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Design & DIY Inspiration Blog

DIY Wood Slat Doors : Ikea Closet Hack

DIY Slat closet doors remodel

One of our most popular DIY projects and it was a relatively easy one! The design goal was to achieve a light & airy, Scandinavian style sliding doors.

When we bought the house, this wide closet had only a single shelf and rod that stretched the length of the closet (along with full length mirror doors). I was blessed with my own walk-in closet in our last home, so we needed to get creative with storage solutions since we were downsizing closet space. It just so happened that the IKEA PAX system would fit perfectly inside the framed closet, so away we went with planning out storage space. Besides a few heavy winter items, we were able to accommodate both our clothes without having to downsize our wardrobes.

Ikea PAX Closet Hack

Since the PAX system fit inside a framed closet, the standard IKEA doors would not work with the system. (See how the framed walls protrude over the closet frames). This was okay, because I had a different aesthetic in mind anyways.


Slat walls, slat doors, and slat furniture are making big waves these days and I couldn't help but get in on the fun! Since this is a small room, I wanted to incorporate slat doors, which would offer a sense of additional depth in the room. The light wood tones would also coordinate with our bedroom furniture and provided a contrast with the opposite dark grey wall.

Due to the pull out drawers in the middle closet sections, we wouldn't be able to simply use a by-pass door system, because the opening clearance wouldn't accommodate the pull out drawers. So, we used a multi-pass (3) door system. I'll do my best to walk through how we built these and what materials we used. Of course, if you have any questions, please reach out!


Johnson Sliding door hardware: We ordered ours through Home Depot.

  • Tip: Johnson hardware offers many different widths and styles of track. They even offer tracks that are up to 142" long. Our closet is actually 116 wide. However, the track to fit this opening would come with a $125 oversized shipping cost. To avoid that charge, we ordered the 106" track and simply offset the ball bearing door hangers further inside the doors. (Example: rather than have them located 3" from the door edge, we located ours 7" from the door edge, to ensure that the door would fully close without the door hanger coming loose from the track.

Birch Plywood Veneer : We used a birch veneer 4'x8'x1/2" in size and cut the boards into 2" strips to create the slats.

Common Board : We used 1x10x8 common board to build the frames. The horizontal frame braces were cut into 4" strips and the vertical frame pieces are 2" strips (to match the slat width).

2" Corner Bracket : These are for creating the outer frames of the doors

1.5" Corner Bracket: These are for securing the middle brace to the door frame

1/2" White MDF Base Moulding : We used this to create the trim across the top of the closet that serves to conceal the track

3/4" Corner Round & 1" MDF Base Moulding : We utilized this for the floor track.

1" MDF Base Moulding : We used this for the header that the ceiling track attaches to

1" Finishing Nails : (We utilized 1" finishing nails so that we could secure the slats to the frames, from the backside, so that we wouldn't need to fill holes on the fronts side.


Wood Glue


Table Saw


Nail Gun


Clamps (not necessary but very helpful)


Step 1: Determine your door dimensions. Be sure to account for a 2" overlap on the bypassing doors. This will ensure that you don't have an gaps, when the doors are closed. Also be sure to account for the height of the ball bearing door hangers (as well as the celing header for the track) and subtract that height from you finished door height.

Step 2: Build your door frames utilizing the corner braces and a square.

DIY Slat Closet Door Instructions

Step 3: Secure the middle wood brace using the 1.5" corner braces.

DIY Slat Closet Door Instructions

Step 4: For additional strength we screwed the exterior frame corners from the exterior of the frame, as well.

DIY slat closet doors instructions

Step 5: Attach the end slats to the frames and beginning laying out the slats using a "spacer" that is the appropriate width. Our gap is 1", so we cut a 1" spacer to lay out the slats. We used clamps to assist in keeping the slats in place while glueing and nailing.

DIY slat closet door instructions

Step 6: Apply glue to the backside of the slats and attach to frame. Then nail the slats to the frame from the backside of the door.

DIY slat closet door instructions

Step 7: Once all the doors were assembled, I used a water based urethane and applied 2 coats to the wood. (You can see the difference between the left half and the right half, which has a coat applied.

DIY slat closet doors instructions

Step 8: Install the ball bearing door hangers and door guides on the doors per manufacturers instructions. If you are installing a multi-pass door (3 or more), you'll also want to install door catchers, so that the doors catch and slide together, when moving from one side to the other.

Step 9. Install a header to the ceiling (This will disperse the load and carry the wight of the doors). The header attaches to ceiling joists and the track attaches to the header). We used 1" thick MDF moulding to make the header. You can see the screws used to anchor the header.

Step 10: Install the ceiling track and floor guides, per manufacturers instructions.

DIY slat closet door tri-pass instructions

Photo Above: Ceiling Track attached to header

DIY Slat closet doors tri-fold track

Tip (Photo Above): We didn't end up using the metal floor guide that came with the hardware, since it wasn't the full length of the closet opening and we wanted it that way for aesthetics. Instead, we built our own floor guide out of trim and quarter-round to guide the doors. (Note these haven't been painted yet, since painting is my least favorite activity, this last step is taking longer than it should to complete!)

Step 11: Hang the Doors

Step 12: Install the1/2" x 3.5" trim across the opening, at the ceiling. This will conceal the metal tracks. (This piece also still needs to be painted. September's looking good for that!)

DIY slat closet doors tri-pass sliding

Step 13: Sit back and enjoy the view!

DIY Slat Closet Doors Tri-pass sliding

If this has inspired you to build your own closet doors, please be sure to take a pic and tag us on Instagram at @Hyyge_Spruce!

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Sarah Ismail
Sarah Ismail

This is so lovely. I’m curious to know now that it’s been over a year, how did it hold up? Has any of the word warped?


Thank you Sarah! The doors have held up really well. There is no warping and the tracks continue to operate smoothly. 🤗


Holly Cook
Holly Cook

Amazing idea! Looks so good. Real quick, what are your closet dimensions?


Hi Holly! Yep, I did a very light sanding by with a fine sand paper between coats. Sounds like you're getting so close - I can't wait to see your project! 🤗


Kelly Liptan
Kelly Liptan

My husband and I have started a similar project to enclose our outdoor laundry area which is a similar width as your space here. We are looking into getting doors custom made but I know it's going to be $$$$. How much of the common board did you need to get?


Hi Kelly, Your project sounds exciting! We used 4 common board sheets to build the frames for the doors. I know what you mean about custom ordered doors- I had explored that option too, but it was out of budget. The silver lining is that we ended up loving the results of this project and saved money, at the same time!

Good luck- don't hesitate to reach out with further questions, and if you go this route, I'd love to see your own version of this DIY. 🤗

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