Without a doubt, our garage has always been the most disorganised space in our house. Luckily no-one ever goes in there except us, which I suppose is also where the problem starts. Garages can all too easily become a disorganised, cluttered dumping ground! They are also the most unexciting space to organise, hence why I've put it off for so long. But I knew in the long run it would make things so much easier, especially because my husband enjoys building things, and I'm always getting him to do little jobs around the house.
On the next episode of The Organised You TV, I'll be showing the garage makeover. Today I thought I'd show you the dreadful 'before' shots and talk about why this space really hasn't been working for us... some you may be able to relate to as well!
We used to have a really enormous garage space, but when we renovated, half of it became our master bedroom (which you can see through the garage door in the photo below), and an extension of the hallway, which is where the new storage cupboard was built.
After the renovation, we were left with a garage about a quarter of its previous size. We tried to organise it by installing shelving on both sides, and a work bench for my husband. You can see some of my labelled boxes on the left too. This set-up worked for a while, but there just wasn't enough space for the amount of stuff we had. I believe that the different areas of your house always need to be revisited as time goes by, in order to maintain the level of organisation.
We decided to build the garden shed so we could relocate all the gardening supplies and free-standing shelving units, and create more garage space. This is what it looked like before we did this:
I thought removing these things would make a massive difference to the amount of crapola we had but... not so much. There was still a lot of clearing to be done!
Here were the main problem areas in the garage:
Problem Area 1: Work bench
Because Damian's work bench is to the right of the door, it always becomes a dumping ground. And because it was never properly organised to begin with (apart from the cork peg-board for hanging tools), it was easier - and lazier - just to leave things on the bench. This became very frustrating when it came time to actually start a project because there was already such a mess!
Problem Area 2: Tool storage
Damian's tools were shoved under the work bench, but as the collection grew, we had to store some on the bench, and some on nearby shelves. We also weren't taking very good care of them.
Problem Area 3: Paint & stain storage
I really do like these shelves as a shed/garage storage solution, but when the collection of paint and stain is this big, the shelves aren't really adequate. The tins then got mixed in with house and garden supplies, and it became a pain to try and find anything. Then, once we moved the shelving units to the shed, we had nowhere to store our paint supply!
Problem Area 4: Bike storage
Our bikes have never had a storage 'spot'. Instead we have just been moving them whenever we need to get to something else. Not ideal.
Problem Area 5: Access
Despite having labelled storage containers and knowing where most things were, it became impossible to actually get to them because of the amount of stuff. So things just began piling up in the middle of the floor!
Can you relate to any of these struggles or mess? Believe me, it was a hard project to start, and took several weekends of sorting, purging, and sorting some more, but now that it's done I'm over the moon! Sometimes starting can be the hardest part! Stay tuned for the next episode of The Organised You TV to see how we organised our garage!
Here are some more garage organisation ideas:
If you'd like to learn the step-by-step process for tackling the decluttering of any space in your home, you can check out my guided, online course 'Chaos to Calm' right here! >>