for other things like the rug (one of a kind vintage) and mirror (custom made) –we purchased at full price from small shops that we have followed on Instagram forever and were honored to support. We have always loved mixing high and low and because we went low on the cabinetry (Ikea Pax, for the win!), we felt good about including some splurge pieces, too!

But that doesn’t mean you have to! I always recommend splurging on something. (Remember: “Splurge” is obviously going to mean something different to everybody!) Maybe it’s a piece of art or curtains or hardware. It will automatically make you feel more invested in the space. And then save where you can! Hopefully the Look For Less ideas below will help open up your mind even more to making your own dream closet.


Crystal Chandelier: $147
Swivel Mirror: $229
Plaid Curtains: $34
Rug: $264
Gold Knobs (pack of 5): $21
Leather Ottoman: $339 (another good one!)
Desk: $474 (this is another great one that is currently sold out)
LED undercabinet lighting: $15

Although we used the real Farrow & Ball paint in our closet,  we’ve also had pretty good luck color-matching Farrow & Ball paint at Sherwin Williams. The depth is NOT the same to F&B’s formula (it’s magic, I swear) but the color is there if you want to go that route!

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What do you think?

  1. Sue says:

    What about the pocket doors? Do you have a source for them? :)

  2. Danielle Sopko says:

    Where are your closet rods from? I’m obsessed with this!!

  3. Carrie says:

    Looks fabulous!

    Can you tell me what paneling you used on the backs of the Pax units? It doesn’t seem to be the stuff that came with the units. Thanks!

  4. Ashley says:

    This closet is gorgeous! Not sure I’d be brave enough to share with my husband! Just curious… what is the size of this space?! It looks so roomy!

  5. CKeller says:

    The link for the fabric used on the curtains isn’t working. Can you check it? It takes me to Etsy and says “Uh-oh”.

  6. Shannon Egle says:

    Also … where did you source your hangers? I saw the box in the video reveal, but could not tell. Thank you!

  7. Shannon Egle says:

    Are your cabinet knobs aged brass or unlacquered brass?

  8. Ash says:

    I love these posts! Your splurges are all gorgeous (and sadly not available in australia!) but I love how you make information available so people can see they can afford to do something like this in their own homes.

  9. Michelle says:

    Thanks for sharing your experience with F&B paint. I chose their color Elephant’s Breath for my small walk in closet and but was shocked at both the sticker price and the two week lead time to get it from my local Sherwin Williams design center. I opted to use the SW Revere Pewter, which is a color match and could be mixed and ready to carry out same day. I still don’t know if the price tag is “worth” it for F&B paint, but if I chose a particularly nuanced color – their specialty – and it was a prime room, not a closet, I might remember your words and try it. But for other readers, I am here to say yes you can color match for a more reasonable price with quality paint. Although it may take finding the right SW design consultant to help you find the equivalent – they are prohibited from color matching from the chips. I respect F&Bs creative rights and color matching may be like buying a knockoff. But money is hard earned and you can decide where and how to spend it, am I right?.

  10. Jamie says:

    So many takeaways from this great room! I think that the things that take it to the next level for me is the custom mirror, the lighting, and the custom curtains. I can see how investing in a few really special things can really pay off big. Lovely!

  11. Lorna says:

    LOVE the closet. First class.
    In the middle of building and designing the master closet.
    Such great ideas and functional

  12. Emily Lyons says:

    You do such amazing work, I’ve been do inspired by your projects for our own home, thank you! I have a question about the paint in here, I loved the color so much I was thinking of using it in our bedroom, looking closer I can’t quite tell, is your trim painted the same color or is it different? Whichever it is, it is beautiful and I’d like to recreate!

  13. Angela Ferry Sewell says:

    I am shocked by the price of your drapes–I thought it would be two or three times as much! Was the custom process stressful?

  14. Katie says:

    Can I just say how much I love your gracious manner? Not only are you willing to share the budget breakdown, but to take the time to create a ‘look for less’ with sources is very kind and generous. Your finished project looks well-worth the cost: prettiest dressing room. ever. Glamorous yet timeless and classic, with thought in every detail. Kudos to you!

  15. Tianna says:

    I have a question about the price of the pax system. Does the price you listed include the trim and drawer fronts?

  16. melissab says:

    I’m curious if you used the IKEA shelves or if you replaced those with something else. I just bought the largest PAX option and even shelves with nothing on them yet have started to have a bow to them so I wonder if you have the same issue or if you reinforced/replaced the shelves to avoid this. Thanks!

  17. Erin Parks says:

    Could you include how many labor hours were needed (Chris + helpers). Sometimes I see all of this awesomeness, and the lowish price tag , and think: we should do this! But if I knew it took 25 person hours + 8 tools that I don’t own, then I’d be more realistic about my ability to DIY and more realistic when I put it to contractors to bid. The closet is beautiful!!! Great job!!!

  18. Amz says:

    Oooh I love budget breakdowns! The closet looks so luxurious. How you choose to spend/splurge your money is your decision and I’m happy you share the look for less options allowing me to decide what I could splurge and save on.

  19. Stephanie says:

    I love it. Its stunning and you guys did a fabulous job. We have a master closet that has slanted ceilings. Do you think its possible with your experience with the PAX systems to use them/modify them to work?

  20. Sophia says:

    I’m pinning this NOW! Thank you for taking the time to search for great dupes and for encouraging us to mix high and low. Such great advice! This room is a dreamy boutique just for you. Makes me swoooon every time I see it!

  21. This is the closet of my dreams. I think it’s amazing that you are supporting small shops and also give people a lower budget option. Amazing work.

  22. Kim says:

    The mirror is what makes this closet top notch special in my book!
    And is the cost quoted for the curtains just for fabric or also including labor?
    Thank you!

  23. Prima Hayter says:

    I noticed that you didn’t include the cost of all the trim you used to customize the Ikea pax cabinets. Were those included into your pax figures, or would you please share those extra costs? Those extra details really made a huge difference in your finished product, and it would be nice to know sources and costs. Thank you so much!

  24. Lauren says:

    I appreciate the budget options! But I think you should also include an approximate cost for labor. Your husband did the majority of the work, so it was free for you, but most of us don’t have someone that talented in our lives so would need to hire someone to do A LOT of that work.

  25. Joanna says:

    I still cannot get over how luxe this room looks! I know that you put in a lot of extra work to the make the PAX system look more custom but it still boggles my mind that is is from IKEA!

  26. Brianne says:

    Love that you shared the mirror from PB! How does it compare in height to yours? I’m in the market for a full length mirror. Thanks!

  27. Amanda says:

    I love these posts! The pottery barn mirror has me as shook as your custom mirror ????

  28. alexandra says:

    My husband and I are planning on redoing our closet with OAX . I had a weird question. where did you put your laundry basket or what do you for dirty laundry? i didn’t see one in the master. Just curious and we are trying to find a way to make our laundry look a part of the closet

  29. Jen says:

    My dream closet! Well done!

    I want to do this in my new build that we’re just starting. Did you include the cost of the wood for the crown/drawer fronts?

  30. EmilyH says:

    What’s the difference between a very pricey paint like Farrow & Ball and a less expensive paint? Is the coverage better? Or are you mainly Just paying for the exact color match you’re going for?

  31. Kelly says:

    I think “look for less” posts are great!! Like you say, Julia, it’s all about choices! I appreciate someone with an eye for beautiful design pulling together a look and then helping me see how to achieve it with high/low options so I get to make my own choices about where/if to splurge. Also, these kinds of posts help me develop my own design skills! Comparing the high/low options helps me see “ah, ok….so it’s this feature and that feature that really define this look or make it work…”. Thanks for making beautiful design more accessible!

  32. Sarah says:

    Ditto! I love the look for less posts, too! It’s helpful to know there are more options out there, since we wouldn’t be able to swing the other version. Beautiful room ????

  33. Cici Haus says:

    Thank you for sharing! I would definitely splurge on that chandelier *heart eyes* and save elsewhere, so I love seeing these. I am very interested in how the Farrow and Ball paint holds up on the cabinets – wanting to splurge on it for our kitchen cabinets but I’ve heard mixed reviews.

  34. Kaitlyn says:

    Out of curiosity, how much was the molding and crown that you added to the IKEA system? I’d love to do this in my closet, but my husband always needs a full budget breakdown for anything we do ;) I so appreciate these posts because of that to at least give him a ballpark! Thanks again for sharing this – LOVE how it turned out!

  35. Stephanie says:

    I am in love with the curtains! It looks like each panel is double width? Is it blackout? Euro pleat? Can you tell us more about them and the details for the cost? I always thought custom drapery would cost way more than that (like in $1k+), so I’ve never even thought about doing it. It’ll be super helpful to get the breakdown for the cost. Thank you!

  36. Amy says:

    I LOVE the “look for less” posts. Most of us are not designers and the high end pieces don’t mean as much to us. But we like the look and it’s empowering to know we can achieve a similar aesthetic and function on a budget that’s more realistic for us.

    • Sarah says:

      Agreed! Especially for those of us in a rental, who may move to a place with a different size/style/vibe and are therefore less inclined to invest in pieces that may not be permanent.

    • J Stuart says:

      Great post! You have great taste and I appreciate that you splurge and save. Although I may not be able to afford all of the higher end items, I much prefer to see them as opposed to the bloggers who stick to budget-only items.

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We believe we should all love where we live.

We’re a couple of homebodies, working to uncover the home our home wants to be. And we’re so happy to have you here. 

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