Best Organizers For a Small Garage

(Updated 3/22/2018)

Take Back Your Garage!

tidy garage

Today, we’re talking about the best organizers you can use for any garage but especially for a small garage.

How would you like to pull into your garage and be able to retrieve packages from the trunk or back seat and not have to walk sideways to get to the door of the house?  Been there…done that!

Well, it can all happen if you just designate one weekend – maybe even one day – to getting out there and make it happen!

Do you need to declutter?

First things first, of course. If you’ve got a garage full of clutter the first thing you need to do is sort it all out.

Bagster Dumpster in a Bag

Sort everything into three piles:

1.Toss – things to toss include broken toys, broken tools and anything that is beyond repair. To make tossing things easier, consider buying a Bagster (Dumpster in a Bag).  You can get them at home improvement stores or online. They’re pretty slick, actually. You fill it up, call for a pickup and there you go! No more trash. 

2. Sell or Donate – If you haven’t used it for more than a year, you probably don’t need it. Have a garage sale. Maybe your neighborhood has an annual yard sale for spring cleaning.

This is a good way to involve the family. Kids will be happy to help if they think they can make a bit of money from their old treasures.

At the end of the sale, donate those items left to a charity. Many of them are happy to come collect leftovers especially if it’s a neighborhood sale.

3. Keep – After sorting everything that’s going to go (one way or another), you’ll be able to see what needs to fit into the  space in the garage.

That’s where a good storage system comes into play.  You can choose from wall organizers, storage cabinets and overhead storage. Here are some suggestions for the best organizers you can buy.

Wall Storage

Rough Rack 4 x 4 Tool Rack

Rough Rack 4 x 4 Tool Rack

Best sellers:

The product description of this Rough Rack 4×4 Tool Rack states:

All racks are Constructed of welded powder coated steel and hold over 100lbs of equipment Perfect for both home and commercial use – garage, maintenance facilities etc.”

The reviews are excellent – check them out. Think of everything you can store on the walls and a couple of these should do the trick!

Overhead Storage

Honestly, if you can put your garage ceiling to use, you’ll be amazed at the number of things you can get out of your way.

This video from Jay’s Custom Creations gives step by step instructions for creating overhead storage in your garage.

Cabinets and Counters for the Garage

How about this beauty! AND…as of this post Amazon is offering free shipping PLUS it’s on sale (20% off)!

New Age Garage Storage Cabinets

New Age Garage Storage Cabinet

  • 1 multi-use locker, 2 wall cabinets, 1 base cabinet, 1 rolling tool cabinet and one 48 in. Stainless steel worktop and the dimensions are 78 in. W x 18 in. D x 77.25 in. H
  • The doors have full length handles with locks.

You can get variations on this theme, also…just figure out what your needs are and browse what’s available.  Most of these require at least some assembly.  One of the nice things about this is that often you’re eligible for free shipping.

So there are tons of possible solutions for garage storage.  Here are some of other pieces to consider.

Now that you’ve got the garage problem solved, you might want to evaluate the room you have inside your home!

I’ve have listed lots of suggestions on how to do that in the post How to Get More Space Without Moving.

I’d love to hear from you. Let me know in the comments if you agree that these are the best storage solutions for small garages.  Or any size garage..

If you’ve found other solutions for garage or storage rooms or have suggestions, please let me know that, as well.

Thanks for stopping by. Stay tuned!

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Clever Uses for Shower Caddies

I’m so mad at myself!

I just donated two perfectly good shower caddies that I didn’t need since I’ve replaced the showers in both bathrooms and there are shelves integrated into the walls.

kitchen caddySo today I see that House Beautiful.com has posted nine clever uses for shower caddies that are pure genius.  Here are four of them.

For example, this clever kitchen helper was the brainchild of blogger Holly from Down to Earth Style.  She has a tutorial on how to convert it from a shower caddy into a useful kitchen storage piece.  Holly has this hanging on the side of her kitchen island which is quite brilliant!

Here’s a terrific idea if you have a small balcony…hang this little planter shelf on one of the walls.

wall planter

Or group two or three of them on a wall or fence.   You could have small pots of fresh herbs!

Also, perfect for air plants…I love air plants.  My house is a bit dark so finding a spot for plants with enough light is tricky.  Plus I do travel a bit and air plants need next to nothing care.

For more information on how to create this pretty shower caddy garden go to P&G Everyday.

ribbon caddyHere’s another clever transformation…and one that I fully intend to implement, myself!  My craft/gift wrap closet is not pretty.

I’m forever untangling ribbon that has managed to escape from the spool. This ribbon caddy is a good solution.  I’ll hang it on the inside of the door to the closet.

House Beautiful found the original on Charlotte Meyn’s website.  She’s a designer and her website is Sonoma Decorative Arts.  This is something she created for the San Francisco Designer Showhouse.

So, I’m thinking that you’ll be able to come up with other great hacks for shower caddies.  I sure do wish I had those two that I gave away.

On the other hand, since I donated them to a charity shop, I know someone who needs them will be pleased to find them.

What other home organizers could be repurposed into something else?  You could put wheels on the bottom of a drawer and use it for under-the-bed storage, for example.

If you’ve got a project or two that you’ve completed, please share it in the comments.   Thanks so much for stopping by.
(This post updated 3/22/2018)


Apartment Therapy – The book – A Review

Apartment Therapy: The Eight-Step Home Cure

Maxwell Gillingham-Ryan began his journey as an “apartment therapist” by helping a young film editor restyle his apartment after a painful break up with his girlfriend and she subsequently moved out.

Even though his apartment was very nice, he was miserable. The memories were painful and he hated it. He even moved his bed into the living room because he couldn’t bear to sleep in that room, anymore.

Gillingham-Ryan persuaded him to do a very deep cleaning, remove all of the personal effects and decor that she left behind and repaint the room and lighten it up.  It worked! He was ready to move on.

If you haven’t discovered Apartment Therapy, the blog, you’re in for a treat! It’s one of my favorite sites with a multitude of ideas for maximizing small spaces.

Well, Maxwell Gillingham-Ryan has written Apartment Therapy: The Eight-Step Home Cure, the book! If you’re frustrated with your home and can’t figure out why then this is the book for you.

He suggests looking at our rooms in a new light.  Are you ready to make healthy changes…clearing out everything that you don’t need or really love.  Look at the flow…is it comfortable and easily navigable? Can you feel the energy and movement in the room?

There is a questionnaire to help determine your own personal taste and to determine the physical, emotional and energy flow issues.

This is the basis for the eight-step home cure and I can tell you that once you start, you’ll be motivated and eager to reach Step 8.

  1. Week One: Creating your Vision
  2. Week Two: Clearing the Path
  3. Week Three: The Landing Strip
  4. Week Four: Retail Therapy
  5. Week Five: Getting into the Thick of It
  6. Week Six: Light Therapy
  7. Week Seven: Sacred Space
  8. Week Eight: Throwing a Party!
Tiny kitchen

Tiny Kitchen Makeover

Each guided step helps you work efficiently and affordably toward creating a more comfortable home of your dreams.

There are floor plans. There are examples of how to turn any small space into a functional and beautiful area.

You will learn how to declutter, first of all.  And then you’ll learn how to keep it from becoming cluttered ever again.

You’ll learn how to get a handle on paperwork.  There’s a list that shows how long to keep paperwork; for example, tax returns should be kept permanently. Bank statements should be kept for seven years, etc.  It’s a handy list to have for reference on many levels.

You’ll learn how to work with color…and why some spaces should have cool colors and others should have warm tones. You’ll learn how to apply the 80/20 color rule.

If you need to call in professional help (and unless you’re an experienced DIYer, you probably will) you’ll learn how to choose the right professional.

You’ll learn how to choose lighting – what’s the best lighting for each area of your home and why.

This little reference book is invaluable for a multitude of reasons.  Check it out…you’ll thank me!  Be sure to let me know what your favorite lesson is and how it helped you solve a dilemma!

(Updated 4/20/2018)

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Bar Carts are Still Hot!

Call me old fashioned bar cartBar Carts – A New Idea for Home Decor

We’ve discussed the importance of multi-purpose furnishings for small spaces. There are multitudes of multi-purpose pieces but one of the hottest is the bar cart!

By the way, do you love this Call Me Old Fashioned Wall Art?  I sure do! I ordered one for myself and it’s a real conversation starter. To be honest, an Old Fashioned is my favorite cocktail.

This print is:

  • Professionally printed on 100lb paper
  • Paper is acid-free with smooth finish
  • Archival inks guaranteed to be fade-resistant for 100 years

Bar carts/serving carts are perfect for almost every room in your home.

Obviously, the bar cart is meant to be..well, a bar cart! It will look lovely in your dining or living area but, more important, it’s excellent storage…especially if cupboard space is lacking. Plus it’s super easy to move wherever the party is happening.

Use one in the kitchen as a place to store baskets and serving pieces. The top can double as a countertop for rolling out cookie dough or whipping up a batch of muffins.

In a bathrooom as a spot for fluffy towels and bath salts and a bouquet of flowers! Pretty as can be and useful, too.

In a bedroom as a night stand! In an office area for whatever you need to have within reach.

Here are two of my favorites:

This wood and metal bar cart from Tribecca Home is rustic but elegant and easily fits in a contemporary or traditional room.

The top tray is removable and it has two locking wheels.   Plus, it boasts these custom features:

1. Poplar wood and black sand metal materials

2. Wine glass inserts, tray top, bottom storage, metal hardware pulls, two (2) locking wheels

3. Tray top depth: 2.86 inches Bottom storage depth: 5.86 inches

 


This next beauty is a sophisticated tea server that could double as an end table beside a chair. Pull it out to use as a cocktail serving cart.

It’s crafted from select solid woods with cherry veneers and finished with antique brass galleries at each end.

I must tell you that Amazon has dozens and dozens of Bar Carts for whatever your particular style is…contemporary, traditional, funky, rustic…you name it and I promise you’ll find just what you’re looking for to round out the decor in your small space.

If you’re an Amazon Prime Member, shipping is fast and free!

Here’s a classy contemporary cart . It’s chrome with black tempered glass shelves.  Since it’s on wheels (most of them are) it could easily be wheeled onto your deck or patio for an outdoor party or barbecue.

There are a multitude of ways to use a bar cart…as a night stand, a coffee station, a plant stand, etc.

You must check out these great photos and ideas in this Apartment Therapy post:  7 Other Ways to Use a Bar Cart

You’ll find an idea that’ll work for you that you haven’t even thought of!

Do you have a bar cart or serving cart that you’re using for it’s traditional purpose or in a unique way? I’d love to see photos.

Please do comment and if you have a question, I’ll be happy to give you my best answer!

(Edited 4/21/2018)

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A Small Bungalow Perfectly Restored

A Small California Bungalow

Here’s a fabulous article from Houzz about a homeowner in Long Beach, California who truly made the most of his small 1919 bungalow.  Gotta hand it to those clever Californians…they do know how to make the most of what they’ve got!

You can view the slideshow by using the arrows on the pictures or click on THIS LINK and it’ll open a new page.

 

I especially love the kitchen…nothing is attached to the walls so the room can be reconfigured.  It also makes arranging the elements of the kitchen easier if the space is small.

Additionally, that front porch on this small bungalow is a bonus room…in California, especially, where the weather is mild all year round. But front porches are bonus extra living spaces no matter where they are.

It’s a perfect example of remodeling on a budget, too.  Had he not purchased a high end refrigerator, the entire remodel came to about $2000.

Repurposing items, shopping on Craigslist or at resale shops or flea markets is a smart move even if your budget is larger.

Multi-purpose furniture like storage ottomans that could be used as coffee tables or footstools are particularly popular.

Another good multipurpose piece is a daybed with a trundle. I have a daybed with trundle in my guest room I chose two good mattresses for it so it’s extremely comfortable and yet it doesn’t take up my entire room. I have room for a comfortable chair and good lighting.

These are smart choices regardless of the budget or whether you’re shopping at traditional retail stores or via resale shops, etc.

Since bungalows are typically smaller homes these tips for furnishing them are good to know. The end results are a unique spaces celebrating your own personal style!

The History of Bungalows

A Bangla House in India

Did you know that bungalows originated in India? They did!  The word bungalow is derived from the Indian word Bangla which was a small dwelling with a thatched roof.

During the British Colonial occupation of India, the style was adapted with wide covered porches or verandas, and an open concept that allowed for much air circulation in the hot and dusty climate.

Bungalow Characteristics

So in the bungalows were built in America between about 1900 and 1935. They’re still popular, today.

The first bungalows were built in California where the climate was conducive to the open floor plan style for good airflow and wide verandas for relaxing.

Typical characteristics of this style include:

  • Single story to 1-1/2 stories
  • Wide front porches
  • Dormer Windows (usually in the front)
  • Low-pitched gable roofs
  • Natural materials such as stone and cedar and sometimes stucco.
  • Open interiors with built-in bookcases and sideboards
  • Also called Craftsman or Arts & Crafts style

If you’re renovating a bungalow or if you would love to own one, you’ll find more than 300 photos, excellent examples and good advice in the book, Bungalow Style. It’s just one example on a whole host of books celebrating this classic home architecture.

I don’t own a bungalow but I’m continually tweaking my own small space. It’s what I do for fun!

Do you have a remodel-on-a-budget that you’d like to share?

I’d love your comments and encourage you to post photos, too!

Thanks for stopping by and stay tuned!

(Updated 4/21/2018)

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