A few weeks ago I came across this post on Pinterest on how to organize your house one day at a time from www.mysimplerlife.com. The idea was simple– each day of the year have one very small task to complete for a decluttered home. I decided to give it a try. I don’t necessarily follow her calendar in order (especially since it’s from 2012), but one task a day is my goal.
After hanging all the bottles, I organized everything remaining from least used to most used. The least used items were placed towards the back (large soap containers to refill small container, compost filters, odd cleaning items, etc.) After rummaging through the rest of my organizing items, I was able to use a basket and a glass jar container for my dish soap.
You will end up with a square like below. (Use can use a L-square ruler to make sure it is square.)
Using an nail gun (or just a hammer and nails) reinforce the box in each corner.
You now have a finished wall cubby (or two in my case!)
Now we need to sand and paint it to look professional 🙂 Most likely, you will have some sort of a little gap where the boards meet. Use some wood fill to fill this gap.
Let it dry overnight.
Then sand it with 60 grit, 100 grit, and then 200 grit.
After two coats and a day of drying you should have two wall cubbies that look like this:
Install the hinges and you will have a frame that looks like this:
Next, on the cubbies mark where the hinges of the fake painting will meet cubbie. Make sure you give them enough room to close and line up on the cubby straight.
Now to attach the magnetic catches. These will make sure the frame on the front will stay closed.
Measure two inches to the inside of the cubbies.
You should end up with some finished Hidden Storage Wall Cubbies that look like this.
add a little wall decoration to the bathroom at the same time!
The time has finally arrived, the reveal of the Garage Sale Idea Trofast Shelf.
I attached it to the open toy box and filled it with the bins.
It seems that I am always in need of more toy storage in our house. It’s not like my child has a lot of toys, he doesn’t, but some of the ones he has are too big to fit into his little toy box we are currently using. For the last year, we have been using the toy box I refinished for his fire truck room (Garage Sale Redo: The Toy Box). I knew that once his fire truck room came to an end we would have to move this toy box out of the living room and into his room.
My original idea was to build him a large desk, with two storage cubes under the desk that could roll out. I worked for hours on this plan with Google Sketch.
I excitedly cut the wood for this project (just the desk part, not the cubes) but made a promise to myself I couldn’t work on it until I finished the fire truck room. Months later, the desk pieces were cut but the desk was un-built and I started to lose heart in the project. Two 2’x2′ cubes for storage didn’t seem like enough storage room for me. In addition, at IKEA one day I found a table for $14 that was the perfect height for little chairs my sister Luci had given me, so the whole desk idea went out the window.
Browsing online I found this great open toy box idea from The Land of Nod
I love the large open storage concept and thought it was great for the larger toys! After look around on the internet I ran across plans for this on Ana-White.com. I love her website and thought this would be PERFECT!! I loved the open storage on the bottom and the shelves on the top.
My goal was set– build the bottom storage unit and wait on the top bookshelves for a later date. Now I decided to not be wasteful and use my cuts I had already made for the original desk I was going to build him, which ended up being one 4’x8′ sheet of MDF. The storage cube I built is 4-feet long, 2 -feet tall, and 2-feet deep. The top is 15-inches, perfectly cut to be the right size for me to put some of my extra baskets on it. The front board on my box is 9″ tall, making it only 9″ deep. I fretted about whether this would be deep enough, but it turns out it is!
I unfortunately didn’t take any picture while building this project, I was just too excited to get it finished! I sort of winged this job too. Ana-White‘s website wouldn’t load the plans, so I just made the desk up like how I thought it should be. Really any dimensions you want with the shelf would work. My dimensions below are estimates as you have to account for the thickness of your MDF.
In a nutshell, with no pictures, here’s the basics of how I made this shelf.
1. I attached the bottom and back 4’x2′ cut MDF to each other to make an L-shape. I used a counter sinking bit and used 2″ all purpose screws.
2. Attached the side walls and center wall boards to the back and the bottom board, again using a counter sinking bit and used 2″ all purpose screws.
3. I didn’t want screw holes to show on the front and the top, so I glued these boards on and used my nail gun to nail them to the existing boards.
4. I filled all the nail holes with wood fill and plugs for the countersinked holes.
4. Lastly, I knew this thing would be heavy! Super heavy, I flipped it over (with the help of my strong husband) and attached wheels to the bottom.
5. I thought the wheels would look tacky sticking out, so I nailed trim around the box with the nail gun and reinforced the trim with some 1″x2″ scrap boards I had.
6. I painted it and here is the finished product!
Well, that’s the end of another project finished! Just a few more to go off my list of things to do (Countdown of Summer Projects):
1. Fire truck room
2. Under deck sandbox/playground
3. Organizing the shop
4. Little girl’s nursery
This is a little embarrassing, but my garage is a mess! A complete mess! Everyday I go out there for some sort of tool or another and I feel like I am hunting in one of those barns that you see on American Pickers. Really the mess is our own fault. We have shelves already installed, but since we have moved in we have never actually organized the place.
I removed the wallpaper and painted the walls. I have been on this quest to remodel on the cheapest budget possible, so the beige color is leftover paint from two rooms combined. The green wall is venetian plaster left over from one of the bathrooms we remodeled. My husband helped me resurface all the cupboards and we switched out the handles to match the rest of the house.
Here are the results of all of our hard work: And a side by side comparison:
And some more photos of the before and after:
I decided to keep my TJ Maxx hooks that I paid only a $1.50 for, but spray painted them antique brass to match the new fixtures on the cupboards.
As for the ugly light fixtures, well they remain. I haven’t exactly decided what to do with them yet. I had some suggestions to spray paint them, which I really might end up doing that. However, it’s just so cold outside I will wait till the warmer weather to do that. The hooks were hard enough for me to spray paint!
Now for the organization part. I didn’t want to go out and buy new baskets for the room so I just hunted around the house and rearranged some things in other closets to find the baskets I needed. They are mis-matched but they do the job.
It really is amazing what you can find around the house that can help you just to become a little more organized.
My favorite part of this whole thing is the junk drawers below:
In my upstairs closet I had the two small drawers for our extra cold medicines and such. I just swapped out the large white one I had in the laundry room previously for these two small drawers and they really helped. Most of the stuff in the cupboards was just random junk that we had laying around. It’s really nice to have all the little glue bottles, batteries, and miscellaneous items all tucked away in these neatly organized drawers.
Well that’s it! Another room finished. To many of you out there, this room may not look totally organized, but it works for us. I would love to have cute wicker baskets in all of the shelves, but I really didn’t want to go out and spend the money on buying them. Who knows, maybe some day I will be walking through a store and find some for a good bargain. Till then, it’s nice to have another room done in this house and only four more major rooms to go!
Well, many of you know that we started yet another project of remodeling one of our bathrooms. Right across the hallway is the laundry room, and I thought it would be a great time to just get both rooms remodeled. The laundry room though, has a lot more work to do than the bathroom.
A few posts back I talked about organizing the kitchen and I highlighted some of the items I found that I thought would greatly aid in keeping my kitchen not only clean but arranged neatly.
With the kitchen practically finished, I have successfully organized most of the cupboards in one way or another. I found though, when I actually went to purchase all the items some of them the cost really outweighed the benefit. As I have said before, I am a cheap person and just thought there had be another way then spending lots of money on storage containers. I did purchase some of the items on my previous list, because I could not find substitutes that I liked. However with a little creativity I was able to use some everyday items as storage containers. This not only helped in the organization but it also helped the wallet.
I will first start out with our spice cabinet. My husband and I love to cook, so we have about a million spices. I purchased this little “stadium seating” shelf organizers from the Container Store for $4.99 each and they work great for viewing all the names on the labeled spice jars.
I have found that if you buy spices in the bags from the foreign food section you tend to get a whole lot more spice for a lot less of a price (that should be their tag-line!) We had about 15 bags of spices. Before they were all thrown into the drawer below and you would have to dig through it to find the one you needed. Buying little jars for all of them seemed like way too much work (and money), so searching around the house I found these jars that we have been saving for my hubby to organize his random nails/screws in the garage. We buy this local salsa and they sell it in these pretty nice canning jars. I stole a few of the large and small jars from him, slapped on a homemade label, and filled them with our most frequent used of the bagged spices. Genius!
In the drawer below, we have more spices! I know just crazy! The original spice rack we had came with these white jars. I HATE things on my counters, so I threw the rack away and just kept the jars. These jars were just a little too tight to fit standing up in the cupboard, but I purchase this slanted organizer and you can now see all the labels. As for the black jars, they were the perfect height to see all the labels as you open the drawer.
Also, who could forget this cute little rack I talked about a few blogs back. It’s great for hanging aprons, pot holders, and dish towels on and just so handy being within a couple feet from the stove and cook-top.
In the kitchen we have this desk that is built into the corner. Before it stood as a dumping ground for all types of junk. You name it, it was there: 20 rolls of 20 different kinds of tape, post it notes my hubby received as freebies at work, a million writing tools, and lots of coins. I had these two shoebox like containers that I used to hide all the roles of tape and post it notes in. Now when we need more tape, we can just look there for the next roll. I am sure we have a lifetime supply. All the writing utensils were put in this container I had used at one point in a bathroom somewhere. It was just sitting empty. The coins were placed in the old time money bag (the orange bag) and I know the bag doesn’t look the best, but it’s sturdy and will hold a ton of change. The stationary set serves as our fast grab section. I fill it with post-it pads, scratch paper, one roll of tape, pens, scissors, and paperclips. It’s easy to refill and quick access without digging through the boxes, not to mention a totally cute pattern!
Ahhh the big purchase. How I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this thing! I never knew I could love a trash can so much, but this little slider has made our life so simple! The unit features a trash and recycling pullouts cans that fit great in the cupboard under the cook-top. This was so expensive though! It was a total of $95.85 after shipping (shipping was $25.90 YIKES!) It has relieved us from remembering to put the garbage can back under the cupboard and the handy recycling bin has been very nice too!
The ugly organization: I was going to buy this fancy, dancy pullout slide for the items under the sink but I just decided not to yet. Who knows I might change my mind. I call this the ugly organization, because it just doesn’t look nice but it serves its function.
I purchased some cheap 3M removable hooks from Target and placed them on the inside of the door. It’s nice to have a place for the towels to hang dry out of view. Also, while at Target, I found this paper towel dispenser for about $4. It too has that removable adhesive on it. I stuck it to the bottom of our sink and it has stuck there quite nice. I like the paper towel holder, my husband hates it. He keeps pulling off too many at a time and gets mad at it. This might have to go in the future. The other nice little addition that we have is this small compost bucket from World Market. It was just $14.99 and saves us from having to walk out to the garden with our veggie scraps. I am not kidding when I say that there is no smell that comes out of it. It has this charcoal filter in the top and holds it all in. I have not dumped the bucket in….wait for it….about 4 weeks! It’s totally nasty on the inside, but I figure that it will just compost the more.
Of course, I wrote a whole blog (see blog here) on this pot rack already. We really wanted to have a normal pan rack displayed in our kitchen, but the problem was the only spot available would be above the sink and that would block the view of our backyard. We installed the pot rack just left to the cook-top and we are just so darn proud of our little pot rack.
In the drawers, I purchased these put together drawer organizers from Target. They server their purpose to group like things into each little section.
And the big one…the pantry. I do not have the luxury of a walk in pantry. I would love to have one, but the place it would have gone the previous owners decided to put another half bath there. (We have two half baths on the main floor with really no reason to have two.) They were not big on cooking I guess. So we are stuck with this really large pantry in the kitchen.
I know, it is full to the brim! I really do have a food hoarding problem. Well, anyway I will break down the organization. Starting at the top. I have this space above the cupboards that serves no purpose. I would much rather have my cupboards go to the ceiling. I have worked with a local wine store here in town and they were kind enough to give me a couple wine crates. I think they look just super cute above the pantry. I use them to hold random items that we need in the kitchen, but I just don’t use a lot.
Below that cupboard we have the “dead space” area. I called it dead space because all it stored before were items that we never used! I purchase this large expand-shelf from the Container Store for $14.99 and I use it for my large, odd shaped items that won’t fit in the built in can holders on the doors. Behind the shelf I have hidden more infrequently used kitchen items.
On the other side, in the “dead space” area I purchased this Gravity-Feed Can Rack from Amazon.com ($39.79) and there is a reason why it four and half stars out of five. It is awesome! This guy was pretty tough to assemble (which I think would be why it’s not a five stars) but it is so heavy duty! There are always certain canned foods that I like to keep in hand at all time and I use this rack to hold them all. They just roll forward when I grab an item out of it. Also, this organizer saves the space in the built-ins on the doors for the other canned food items that I only keep one or two on hand.
In the rest of the pantry I just used some storage containers and baskets (most of which I had) to keep the place a little more arranged. I tried to label the containers as needed but some of them were see-thru so it was not necessary. The baskets I just filled with random items that matched the shelf contents. For example, on the baking shelf (flour, sugar, baking powder) I filled the basket with chocolate chips, sprinkles, and baking nuts.
Well, that’s it for organizing my kitchen. It does not look the prettiest in some places, but it serves its function well and that is really all that matters. I wanted to have the ability to keep the place put together and clean. All of these little additions have really made it easier for me to accomplish that goal.
About a month ago I wrote a post about organizing my kitchen and adding a pan rack was one of my ideas.
We really wanted to have a normal pan rack displayed in our kitchen, but the problem was the only spot available would be above the sink and that would block the view of our backyard. Browsing around on the internet I came across this in-cupboard hanging pan rack from a cupboard company (Ayr Cabinetry). I LOVED IT!
We have a cupboard just left to the cook-top that really doesn’t get used much, so I thought this would be a perfect addition to the kitchen and really aid us in the storage of our pans.I contacted the company and they told me they just purchased a pan rack (that normally would hang from your ceiling) from amazon and mounted in the cupboard, but they didn’t know how the carpenter had mounted it in the cupboard. After about a month of going back and forth I nailed down our plan of attack. Here is my little How To:
What you’ll need for this project:
36″ inch Dual Track Natural Wood Ceiling Rack
(4) L-Brackets about 1.5″
Stain (if you want it to match your cupboards)
8 screws (about 1/2″ to 3/4″)
I purchased this pan rack from overstock for $37.74 (pic is hyper-linked). You really do not need to purchase this rack, you can just use some 1″x2″ board and buy some pan hooks. I found the pan hooks, were about $6 each (6 times $6= $36, and I could get all the parts for just $1.74 more if I bought the rack)…so I thought purchasing this rack was the better route to go.
With the remainder of the board (the cut off part), cut a rectangle that is about 1.25″ long. This will be the “gap” between the two boards so that your hooks can slide back and forth.
Clamp the boards together. It should be the long boards the outsides and the small 1.25″ boards in the middle on the ends. Drill holes in the boards equivalent to the size of the metal screws that came with the kit. It should look like the picture below.
Attach the boards together with the metal screws that came with the kit.
At this point I chose to stain the rack so that it matched our cupboards. This is entirely up to you.
Next, measure where you would like your rack to hang. Make sure that you put the rack high enough for your tallest pan. Also, you need to make sure that the rack is in the center of the cupboard. Start out with marking just one side.
Attach two of the L-brackets in the area you have marked off as center one side of the cupboard. Place your wooden pieces on the L-brackets to line up the other side. Using your level, mark where to place the two remaining L-Brackets on the other side. Making this level is very important.
Once your L-Brackets are in place you can attach the wooden rack. Drill holes in the rack where you would like to place your screws. This should prevent the wood from splitting. Make sure to avoid hitting the metal screws that hold the rack together. We only used the outer holes on the L-Brackets. Use the remaining four screws to attach the rack to the L-Brackets.
Insert the metal hooks in the pan rack and then adjust your shelf (if you have one) to the right height above the rack. We had just enough space for the shelf to be used to hold pan lids.
And wallah we are finished! The rack is in place and couldn’t look nicer! It’s just so handy to have the pans close at hand!
We are so proud of our little pot rack. It’s just another nice way to keep your kitchen organized and minimize the clutter!