Monday, June 9, 2008

Vacation Tackles... organizing the garage!!

Tackle It Tuesday Meme
BEFORE SHOTS of a friend's garage

This garage was really equipped with all the things an organizer loves--storage space!!  This anonymous family had new cupboards put in the kitchen a few years ago, and these older ones were in the garage.  Yeah!!  Now, there are a few organizing "errors" going on here.  Can you identify them?  
1.  Bike hanging in front of useable storage space.  
2.  Boxes/ containers in front of cupboard doors
3. overcrowded countertops
4. unlike things grouped en masse

Once I started this project, I realized what the primary use of this space was supposed to be.  Can you guess by the piles started?  It's a potting shed!  We have an indoor gardening haven.  What a great idea.  Here are the piles that I came up with:
1. Unrelated to the garage: Are these items supposed to be here?
a. possible donations
b. possibly didn't make it into the house
2. Gardening liquids
a. growing things (like Miracle gro)
b. killing things ( like rodent killer)
3. Pots
a. terra cotta
b. big, med, small
c. oddly shaped
4. vases
5. fragile
6. frogs/ foam
7. fillers and stuffers
8. decorative
9.  Christmas
10.  potting soil and trowels/diggers

Essentially, I wanted this space to be "fun again" for my "client" (whom I forced my service on.. but that's another mental illness I have--to be discussed later).  
Here's how it all turned out:  TA DA!!
Because I was on vacation and wasn't planning an organizing "fix", I didn't bring a labeler or a laminator etc. etc., so I just wrote on tape for my labels.  All the cabinets are clear of things in front of them. (Whew!)
It's hard to appreciate really what is going on here.  But I tried to make it such that my client could decide to repot something for the season and go to the first cupboard and select a pot or a vase.  The pots and vases are arranged by size which are labeled on the bottom of each section.

If a vase is selected, she can pick from marbles, rocks, wood chips, shells or sphagnum moss.  She can also pick from foam, ties, or frogs in the same area.
The potting soil sits in a pot right on the counter (no bending) as well as the trowels and diggers in the pot.  The box on the right of it is a container with a ball of twine in it.  I cut a little hole in the top for easy retrieval.  The miracle grow and all of that sort of stuff is in the cupboard directly above this.  
Even though this project was a "blast", I'm also intrigued by how much you can learn about something just by organizing it.   But this gardening hobby... this was fascinating.  How important is something?  How many of "them" are there? "They" must be important then.  Or "they" have taken over the important.  So then you ask the client something like this, "You seem to have a lot of these plastic pots...are they special?"  They will say something like "Oh yes!" or "Wow.. I never realized how many I have!"  So, you learn!  

I'm hoping this will bring the joy of gardening back into the life of someone I love very much!  To my anonymous client, thanks!  

To find more Tackle it Tuesdays, go here: 5 Minutes for MOM


Anonymous said...

WOW! I wish my garage looked like yours! I am just getting the 5min4mom post ready now that has a bit to do with the garage and it's nothing as awesome as this!

GOOD going GIRL!!!

Anonymous said...

That must have taken a LONG time! It looks great!

Jena Webber said...

I started at 8:30 a.m. and was done around 3:00.

Anonymous said...

Hey, any time you're in GR, feel free to organize my entire house!!

Laura said...

That looked like a lot of fun!!

Anonymous said...

Wow! That is amazing! So, is the way to do this to first take everything out, then group things that go together, then put it all back so everything you need for a specific project is near each other?