Organizing the Garage

I’m not 100% sure how all this came about but last week we decided to take on the garage. As luck would have it we found some used cabinets on craigslist and by the weekend we were hard at work.

*Check out Part 2 and Part 3 to see how it all ended up.

Earlier last week Chris and I were talking about what we wanted to do with our garage on the “workshop” side.

As a reference here is what the garage looked like at the time. Not exactly horrible but not easy to use or well organized.

Garge Cabinets 3

I took some measurements and came up with a sketch that could incorporate what we were looking for in storage and work space.

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Then I did some quick calculations to see about what it would cost to create all the cabinets and workbench that we wanted. We came up with at least $675 and that still didn’t include a number of things we might end up needing.

So Chris did what he did best and searched Craigslist to see if there was anything he could find cheaper. He found an ad for 12 wooden faced cabinets and 4 glass fronted cabinets. We knew that we needed something sturdy and we were hoping for something solid wood. We were surprised to find that the cabinets actually were solid wood boxes so we ended up buying all 12 of the wooden faced cabinets and 2 of the glass ones since they were better suited for table top height.

I even drew up a new sketch before we bought them to see if they would fit in the garage like we needed and wanted.

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We couldn’t fit all the cabinets in the truck at once so we had to pick them up in two trips.

Garge Cabinets 1

We filled up the truck bed and backseat a second time to bring the other half of the cabinets home .

Garge Cabinets 2

Here’s the whole set hanging out in the garage. We know that buying these saved us a lot of money and not to mention time since these were already built.

Garge Cabinets 4

Since we knew that these cabinets wouldn’t work for everything we needed we decided to paint the cabinets a light grey to help them match anything we made. We were also hoping that it would make them look more professional and like something that belong in a garage.

So the first step was Chris pulled off the hardware on the doors and I puttied the holes. We didn’t plan on using the hardware again since they were a weird hook and eye style latches. We also knew that the screw locations wouldn’t work for any other hardware we might decide to use.

After some debating I finally convinced Chris to pull all the doors off of the cabinets so we could sand and paint them laying down.

Then we got to sanding.

Garge Cabinets 6

It took a little over an hour to sand the doors and the faces of the boxes that we needed to paint. We didn’t sand every surface since we didn’t plan on painting the insides or any of the sides that will be hidden.

Garge Cabinets 7

After brushing off the sawdust and taking a damp cloth to them we were ready to paint! We had yet another debate about whether or not to prime first. I did a test swatch of the paint on the side of one cabinet and we finally decided to just go ahead and prime first. We ended up using the Kilz 2 primer.

We ended up using two coats of primer. They still weren’t completely covered but we were more than ready to move onto our first coat of paint.

Garge Cabinets 10

I’ve been looking at different colors of grey paints to use inside the house so we ended up picking Driftwood Grey from the Martha Stewart line.

Since the grey paint had to dry for four hours before a second coat we weren’t able to do another coat until the next day.

Garge Cabinets 10

Look there’s even some evidence that Chris helped paint.

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After the paint had dried enough and we were able to move some of the things that were on the 2×4’s Chris started working on bases for the cabinets. Since the cabinets were made to stack they don’t really have a bottom. We knew when we bought them that we would need to build a frame to stack the cabinets on that would allow for a kick plate and so the doors wouldn’t rub on the ground.

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Chris cut the 2×4’s and screwed them together so that they would fit under 3 sets of cabinets. Once they were together we primed and painted the sides that would be visible.

Once the bases were dry enough Chris installed the first stack of cabinets using small L shaped brackets. Once the cabinet was stable Chris put the doors back on.

You might notice in the photo below that we also had to build the bases a little skinnier than the cabinets since our garage has a concrete lip along the wall.

Garge Cabinets 13

That’s all we were able to get done over the weekend but don’t you worry the rest of the week was full of hard work (mostly by Chris). After we get a little more done I’ll post about how it’s going.

Anyone else taking on some organizing projects in the garage?

*Check out Part 2 and Part 3 to see how it all ended up. 

One thought on “Organizing the Garage

  1. What a headache!! I hate organizing period. It doesn’t matter if it is the garage or somewhere inside the house. There are many options out there now for getting the garage organized quite easily. I am so dang lazy that doing most of the building of the shelves and what not is just too much. That is why I go online and just buy what I need. Such a great thing the internet. I am amazed though at all the work you put into this. Great job. It looks really good and is far better than anything else I would have done.

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