Let’s face it, if you have kids, you have a lot of STUFF! I have four kids, and they are all active in various activities and like to do different things. The variety of their outdoor toys include:Balls (basketballs, footballs, baseballs, soccer balls etc.)Accessories such as mitts, bats and shin guardsBikes (and unicycles!) with helmetsRoller blades and necessary padsSkate boardsSkis (for us older people) and Snow boards (the younger generation)Footwear (winter and ski boots, snow shoes)Camping equipment (tents, coolers, propane stoves and lanterns etc.)Fishing poles and equipmentUnlike indoor toys, most of these items are not usually kept in my kids’ rooms, but in the garage for easy access. My struggle is to constantly keep things organized so that we can find what is needed, when we need it, and quickly. I have quite a few home built shelves in my garage as well as many handy hooks, but when I found out that a friend was moving into a brand new house and could organize her garage from scratch, I was jealous!
I love to organize, and garage organizers are one of the greatest things invented since sliced bread. Lucky me, she asked for my advice, and I was happy to oblige. Besides all of their toys, they also had a lot of gardening tools and her husband likes to do wood working, so there were a lot of items to organize, important if they also wanted to put their cars in the garage.
My first recommendation in garage organizers was to get a full storage system to go along one wall. The full system included various full length cupboards, as well as lower cupboards with a work space and then cupboards up above, just like in a kitchen. This type of system was perfect for her husbands tools because the wall above the work space comes with a slat or peg wall where many of the often used tools can be hanged for quick and easy access. These types of garage organizers are systems that come in all sorts of configurations and materials, so anybody can find something that will work for them.
Along the second wall is where I suggested putting the garage organizers that I am most excited about. These are the systems with a lot of customization options, and can easily be rearranged at any time to fit evolving needs. These are the garage organizers that include all the handy shelves, baskets and variety of hooks. There are different systems out there that all use the same basic structure. First, there are slat type pieces that attach to your garage wall. These can usually be purchased in different widths and lengths. You can create an entire wall of slats, or just one slat that is 4′ long, it just depends on your needs and available space.
Once you have the wall attachments in place, that is where the fun begins! You can get hanging baskets (wire or mesh) for all of your balls, there are shelves with hooks attached to the bottom for hanging bikes or other items, and then there are all sorts of different sized and shaped hooks for hanging most anything onto the wall. From these hooks you can hang ladders, hoses, garden tools, dollies, extension cords, leaf blowers, skis and snow boards (you can rest them on two hooks), fishing poles and the list goes on. You can also find garage organizers with special shelves designed for different items, such as a shoe rack or a cleaning caddy. Some systems have fold away work stations, which is great for gardening supplies and potting plants. Some system even have small bins for storing really small items (nuts and bolts). The best thing is that these garage organizers (hooks, shelves, baskets etc.) can be moved around and arranged on the slat wall any way necessary.
Yes, I am going to have a lot of fun organizing my friends garage. With all of the different garage organizers available today, and the great flexibility of the different systems, I will be able to find a place for everything that she needs to store, and she will be able to access it easily. Best of all, everything will have its own place, so the garage will STAY organized.