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Built-In IKEA PAX Wardrobe

My favorite wardrobe system of all time is the IKEA PAX wardrobe. First, it is so versatile. It can be used in a walk-in closet, standalone, or built-in against a wall. Second, the organization is awesome. There are pull-outs for shoes and pants, jewelry organizers, and soft close drawers - the best.

We had the IKEA PAX Wardrobe system in our old house, we have it on our new house, and we will probably have it in the next house we purchase. 10 out of 10 would recommend over here! In our old house, we had a massive walk-in closet that could fit all the clothes we owned. We lived in the suburbs then, so there is more space out there. Now we live in the city, so our house and our closets are smaller.

The closet we have in our bedroom now barely fits Matt’s clothes, so we needed to create some extra storage. We built the IKEA PAX wardrobes in three corners of our bedroom. In one that had some extra space and on either side of our bed to frame it and create a pseudo end table.

You will see from the pictures that we had already built the PAX wardrobe. We definitely procrastinated on this project! We started this 3 years ago, sooo...we had some work to do. We also added a 2x4 on either side of the PAX to create space, so the door will not hit the window when it opens.

Here is what our wardrobe has looked like for the past 3 years. Time to make this sucker look built-in.

How to Built-In IKEA PAX Wardrobe


Trim Paint (We used Pure White by Sherwin Williams in Satin)

Crown Moulding - cut to size

Shoe Moulding - cut to size

Wood to attach to the top of the wardrobe


1. To make this look built-in, you will not want there to be any gaps between the top of the wardrobe and the ceiling. To do this, you will need measure the gap between the top of the wardrobe and the ceiling. Then subtract the height of the crown moulding and find wood that is thick enough to cover the gap and at least 1/2 inches taller than the end of the moulding. For our ceiling, we only needed a 1 1/2in X 4in board.

2. Attach the wood boards to the top of the wardrobe using the brad nailer. Attach these from inside the wardrobe. This is what the wardrobe will look like.

3. Measure the length and width of the PAX wardrobe and cut the crown moulding according to size using the Kreg jig. Check out my post here on how to hang crown moulding and use the Kreg Jig.

4. Attach the crown moulding to the ceiling and the wood using a brad nailer. Add the shoe moulding to the side using the brad nailer.

5. If you have existing crown moulding and you don’t want to take it down like me, then you can cut out the corner or side of the moulding in the same shape as the existing moulding using a jigsaw. You may have to shave off some of the back of the moulding to make it fit. There will be a gap, but you can fill it in with caulk.

6. Fill in the nail holes with wood filler. Let dry and sand off.

7. Fill in the gaps between boards, the wall, and the ceiling with caulk. Let dry.

8. Paint using the color of your choice. Repeat until you have the right coverage. If you are working with a lot of wood, you should use a primer before you paint.

There you have a built-in PAX Wardrobe!

Isn’t the PAX so versatile? Adding the crown molding is a quick add that makes this wardrobe look like it was built into the house. You will not regret choosing the PAX as your closet system. It is the real deal.

This room was really small, so I didn't have space for bedside tables. Instead a made some storage cubbies to act like bedside tables on both sides. I used these baskets from the Container Store, attached and stained a small piece of wood on the inside, and then attached to the side of the Pax.

Have you done a project like this at your house? Send me some pics!


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