Simply Done: Custom Wall of Garage Shelving

Mar 16

While writing this post I realized a good topic to share soon will be “why shelving matters and how it can impact your space?”. You’ll get a pretty good idea after reading this, but the shelving you choose does matter. It not only impacts (or hinders) the amount of space that’s possible, but a bad shelving choice can keep you from easily accessing your stuff.

Let’s go right to the before in this garage…

Custom Garage Shelving by Simply Organized

There’s a mix of shelving here, which I frequently see in the homes I work in. Nothing wrong with that! Families choose shelving based on their budget, purchase something because they found it on sale or are gifted stuff from friends and family. Any kind of storage in the garage is a great idea and will give you more space because you’re going vertical. The problem occurs, however, when a couple issues collide. First would be that the shelves aren’t easily adjustable. Both of the racks shown above are adjustable, but in order to make those changes everything needs to come off the shelf and tools are required. The gray shelving on the right looks like this…

Custom Garage Shelving by Simply Organized

It’s known as commercial grade bolt-less shelving. Meaning, there are no bolts or screws needed to assemble, but you do need a hammer. To adjust a shelf you’ll need that hammer again…and everything should come off the shelves for safety. Not to mention, you should wear gloves while doing this because I cut my palms pretty well by simply grabbing the steel pieces during disassembly…they aren’t completely smooth to the touch. To give you a better idea, here’s a close-up of how these are assembled at the corner posts…

Custom Garage Shelving by Simply Organized

When shelf adjustments are needed, you have to remove all 4 steel pieces that hold up the particle board decking. As you can imagine, this is a big pain. Especially if you aren’t the type with much patience.

The other shelving in this space is Metro from Container Store…

This option is an upgrade in the looks dept, but again – to make adjustments you’ll need to remove your items and use a mallet to gently tap the shelves out of their current position.

Another issue with this semi-fixed type (let’s call it what it is – ha!) of shelving is that you’re constantly in search of bins or containment to fit on those shelves. Most people who hire me aren’t patient enough or simply have the time to remove everything from the shelving to make adjustments … so instead they run around finding bins that fit. I don’t blame them! But it also sets them up for having bins that don’t necessarily contain everything. Meaning some stuff ends up in bins while other items are left open on the shelf. Garages get dirty. If it can be contained, especially holiday decor, it should be. And categorized too. Case and point, there’s 7 different kinds of bins and boxes here along with many items just sitting on the shelves…

Custom Garage Shelving by Simply Organized

In regards to safety, how exactly are we supposed to access that top row of bins stacked on top of one another? #yikes…

Custom Garage Shelving by Simply Organized

Finally, free-standing shelving doesn’t use the entire wall space. It’s a garage! – Use that vertical space! It doesn’t have to be pretty out here (although, I like that for the folks who hire me – and for myself!), it just needs to contain and maximize…so be sure to use all of the wall space. Top to bottom.

That’s exactly what I did here!…

Custom Garage Shelving by Simply Organized

Not only did I use a wall-mount system, but it goes ceiling to floor AND is easily adjustable – no tools required.

With the shelves empty, we listed them for sale on a local closed Facebook garage sale group…

Custom Garage Shelving by Simply Organized

If you’re on Facebook or a member of a Moms Club, you can find a closed garage sale group that’s perfect for listing items like this! These were listed and sold within 2 days. Done deal and good bye!

Custom Garage Shelving by Simply Organized

This wall is much longer than 20′, but given the work station set up at the far end and keeping in mind what I was containing in this space, that’s the measurement I went with = yes, 20 feet of shelving. And remember, we’re going to the ceiling so we also had 100″ of height! I’m drooling again, aren’t I?

The shelving is Elfa from The Container Store. I went with this because I know it very well and it was 30% off. Previously, I’ve shared tips on installing this system. It’s really very simple! You can see some of those tips here. One day, I’ll make a video for you guys! #oneday

Custom Garage Shelving by Simply Organized

Installing Elfa is as easy as hanging the top track, then the standards…

Custom Garage Shelving by Simply Organized

Custom Garage Shelving by Simply Organized

Then the shelf brackets…

Custom Garage Shelving by Simply Organized

Then the shelving…

Custom Garage Shelving by Simply Organized

Since we’re using bins, I went with ventilated shelving. It’s the least expensive option – no need for shelf liner.

Custom Garage Shelving by Simply Organized

That’s 5 rows of 20′ shelving…plus the floor space! What an impact! I shared this sneak peek image on Instagram…

Custom Garage Shelving by Simply Organized

But will be back again to share better quality after images and we’ll talk bins!

By the way, this wall doesn’t only contain holiday decor. There’s camping gear, a few sentimental items, winter gear, touch-up paint, work tools, household items that don’t need to live inside the house and more. There are many goals in mind beyond this wall. There’s a wall opposite this one that needs an overhaul too in order to accommodate kid’s sporting items and overflow kitchen stuff – think costco purchases. By adding 20′ of shelving to this side of the garage, many items from the other side were able to relocate. And you can see we have plenty of room to spare here.

Is organizing your garage on the spring cleaning list? It should be! I’ll be back soon with bin chatter – get excited…ha!

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comments +

  1. Elisabeth says:

    My only question/critique would be: where are the labels?? Is that something your client did not want? Otherwise, LOVE it 🙂

    • Samantha says:

      Hi Elisabeth,

      Yes, sometimes people want the labels – sometimes not. With clear bins and color-coded lids it’s pretty easy to know what’s inside each. My favorite is when 2 different clients have pulled out painter’s tape and used it as a label. I love how smart and savvy they are! No cost labels!!! Ha!


  2. Robyn says:

    My heart is a flutter…I’m in love!! What a great contrast to show future clients the difference in the 2 concepts…..well done! 🙂

  3. Cait says:

    How much did all this cost? It looks beautiful. But then I’ve never seen such a clean garage to begin with. Then almost all of the bins are replaced as well. I purchased clear bins last year for my Christmas stuff (attic) and they were not cheap either.

    • Samantha says:

      Hi Cait!

      Thank you! It is beautiful, but most importantly – it works! There’s a spot for everything and moving forward, should a bin need to be purchased, we know exactly what type will fit. Also, the bins that were replaced were so many years old that several broke or cracked upon just removing them from the old shelving. They had been moved all over the country and were disintegrating. Which was why we invested in some new bins…and kept some that looked salvageable. The bin investment was around $150. The entire shelving system was $900 and that was 30% off…and installed by me to save even more. It’s definitely worth the wait to hold off until this system is on sale. They sometimes offer the sale again later in the year, but it’s generally at 25% off. Not too bad…but 30% off is great!

      Also, something to think about…those 4 bolt-less shelves cost nearly as much as this new shelving. I looked up pricing for us to list them for sale and was shocked how much they cost! So this is another key point to keep in mind – when you are investing in something, gotta do it right from the first go round…if you can!

      Hope that helps!

  4. Janice says:

    May I ask what is the weight limit per section? We have 30-50 lb. items to store (bags of sunflower seeds -40 lb bags being placed 2 together played out,etc.)

  5. Can you please specify what section if “Elfa brand from The Container Store these are? I can not seem to find them anywhere on their website? Any information is helpful!!

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