The hubby’s $8 Valentines Day gift…Before & After Tool Storage

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Hubby and I have this “no money gift” policy right now…Maybe after a new roof, a water heater blow up, new fences, asbestos abatement…The “no money gift” policy starts to make sense. I don’t know if this happens after marriage or buying a house, but apparently we’re not the only couple who adopt this policy.

However that does not mean we don’t give each other sweet and thoughtful gifts, or lack in romantic gestures. Hub’s birthday, Christmas and Valentines gift request was ALL organized storage and cabinets.(Every one of them in the entire house!) He and I are both “closet” organization nerds (we love the idea of organization, but not always the doing). His official slogan is “no stuff”, but after two homes, even he realized stuff can accumulate. Hence the inspiration for my next project; including before & after shots, and tool organization tips!

Disclaimer and wife confession…Yes items were bought for this project… $8 for random hooks at Target on a gift card

[RECAP] You’ve seen the Before and the Progress Pics of the husband’s previous Man Cave present…

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(See more on the Man Cave Make-over by clicking on the pics!)

However what you haven’t seen is what we have hidden behind the cabinets…(cue “Jaws” music)

First the ugly before shot…

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(For a supposed DIY couple, we’re pretty ashamed of this photo)

You’d think we’d show more respect for the tools, or at least have more of them. However this is pretty much it. We’ve made it through two homes with barely middle-of-the-line grade, and/or hand me down tools. The only few “quality” tools came as Christmas gifts. (I.e. our dads staging an intervention)

So with Super Bowl and Valentines day approaching I needed to quickly fix this mess…First paint over the really awful original paint with left over cabinet/workbench paint (custom match Glidden denim blue).

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organize tool cabinet diy (47)As you can see two coats became necessary… ( A powder puff teal and blue tool cabinet would not meet man cave criteria)

Next I actually left the original hooks, they did serve a good purpose…The tools just needed to be reconfigured…

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TIP #1 – Take advantage of Magnets! We already had an Ikea magnetic strip, normally used for knives. This became a great idea for storing our eclectic mix of screw drivers and  tool randomness.

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TIP #2- Take advantage of storage cases the tools come in. We just unrolled, hooked and even nailed the current storage cases to the pegboard doors.

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Lastly we still had random odds and ends of power tools that had found their way into the tool cabinet from the cardboard box of power tools (No I did not take a picture of the card board box of tools… There are just some “before” pictures I am beyond ashamed of)…So using a left over metal shelf from our dog proof garden box project, I installed it in another cabinet. Then started the process of reorganizing the power tools. (BONUS tool cabinet!)

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TIP #3- Random hooks sold as hanging bike or yard tool hooks are also fabulous for storing power tools. This entire pack at Target cost about $8 and look at all the great ways to use them. I even found a dowel and with the hooks it became instant paint/duct tape dispenser.

TIP #4- Take a picture of the “after” organization, then place in the cabinet. This will remind husband, you and everyone else how it is supposed to look. (Taking the “thinking” out of reorganizing)



We hope these tips help you on your goals for an organized garage and tools. Happy Sunday everyone!