12 Organizing Tips and Ideas for Your Garage Shelves

Yes, the organizing of the garage is STILL going on. It's taking me a lot longer than I thought, but I can almost see the finish line. :)

The open shelves were next in line. They were built following this tutorial right HERE. I love that they hold lots of stuff, gardening supplies, cans of spray paint, extra cleaning supplies for the home, electrical items, etc. it all fits in here.

This is the mess I had on these shelves right before starting to remove everything from them.
All the X's marks meant those items needed to go, many of them were the toys my kids no longer used.
The long rectangles were wasted space in between shelves.
There, on the lower shelf, Mr. RLC kept the classical music collection he found last year at the flea market. Gotta bring those inside for him to enjoy. :)

The first things to be removed from the very top shelf were the snow boards. You can check that part right HERE.

Then, those boards on the top shelf were also brought down, they were the perfect material to create little shelves to better utilize the space.

So, let me recap the steps I did to bring organization to these shelves with the following 

1- Get rid of everything you have on the shelves and divide it on three piles---> Stuff you want to keep on the shelves - Stuff that needs to go somewhere else in your home, and - Stuff that needs to be thrown away or donated.

2- Separate the stuff that needs to go back on the shelves.
Some of the categories I used were: CAR STUFF- GARDEN CHEMICALS - HOME - PAINT ... etc. Start bringing back those items and creating those areas on the shelves.

3- Try to utilize all the space you have by stacking things. Make sure that items on the lower shelf can be easily grabbed without disturbing whatever you store on top.
Those small shelves I built were the perfect solution to the wasted space.

4- Use a shelf liner to protect and maintain a clean surface.
A simple piece of cardboard was my solution to line the shelf holding the oils and sticky cans.

5- Before heading out to buy storage bins, take measurements. There are thousands of solutions out there. Bring the measuring tape with you so you can buy what you need.

6- Stackable clear-plastic bins with LIDS are the way to go, even if you don't label things you can clearly see what you have in each bin.

7- However, it's better to add tags, especially for those occasions when you send you husband or kids to grab something. ;)

8- Separate stuff inside the bins by using clear plastic bags.
In the container holding the electrical stuff I used a clear plastic bag to hold plugs and switches.

9- Yes, use clear plastic bags - Ziploc are even better.
As you can see in the above picture, I had no idea what was inside the bag on the left, I had to tear it -easier than undoing the knot to open it. The one on the right clearly shows its content.

10-- Don't store heavy items on the top shelves unless you have strong muscles!
My very top shelf was left half empty, and the items on it are not heavy and they're kind of standing (long items) to take advantage of the space above.

11- Keep stuff you use frequently on the lower shelves.
The kid's toys and the boxes full of small scrap pieces of wood are right at hand.

12-  Take advantage of stuff you already have to create more storage space.
I had no idea where to keep this pair of desk bases. By leaving them right there on the floor they gave me that extra little space to store what was left of rock salt and pieces of Sheetrock for patch-ups.

Well, this is how the shelves look now. There are still some empty spaces but I sure know they're gonna fill quickly.

I cannot leave you without the before and after. - SO much better!

I do hope that some of these tips and ideas can help you bring organization to your own garage. Any tips or ideas you want to pitch in, feel free to share them in the comments section below.


For more DIY Garage organization check these out:

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  1. WOW!!! What a beautiful after and thanks so much for all the tips. You have to be thrilled with your new garage storage!!~ Christina in FL

  2. These are fantastic tips! And boy do the before and after pics speak volumes! We so need to do this to our garage! Sigh. It's a production zone now though. I'm going to ignore it a little longer...

  3. I just know that this feels so good! My husband is an organizational guru and especially with his garage, so this would make him so happy!
    Looks great!

  4. Quiero que be gas a mi casa y me órdenes todo. , que maravilla , mi marido moriría de felicidad con las bicicletas colgadas asi

  5. Thank you for sharing this great tip on how to organize these overwhelming projects! We appreciate you joining us today too at TOHOT!

  6. What excellent use of all your linear space!! I'm so impressed!

  7. What a good feeling it must give you to be so organized in your garage! Good job Cristina!

  8. Looks great! We need to work onour garage too.

  9. Love your organization! Great job.

  10. My garage is a mess and I want to get it organized. Thanks for the advice about buying storage bins that fit the shelves. Another thing to do is to get custom made storage spaces to help you organize your stuff better.


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