Thursday, September 1, 2016

New garage shelving

There is nothing I love better than a good purging and organization. And when you have a hoarder husband and 2 small kids, this is a thing that has to happen on the regular.

We've generally had enough shelving in the garage. But as the kids have grown, they've introduced more and more large wheeled items that require a lot more floor space, making the standing shelves a huge space hog.

Additionally, we had all this empty wall space going to waste along the wall next to the door. Here's what it looked like after I tidied last spring.


Which, wonderful! But you know it doesn't always look like that. And they added 2 bikes to the mix in the interim, plus a wagon, plus a bike trailer/stroller....

So! Off to the Container Store website to put in the garage measurements for a space solution. I ended up having to call and talk to a human being, though. He took all the info, designed the space. I ended up calling back to make a few adjustments for better flow, since a lot of what he'd put in place didn't really make sense from a functional standpoint.

When reviewing it, we decided to install it a section at a time, starting with the most immediate need - the massive row of shelves to the right of the kitchen door. I went to the store on Saturday, made a few more adjustments there, ordered it and went back to pick up on Monday.

However, I missed when reviewing the design that the person had put in the wrong measurements. So when I got home on Monday afternoon with the material I realized that the track was WAAAAAAAAAY too long. By, like, a foot and a half.

So I had to haul the track back on Tuesday afternoon to be re-cut and re-design the space, which resulted in some returns (swap three 4' shelves for 3' shelves, return a vertical support). Then pick it up Wednesday afternoon/evening. Which was annoying, because I had taken half days Monday and Tuesday to get this installed. But c'est la vie. Wednesday I got the longest track up and the smaller track marked. And then I spent Thursday afternoon putting up the final top track, installing all the uprights and putting in the shelving.

The result:
Yesssssssssss my precious. The best thing is this leaves the floor space for the 3 scooters, the tricycle, the batting tees, etc. without sacrificing shelving space. The lowest shelves and floor space are now all kid toys. Other toys go on the shelves in various buckets. I ended up using a lot of the bins we already had on hand, rather than buying new ones. The one blue recycle bin on the shelf is all balls. The one on the floor is larger items like bats, tennis rackets, etc. We've talked about adding some of the Elfa utility panels to the space where you can see the vertical supports extend down to hang things like the tennis rackets, maybe garden tools, etc. but we'll see.

The first long series of shelves is gardening supplies and (for now) seasonal items like our hammock, the sled, etc. The second shelf from the top is all hazardous items like wasp killer, fertilizers, automotive supplies. Stuff that needs to stay out of little hands.

The very top will be for items we technically need to keep but rarely ever use, like lawn mower bags, sump pump emergency venting hose, chicken wire, etc.

The second best thing is that I could move all of the items that had been on the large wire shelving unit off it to the new Wall O' Shelves. That completely free this space up for more child vehicle parking. Wagons and bikes are currently here. Eventually we'll mount the bikes on the opposite wall, but this will serve for now. The wire shelving was moved into the basement for more storage down there.
Finally, it frees up some space over here as well. It doesn't look it at the moment because bikes, stroller, wheelbarrow, tupperware bin of soccer gear the husband needs to donate....  The plan is to move the items on the plywood panel over the workbench and window to the top shelves along the wall. The bikes will be mounted for seasonal storage on folding racks along the left wall. There's no point in buying them now, though, since it's September and they'll go up on the ceiling hooks for overwinter storage. The kids are going to grow out of that bike trailer in a year or so. 
But it's a vast improvement. We'll live with this for the next 6 months and see how it functions. We have the full plan done but I think we'll probably want to make a few changes just based on discussions yesterday, like instead of more shelving to the left of the door adding an outdoor mudroom for snow pants and boots (so small children don't go traipsing thru my kitchen with their wet, snowy, muddy gear).

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