Last month I shared on my Insta Story how excited I was to have gotten a new custom IKEA PAX wardrobe in our bedroom! I’m on a storage, home improvement, and organization kick this year and the IKEA wardrobe closet has already made such a difference in our home.
I’m thinking when all is said and done I’ll do a Storage Ideas for City Living post since it’s been quite a process. But for now, let’s focus on one thing that has completely changed how we store things in our bedroom—the IKEA PAX wardrobe!
Also if you are looking for some really brilliant organization/storage items for things like jewelry and sunglasses, here’s everything I bought on Amazon that I use inside my IKEA PAX closet. I talk about each of them specifically in the Tips section of this post!
This post is not sponsored by IKEA; I’m just really loving our new custom closet and friends and readers have been asking about it.
While it’s amazing and I’m so happy that we got one, I do think there are some important things to know about it if you’re getting an IKEA PAX wardrobe, and knowing these things ahead of time can help make the process of ordering one much smoother.
So that’s why I’m writing this IKEA PAX review, and I highly suggest you read other IKEA Wardrobe reviews before purchasing, as these custom wardrobe closets have so many options, and reading reviews can help you figure out what’s best for you! Read on for my full IKEA PAX Wardrobe review…
IKEA PAX Wardrobe Review
IKEA PAX Wardrobe Review Pros:
It’s totally custom! Think of it as your IKEA personalized closet. With this custom wardrobe closet, you get to decide how many drawers, shelves, and pull-outs you want in your custom closet.
Your first step is to use IKEA’s PAX planner online to map out which size and length system you want, and what you want to put in your PAX planner in terms of types of shelves, how many, etc., and then just hit “add to cart.”
There are also a lot of different options for jewelry/accessory drawers, pull-outs for hanging things, types of doors, etc.
Price point: How much does an Ikea closet cost?
The IKEA PAX wardrobe is at a relatively affordable price point. I think when all was said and done, we paid $1,200 for our custom IKEA PAX wardrobe, including delivery and set up.
Ability to shop the IKEA PAX closet online:
Being able to design your custom PAX wardrobe online and purchase online is a huge plus.
While the Pax planner isn’t the most user-friendly, it got the job done for me and made it easy to add what I needed to my cart and checkout.
I will say, this section could also easily go in the “Cons” list, because shopping online at IKEA can be so frustrating—if you can get delivery like I did, it’s great.
But oftentimes delivery for the IKEA PAX wardrobe isn’t available and you have to do in-store pickup—sometimes hopping around to multiple IKEA’s when the pieces you need aren’t all in stock at one store.
Mirror sliding doors for the PAX closet:
I love the mirror sliding doors on our closet! It’s a big piece of furniture, so having mirrors on it opens everything up and makes the room feel bigger.
Plus it’s so great when I’m getting ready in the morning to have a giant mirror in our bedroom.
There are tons of different IKEA closet doors that you can choose from, but the IKEA mirrored wardrobe closet was an easy choice for me, especially since I can use them for Insta Story try-on hauls.
I was really happy to see how smoothly everything glides! The drawers, doors, and pull-out rack for my pants all roll really smoothly.
This was something I was a little nervous about since it is IKEA and sometimes things can be a bit off if you know what I mean!
Can be used inside or outside of your closet:
The IKEA closet organizer can be used inside of your closet to keep things organized (a friend recently put one in her baby’s nursery closet and it is just perfect for organizing all the tiny socks, diapers, and onesies), OR you can use it as I did as additional storage space outside of your closet.
IKEA PAX Wardrobe Review Cons:
Back of closet:
I was definitely disappointed to see that the back of the closet is not wood, but thin white cardboard strips. It’s not noticeable now that all my stuff is in there, and I get that one solid piece of wood for the back would be a really heavy board, but for the price, I was expecting solid walls on all sides.
The setup is very difficult, and absolutely not doable with one person. Definitely hire someone to do this for you!
At some points in the setup process, we actually needed three people—two strong men to lift the mirrored IKEA closet doors, and me to guide them onto the tracks.
I hired a Task Rabbit who specialized in putting together furniture, and when he arrived and saw that I had an IKEA PAX closet that needed to be put together he was like…ugh. Lol.
He said he had done these before and that this was going to take more than the two hours we had scheduled through Task Rabbit. So just so you know, someone who specializes in putting together IKEA furniture took a while to put this together!
While the Task Rabbit worked on the heavy/difficult parts of the IKEA PAX closet setup, I put together all of the drawers. So all in all, including the Task Rabbit’s time and my time, set up took around five hours.
Fewer options for less deep versions:
There are tons of options for drawers and pull-outs for the deeper version of the IKEA PAX wardrobe, but if you do the less deep version, which is the one we went with in order to fit this closet in our bedroom in front of our bed, there are a limited amount of options.
At first, I was really disappointed when I realized this in the store because I was particularly excited about all of the jewelry/accessory drawer options.
I got over it and got creative with ordering other, separate storage solutions like sunglasses pull-out drawers, and jewelry holders, that are now stacked inside my closet. More deets on this are below.
But just something to note that with IKEA custom closets, not all the drawers are available for the less deep version.
Now for some tips! If you’re ordering a custom IKEA PAX closet, be sure to:
Go into an IKEA store to design your closet
While you can use IKEA’s website to use the software to design your custom IKEA PAX wardrobe, it’s frankly kinda confusing and not the most intuitive software.
At first, I thought doing this at home sounded like a really convenient option, but I quickly got frustrated when things weren’t working the way I wanted them to.
It’s also just really helpful to see the different sizes, doors, and accessory options in person so you can get an idea of what you want in your custom closet.
Choose the delivery option for your IKEA PAX closet
This stuff is heavy, you guys. When the delivery men came to drop off all 22 of the pieces that would make up our IKEA closet system, they were absolutely huffing and puffing—and they had a dolly.
I can’t even imagine trying to transport all of these heavy pieces myself, even if I had a truck that would fit it all.
Does IKEA Install closets? Select the option to have IKEA set up your closet for you
Note that when you are ordering your closet, the IKEA rep will tell you that you cannot have IKEA set up your custom wardrobe closet for you if you have baseboards.
They will tell you that your only option is to remove the baseboards before the setup guys come.
We have half-inch thick baseboards and there’s no way we’re about to tear out baseboards in our apartment. We really didn’t get what the big issue was and asked if there was some waiver we could sign or something to acknowledge that yes, we have thin baseboards, but we still want IKEA to set up our close for us.
Unfortunately, the rep at the store insisted that the delivery men would not be able to set up our closet if we have baseboards, so we decided to just have the pieces delivered and we would get someone from Handy or Task Rabbit to set up the closet for us.
This worked out ok, but as I mentioned above it really is a two-person job to set up this giant closet, so Omied ended up having to help our guy from Handy, and it took about five hours.
What we should have done (and what you should do too if you’re ordering an IKEA closet system), is to just say at the store that you don’t have baseboards, and schedule the IKEA guys to do the setup for you (even if you do have baseboards).
Unless your baseboards are super thick, they will still set it up and make sure that the top of the closet is attached to your wall. A friend of mine went this route and the IKEA guys still set up her closet for her.
I wish I knew that before I ordered mine!
As a heads up, if you do have baseboards, your closet will obviously not be 100% flush against the wall and straight vertical. This isn’t noticeable when you look at it, but it does mean that due to the slight lean back when I open the drawers in my IKEA closet, the self-closing drawers will always slide closed if I’m not holding them.
This is only annoying in cases where I would want my drawers to stay out, like when I’m putting away laundry.
Measure everything ahead of time
I was hoping we’d be able to get the deeper version of the IKEA closet, but that just wasn’t going to be possible with the space we had in our bedroom.
Another thing to note is that if the room where you’ll be setting up the closet is different than where the closet is actually going to stand, you’ll want to make sure you’ll be able to actually carry the tall closet through your hall/doorway/whatever.
We had to do some serious maneuvering in order to get our closet from the living room where it was being set up, into your bedroom, including opening our front door to get some of the closet outside and pivoting and turning the closet on its side in order to fit through our bedroom door.
And most importantly we had to lift the tall closet up into a standing position by lying it down on its face first and then hoisting it up, rather than carrying it into the room sideways and just standing it up, as that would have scratched the ceiling.
Think about other elements you can tie together
Make sure your IKEA wardrobe closet meets your needs. I bought a few additional storage items from Amazon including stackable sunglasses pull-out drawers and stackable velvet ring holder and bracelet holder trays.
I also have a ton of necklaces and added these plastic hooks to the sides of the wall around the shelf where I’m storing necklaces/earrings, as well as these pretty wooden blocks with gold hooks for more earrings.
I also added a gold necklace holder with a basket at the top to put other things like watches.
Lastly, I’m an earrings girl, so I’ve got a lot of those too. I like to use earring holders so that I can easily see everything, and I have a couple of these acrylic earring holders that easily fold up. I love them!
I also discovered these shoe organizers on Amazon, and they are quite frankly brilliant. I quickly ran out of shoe space and using these little shoe organizers to stack your heels doubles your shoe storage space on your shelves!
One last thing that I added to my drawers: These super handy adjustable drawer organizers. These are especially great for my top drawer which has underwear, socks, gloves, and sports bras in them.
Instead of my socks spilling over on top of my underwear, each category is neatly sectioned off within my drawer.
Ok, that’s my scoop on our new IKEA PAX Wardrobe! I hope this IKEA PAX review was helpful for you.
I have some DIY blogger friends that have taken this a step further and done custom cabinet doors and paint jobs on their IKEA PAX wardrobe and they look absolutely amazing. Maybe something for me to try in the future, but I don’t know if I’m handy enough!
Like I said I’m absolutely loving it and I think IKEA custom closets are the shit and a brilliant idea. I’m so happy to have a super clean storage solution in our bedroom for all of my jewelry, handbags, shoes…and some of Omied’s clothes too. 😉
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Yes, the IKEA Pax wardrobes are definitely worth the investment. You can organize and customize your closet space under a budget. The quality is also nice and sturdy.
Yes, of course, you can customize an IKEA Pax wardrobe! The whole point of the IKEA Pax is to build a custom wardrobe that fits you and your living space.
It is pretty difficult to assemble an IKEA Pax Wardrobe, which is why it is easier to get the IKEA staff to help you set it up or hire a task rabbit.
Sunday 5th of February 2023
The pull outs for the pants, that’s cool! I didn’t see that option when I did the pax layout. What is that piece called?
Tuesday 7th of February 2023
Try searching for pull-out pants hanger! The style looks a little different than when I did my pax closet but same idea: https://www.ikea.com/us/en/p/komplement-pull-out-pants-hanger-white-60446545/
Tuesday 24th of January 2023
An option if you don't want to remove baseboards but want your unit to not tilt back would be to attached a header board to the wall behind the closet the same thickness as the baseboards.
Sunday 29th of January 2023
Thanks for the tip!
Monday 10th of October 2022
Thank you for your honesty/clarity. My daughter is moving to another state and I am being recruited to install one of these monsters. I appreciate the heads up about the cardboard backing and baseboard situations. Earthquake zones dictate that the unit be secured to the wall (as you pointed out - these are HEAVY) and the last thing you want is one of these sections falling in you. I will prepaint the white cardboard a different color before installing it. Is/are there lighting options under any counter spaces available?
Sunday 16th of October 2022
Hi Annette, glad the post was helpful! IKEA does have some lighting options but I also found these on Amazon: https://bit.ly/3TlYact
We did a second IKEA Pax project in our walk-in closet in our new house (I still need to do a blog post on that one!) and I used these stick-on recharchable lights from Amazon and love them.
Good luck with your project!