An Organized Garage = Happy DIYers (+ a Giveaway!)

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Our plans for the garage were a bit of a roller coaster. Initially, we thought we’d hang some hooks, get our bicycles off the floor and call it a day. But then we remembered, ha, this is us!, and considering we seemingly love to add an element of extra work to most things (busted), we thought, but how can we make it a space we really, really enjoy?

From there, our plans escalated – a new concrete pad! painting all the plywood! brighter lights and an automatic door! – but after realizing our roof needed repair, we had to reel it back in. All said and done (the concrete pad became a ‘someday’ wish), we think we hit a happy balance for these two DIYers. It’s so, so much better, and I’m pretty sure I even called it cute! when we called it complete. I don’t have the heart to show the true before photos in this post (they were just too terrible), but this’ll do to show you how things stood with a good cleaning before really diving in. Here’s where we sort-of started:

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After addressing that leaky roof, we added a pegboard wall and painted everything a clean grayish white, Zen Pebble by Valspar. There were a handful of smaller to-dos from there – installing a side door, painting exterior trim and cabinets, waterproofing with caulk and hanging curtains(!) – and then we took to Ace Hardware to knock out our punch list. A fun Friday night for the Vargos is a trip to the hardware store (you think I’m kidding?), and wanting to finish the garage once and for all, we spent a good hour loading up on all the things we’d need to complete the job!

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We loaded our cart with everything from heavy duty hangers to paper towel holders to storage bins. Every last item we needed was checked off our shopping list, that is, minus a handful of pegboard hooks and cubbies that were passed down to us by a friendly reader (Margot, you’re awesome!).

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Our DIY island, above, has been living in the garage as extra work space since we began our kitchen renovation, and we added a 2×12 board to stash our miter saw and any future tools. Below, I could not resist this little dinosaur spotted in the checkout line at Ace! I’m guessing that no one is really surprised by that? Dinos 4-ever.

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When we bought our home two summers ago, a friend of Scott’s gave us a few knick knacks from his father’s garage. One of those items is this nifty blue odds-n-ends organizer, which came in surprisingly handy on a few occasions already! Most of the bins are labeled with masking tape and thick marker, although some of the empties hold a surprise or two.

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To the right of the main workbench, we had tidied up our bikes, remaining bins and lawn tools, but it was still a constant fight to pull out anything we needed:

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Now, look at all that glorious floor space! There’s a hook for everything, and for the first time in ever, our bikes are being stored on actual racks! After settling on all the placement, we joked that it felt like our own tiny storefront. I’d like that weed whacker, please and thank you.

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We took a day earlier this summer to create wood storage, seen below to the left of the workbench. Game changer! This was before we painted, but after a big clean-up:

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Ooh, cleanliness. Those two bins beneath the wood piles are full of smaller scraps, and just as we did in our indoor workshop, we stashed our extra long ladder high out of the way:

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A bonus to having exposed framework in the garage? You can stash odds and ends between the studs! We used bungee cords and eye hooks in a few places to tuck things away and keep things nice and neat.

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Our Garage To-Do List is all crossed off except for garage door repair/replacement (and sadly, the garage floor will have to wait). But we are working on it, having already collected a couple of quotes. Soon enough, we should be able to open and close that door with the touch of a button, and, you know, park a car in here!

Just as Ace Hardware helped us whip this outdoor room into shape, they want to do the same for one of you, and so together with the Ace crew, we’ll be giving away a $100 Ace Hardware gift card to one lucky reader!  The giveaway runs through Thursday, September 3rd at 5pm CST; simply enter using the Rafflecopter widget below. The winner will be announced within this post by Thursday evening. Good luck and happy entering!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

We’re excited to be collaborating with Ace Hardware as a part of their Ace Blogger Panel. Ace has provided us with compensation and the materials necessary to complete this project (hey, thanks, Ace!), and all opinions are our own.

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  • Lisa Brown - August 31, 2015 - 6:50 AM

    All kinds of things on my mind today; hope your day, and week, is fantastic :)ReplyCancel

  • Ashley@Biggerthanthethreeofus - August 31, 2015 - 7:09 AM

    Wow, totally inspiring. I really love the bungee cord ideas and that little organizer with screws. You have me putting our garage on the to-do list.

    On my mind today: Another cup of coffee. It’s early!ReplyCancel

  • Stephanie - August 31, 2015 - 7:59 AM

    What a beautiful garage. I am working slowing to organize and create a small shed that will hopefully hold all my lovely tools and supplies!ReplyCancel

  • Laura - August 31, 2015 - 8:01 AM

    Why are before and afters so satisfying?! I love seeing the grey/white garage – it looks beautiful! :)ReplyCancel

  • Meghan - August 31, 2015 - 8:05 AM

    it looks great!ReplyCancel

  • Jessie Aucoin - August 31, 2015 - 8:11 AM

    Thanks for the giveaway!!ReplyCancel

  • Nate - August 31, 2015 - 8:21 AM

    In to win! Love all the work yall have done!ReplyCancel

  • Justynn @ Creative Life Antics - August 31, 2015 - 8:30 AM

    I’m weirdly excited over all these garage storage ideas you guys are posting. We close on our first house with a full garage in less than two weeks and I’m so EXCITED about all the organizing and storage and workshop builds coming up!

    Thanks for the ideas again!!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 31, 2015 - 8:51 AM

      Oh, awesome! Congrats to you! So exciting!ReplyCancel

  • Harper - August 31, 2015 - 8:31 AM

    Is the concrete pad in worse shape than it looks? Seems okay in pictures but I know they can be deceiving!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 31, 2015 - 8:50 AM

      It’s pretty rough in some areas, and not so bad in others. The worst parts of the pad are mostly at the garage entrance (where the car enters), although there are some crumbling chunks along the edges… it will likely need to be repaired/replaced at some point, but it’s not an emergency, thank goodness!ReplyCancel

  • Jenn C - August 31, 2015 - 8:41 AM

    I love the pegboard and the use of bungee cords!ReplyCancel

  • Amy c - August 31, 2015 - 8:50 AM

    Looks great. We need to something similar to our garage workshop, especially the pegboard.ReplyCancel

  • Laura Ck - August 31, 2015 - 8:54 AM

    This looks amazing!ReplyCancel

  • Mary - August 31, 2015 - 8:56 AM

    Anything on my mind? The only thing on my mind today is how I wish I would go into labor! I have 2 weeks until my due date but I wish the baby would come now!ReplyCancel

  • Anna Kristina - August 31, 2015 - 8:56 AM

    This looks amazing! I absolutely love your color choices (pinned it as soon as you first posted the paint job), and it is fun to see it all finished!!ReplyCancel

  • karen - August 31, 2015 - 8:58 AM

    I would love to have an organized garage/work bench. Would love to try the “Magic Art of Tidying” trick with my tools. I am sure I have so many screwdrivers stashed in the garage, basement, drawers, etc.!ReplyCancel

  • cassie @ primitive & proper - August 31, 2015 - 8:59 AM

    WOW! this is nothing short of AMAZING. the colors, the white with the blue cabinets and wood tops…. LOVE! so organized and so fresh!ReplyCancel

  • Elissa - August 31, 2015 - 9:06 AM

    I love how the sawhorses fit so neatly into the studs of the garage – makes my heart happy! We are constantly battling a need for storage of tools and this makes everything looks so neat and tidy. Do you guys feel it’s pretty easy for you to keep everything this organized, or will it all disintegrate into chaos over time?ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 31, 2015 - 9:54 AM

      Our hope is that it stays this way! As we hung and stashed everything, we did so with the intention that it would be EASIER to keep it clean. A place for everything and everything in its place.ReplyCancel

  • Nicole - August 31, 2015 - 9:11 AM

    Seeing fabulous garage before and afters is always so motivating! Maybe, just maybe, we’ll get our bums in gear and whip our garage into shape next weekend!ReplyCancel

  • Christy G. - August 31, 2015 - 9:15 AM

    I love the white. So clean and fresh!!ReplyCancel

  • christine - August 31, 2015 - 9:28 AM

    I’m afraid to step foot in our shed, so this is seriously impressive!ReplyCancel

  • Rhonda G - August 31, 2015 - 9:34 AM

    This looks sooo great! My garage is such a mess. I am ashamed of it.ReplyCancel

  • Esha - August 31, 2015 - 9:45 AM

    it looks great!ReplyCancel

  • Elaine - August 31, 2015 - 9:48 AM

    All of your organization and painting add to the excitement of closing in a few short weeks!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 31, 2015 - 9:54 AM

      Hooray! Congrats to you!!ReplyCancel

  • Kari - August 31, 2015 - 9:52 AM

    Everything you do inspires me – but the garage stuff? Above and beyond! I am completely in awe of your garage organization magic.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 31, 2015 - 9:55 AM

      Let’s just say we were REALLY motivated. After 2 winters of complete chaos and shivering at the thought of working in the garage, we knew it had to change!ReplyCancel

  • Patti - August 31, 2015 - 9:53 AM

    Your garage looks great! Congrats on the hard work paying off.ReplyCancel

  • Alex - August 31, 2015 - 9:57 AM

    omg, i would just sit and stare at the beauty of your hard work!!ReplyCancel

  • Rebecca G. - August 31, 2015 - 9:58 AM

    Building a new house means constant trips to the hardware store for us!ReplyCancel

  • Trilby C. - August 31, 2015 - 10:00 AM

    Right now, I’m a bit jealous of your exposed studs in the garage. We did a HUGE garage cleaning job yesterday here, and I struggle with places to hang (hide?) things in our completely drywalled garage. Though I do have a few ideas of how to get the yard tools (weed whacker, hedge trimmer, etc) off the floor now, thanks to your pictures!!ReplyCancel

  • Emily - August 31, 2015 - 10:02 AM

    Our garage is definitely a work in progress! We hung some of our stuff (our bikes have been hanging since the apartment days) and now we just need to organize the rest of it. Slow and steady seems to be our renovation pace.ReplyCancel

  • Haley W - August 31, 2015 - 10:05 AM

    Inspired by this!ReplyCancel

  • Leslie - August 31, 2015 - 10:05 AM

    Motivated to conquer our detached garage! Thank you for all of the inspiration!ReplyCancel

  • Molly W - August 31, 2015 - 10:10 AM

    Looks great!ReplyCancel

  • Karen - August 31, 2015 - 10:16 AM

    I love how the garage has come along. It is so bright. Great job.ReplyCancel

  • Missy G. - August 31, 2015 - 10:25 AM

    Looks so clean and organized! I thinking I should send this post to the hubby to light a fire under his tush to do the same!ReplyCancel

  • Kelly Lee - August 31, 2015 - 10:38 AM

    Looks soo neat and organized! I need to do the same for my garage!ReplyCancel

  • Nathan - August 31, 2015 - 10:55 AM

    Organizing our garage as been on the list for some time, but haven’t wanted to spend the money or time doing it, since few people see it. Now, I think we need to get on it!ReplyCancel

  • Carley M - August 31, 2015 - 10:55 AM

    That is one nifty garage! Love it :)ReplyCancel

  • Staci - August 31, 2015 - 10:56 AM

    OMG, serious garage envy over here!! Might have to do some work on our tiny carport storage space… Don’t you miss condo life? ;-)ReplyCancel

  • Bridget P. - August 31, 2015 - 11:05 AM

    Nice job on the garage!ReplyCancel

  • Missy - August 31, 2015 - 11:07 AM

    Just looking at the few pictures, I can see where your floor has settled in certain spots. Have you gotten a quote for mud jacking the floor? It’s typically a lot cheaper than tearing out and re pouring the whole floor. The garage looks 1000% better than the before! Makes me want to spend the weekend getting my garage cleaned out and organized myself! LOVE the curtain idea.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 31, 2015 - 11:15 AM

      Thanks for the tip, Missy! We hadn’t looked into that yet.ReplyCancel

  • Megan - August 31, 2015 - 11:09 AM

    The garage looks awesome!!ReplyCancel

  • Breanna Veth - August 31, 2015 - 11:18 AM

    Love the garage it looks fantastic! I was looking for the tutorial on the supplies you used to frame your 100 year-old nails and couldn’t find it.. Do you know where I could find that link?ReplyCancel

  • Sharon Flasche - August 31, 2015 - 11:21 AM

    Our garage is scary! Hope to use some of your organizing tips, Thank you.ReplyCancel

  • Jennifer S - August 31, 2015 - 11:48 AM

    Beautiful garage! What a great inspiration.ReplyCancel

  • Bethany Wellman - August 31, 2015 - 11:51 AM

    You guys did such a fantastic job, you should be so proud! Perfect you added a little dinosaur touch too :)ReplyCancel

  • Suzanne - August 31, 2015 - 11:58 AM

    This is seriously motivating!ReplyCancel

  • Jordan Troublefield - August 31, 2015 - 12:47 PM

    I’m full of garage envy- that ceiling is too cool!!! Love love loveReplyCancel

  • Andrea - August 31, 2015 - 12:56 PM

    I have a seriously tiny storage closet where I’m trying to organize my power tools, lawn tools, seasonal decor, and bike. I think some peg board and a real bike rack would definitely help!ReplyCancel

  • Amy Lynn - August 31, 2015 - 1:06 PM

    I reckon your garage is brighter and more organized than our household, haha. Looks great guys! :)ReplyCancel

  • Anna - August 31, 2015 - 1:07 PM

    Our garage needs some serious organization. Yours looks great!ReplyCancel

  • Josh | The Kentucky Gent - August 31, 2015 - 2:00 PM

    That garage is filling up quite nicely! Especially that peg board wall.

    Josh | The Kentucky Gent
    http://thekentuckygent.comReplyCancel

  • Rosie - August 31, 2015 - 2:05 PM

    Ace Hardware is the only hardware store I love going to. The ppl who work there are knowledgeable and helpful and the merchandise is wonderful!ReplyCancel

  • Jenn - August 31, 2015 - 2:23 PM

    We’ve spent quite a few Friday Date Nights wandering the aisles of our local Lowe’s, so I don’t doubt you there!

    The garage looks great :)ReplyCancel

  • Alexis - August 31, 2015 - 2:24 PM

    One of the very first things we did when we moved into our place was to add motors to the garage doors, it makes such a difference!

    Lots of inspiration here for my workshop that I am slowly trying to organise and make functional. I can’t wait for the day when I don’t have to scratch through a drawer of assorted crap just to find a screwdriver!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - September 1, 2015 - 1:36 PM

      We felt the same way. Can’t believe that day is here! At least the organizing is sort of fun, right?!ReplyCancel

  • kathyg - August 31, 2015 - 2:31 PM

    Love the bungee cord idea!ReplyCancel

  • Ursula Ellis - August 31, 2015 - 2:31 PM

    If mine could have just a quarter of the organization you’ve managed here, I’d be ecstatic. What a great job. And thanks for the chance to enter the give-away.ReplyCancel

  • alex - August 31, 2015 - 2:52 PM

    having serious garage envy!ReplyCancel

  • Kristin - August 31, 2015 - 3:01 PM

    I would love to win this gift card…I think I would use it to buy a paint sprayer. We have bunches of painting projects lined up and it would make life so much easier :)ReplyCancel

  • Kari - August 31, 2015 - 3:21 PM

    Well…I’m super excited because my wonderful and giving mother just bought us some new dining room furniture. I’m 46 years old and this will be the first time in my adult life that I’ve actually had dining room furiture. SQUEEEE!ReplyCancel

  • Wendy - August 31, 2015 - 3:39 PM

    It looks so great and makes me not want to open the door to our overstuffed and unorganized garage.ReplyCancel

  • Corey @ TinySidekick - August 31, 2015 - 4:14 PM

    This looks so amazing. I love the idea of putting leftover wood up and horizontal to get it out of the way. That is one of the things I’ve been wanting to figure out and this is a great idea! Thanks for the inspiration!ReplyCancel

  • Mary Hall - August 31, 2015 - 4:54 PM

    Wow, that looks awesome! Great job. It must be so nice to have a neatly organized garage…I can dream…ReplyCancel

  • Trude - August 31, 2015 - 5:20 PM

    It all came together so perfectly! It must make working out there so much less of a chore. :)ReplyCancel

  • shaunie - August 31, 2015 - 6:06 PM

    So many things to do. Would love to repaint and redecorate the the living room.ReplyCancel

  • Danielle - August 31, 2015 - 7:11 PM

    Wow — your garage is looking seriously good! This make me want to tackle the storage area in our basement.ReplyCancel

  • Ashley C - August 31, 2015 - 8:11 PM

    We started planning our patio for next year so this would help us get a jump start on it!

    demureprincess7(at)gmail(dot)comReplyCancel

  • Susan Christy - August 31, 2015 - 8:33 PM

    Looking at the paint colors makes me want to grab a brush and redo every room in my house!ReplyCancel

  • Kristin - August 31, 2015 - 8:50 PM

    Swooning over the organization! Can’t wait to copy your wood storage method!ReplyCancel

  • Moxie - August 31, 2015 - 9:44 PM

    Ah! I wish we had a garage. It’s really come together. I’m waiting for it to not be ridic hot so I can get to work on our shed.ReplyCancel

  • AnnMarie - August 31, 2015 - 10:32 PM

    Do you actually park in your garage now?ReplyCancel

    • Kim - September 1, 2015 - 8:11 AM

      We just started doing it this week! Magical!ReplyCancel

  • Rachel T. - August 31, 2015 - 11:27 PM

    Everything has a place — so neat!ReplyCancel

  • Lauren - August 31, 2015 - 11:43 PM

    I’ve never seen a prettier, more organized garage! I need to get one of those bike racks.ReplyCancel

  • Anna V - September 1, 2015 - 1:45 AM

    Great tips! Thanks for the giveaway opportunity!ReplyCancel

  • Haley - September 1, 2015 - 6:32 AM

    I’m pretty sure all garages need peg board walls and pretty wood storage! Your garage looks so good and I love the pop of blue.ReplyCancel

  • Katie - September 1, 2015 - 6:55 AM

    On my mind today, I hope the weeds I started killing on Sunday are actually dying otherwise I won’t be able to bring in the ??cyd of loam to reseed the front lawn this weekend.ReplyCancel

  • Sarah - September 1, 2015 - 7:46 AM

    I just moved into my first home on Sunday and I could not be more excited to have a garage since I never had one growing up but it needs soooooo much work. New siding and facia and a new garage door opener as well but most importantly ORGANIZATION. Loving this post!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - September 1, 2015 - 8:14 AM

      We feel you! Good luck, and remember to have fun with it!ReplyCancel

  • susan - September 1, 2015 - 7:55 AM

    bungee cords + eye hooks = fabulous!!ReplyCancel

  • Chelsea - September 1, 2015 - 8:27 AM

    Come do my garage! Yours looks great! I love all of the peg boards.ReplyCancel

  • Crystal - September 1, 2015 - 9:06 AM

    Love all the organization! Looks great!ReplyCancel

  • Elle - September 1, 2015 - 9:36 AM

    I was just at Ace Hardware last week and would love to win!ReplyCancel

  • Tanja - September 1, 2015 - 10:55 AM

    Thank you for inspiring me to get my garage in better shape. I need to get on this.ReplyCancel

  • Sarah B - September 1, 2015 - 11:00 AM

    Love the blue cabinets! Adds a nice touch to the garage.ReplyCancel

  • Beth G. - September 1, 2015 - 1:05 PM

    I need to paint my kitchen. I hope I win!ReplyCancel

  • Anna J - September 1, 2015 - 3:55 PM

    I love your love for organization! Makes my heart happy!ReplyCancel

  • KathleenC - September 1, 2015 - 6:47 PM

    Great giveaway! Thank you!ReplyCancel

  • DJ - September 1, 2015 - 8:20 PM

    This is so well organized! I wish our garage looked like this!ReplyCancel

  • spiffikins - September 1, 2015 - 9:59 PM

    I need one of those doodad holders! Garage looks great!ReplyCancel

  • Julia@Cukoo4Design - September 2, 2015 - 5:41 AM

    I’m so super jealous. If people would see my garage, I think they would stop reading my blog.ReplyCancel

  • Kayley - September 2, 2015 - 12:47 PM

    What’s on my mind today is that it’s almost lunch time and I’m wondering what I should eat. Oh, and work stuff, I suppose. :PReplyCancel

  • Charlene - September 2, 2015 - 12:59 PM

    I would love to get my garage organized! Unfortunately I just have piles of cardboard boxes everywhere.ReplyCancel

  • Jill - September 2, 2015 - 1:26 PM

    Fantastic! Very inspiring!!ReplyCancel

  • Kelly D - September 2, 2015 - 4:39 PM

    I would love to do a project like this in our garage.ReplyCancel

  • Amy - September 3, 2015 - 9:20 AM

    Love the idea of the curtains to hide away any mess!ReplyCancel

  • Jeanette C. - September 3, 2015 - 12:00 PM

    Would love to win to buy products to complete some unfinished projects in my house!ReplyCancel

  • Kat - September 3, 2015 - 12:03 PM

    I like a white painted garage for a lighter, brighter workspace, however it highlights every single spider web in my garage! EEEK!ReplyCancel

  • Kala - September 3, 2015 - 2:31 PM

    i love the feeling of an organized space!ReplyCancel

  • Bridgette - September 3, 2015 - 2:44 PM

    Good motivation! My garage is in need of some LOVE :)ReplyCancel

  • Emily I - September 3, 2015 - 3:11 PM

    love all the great storage options!ReplyCancel

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