While remodeling our bathroom, I accidentally knocked our old medicine cabinet over and broke it.
The bathroom originally had a retro-styled metal cabinet with an unusually-shaped mirrored door. I took it off the wall to paint, and promptly forgot that the cabinet was propped against the bathtub. I walked in with an armful of painting gear and crashed right into it. The cabinet fell over, the mirror shattered, and I looked at it and just knew it would probably not be worth fixing from a financial standpoint.
So, I filled in the wall where the old cabinet used to be, repainted, and kept the contents of the medicine cabinet in a basket on the vanity. The basket of cabinet contents stayed there for months, as we couldn’t find another medicine cabinet that we liked as much as the original one.
Then, one day, I spotted a medicine cabinet on clearance at Meijer.
Meijer was also having a 50% off clearance sale, which dropped this cabinet to a cool $8.75. Its design wasn’t our first choice style-wise, but after months of living without one, it would get the medicine gear off our vanity and back on the wall.
(How funny is it that Meijer marked this $75.01% off? That extra .01% tipped it in for me, even before the extra 50% off clearance!)
I brought the cabinet home and put it together. This Zenna Home Wall Cabinet is made of white particle board with a cardboard backer and glass windows in the doors. (Yes, the door panes are made of frosted glass – not plastic, so that’s a plus.)
While Amazon and other sites sell this cabinet model for more than $60 (and a slightly different model with an additional towel bar,) I would not recommend overpaying for something like this. It’s pretty typical for what you’d expect from put-together furniture.
Once I assembled the cabinet, I was a little disappointed that it has exposed screws from the shelves’ installation on each side — something I hadn’t noticed in the box photo. It also comes with white plastic caps to cover the screws, but they don’t sit flat. At first glance, it might have passed for something nicer, but to me, the exposed plastic screw caps scream “This really isn’t a high-quality piece of furniture.”
But again… I paid $8.75. It was certainly better than not having a cabinet at all. We hung the cabinet up, and it was fantastic to once again have a home for all of our over-the-counter medicines and first-aid supplies.
A few days later, I had an idea. What if I could improve the cabinet by concealing the plastic screw covers and add even more storage at the same time?
During the remodel, I’d also been considering a wall rack for my hair dryer and curling iron, mainly because it would be nice to have a “hot-item storage” area where these items could be put away hot and left to cool without becoming a fire hazard. What if I added some open storage like this to each side of the cabinet?
I measured the sides of the cabinet and the next time I headed to Menards, I checked out their organization and storage aisles for ideas.
That’s when I spotted these:
These 6.5″ x 5″ chrome wire baskets seemed perfect for the job! At $6 each, I was now spending more on cabinet accessories than the entire cabinet cost, but I knew my husband would also be thrilled to have my hair appliances off the vanity. (For those outside of the Menards market area, Amazon carries them too.)
I also picked up four small open and four small closed S-hooks to mount the baskets. (Ace Hardware is a great place to grab these, as they sell them loose for about a quarter each.)
Adding the baskets required no actual alterations to the cabinet at all — I simply unscrewed each cabinet screw, added a closed S-hook to it, and screwed it back in. (I even replaced the plastic caps!) Then, I inserted an open S-hook into the bottom of each closed S-hook to hang each chrome basket on.
With a basket on each side, I now have plenty of room for hair tools, brushes, the TV remote, or anything else! (Oh yes, I have a TV in the bathroom too — something I highly recommend. But that’s another post…)
As exciting as it was to find a medicine cabinet on clearance for under $10, I am even more excited about it since this improvement. Now, it looks like the screws on the sides are intentionally placed for even more storage.
While I originally purchased this cabinet as a “temporary” replacement until we could find one we really liked, I’m pretty sure it will remain a fixture in our bathroom for years to come. Temporary solutions do have a way of turning into permanet ones..!