transformation month

Before and After: A Pro Organizer Refreshes This Cluttered Garage into a Neat, Airy Space

published Sep 29, 2022
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Before: kids toys and bikes  on the garage floor

Garages can be so hard to maintain and get organized. They can become a catchall space and feel separated from the main home, so the need to keep them orderly and clean doesn’t arise as often. Whatever the case, it’s easy to let them go and it’s usually a huge project to get them back in order.

That’s why a family of four with typical garage clutter called in the professionals. Giselle Alonzo (@theartof_clutter), professional organizer and founder of The Art of Clutter, shares how her team organized this family’s garage in 12 hours with a budget of $400 for organizing products. 

Before the project, the garage “had become a storage space for everything that didn’t fit or belong in the house.” The impetus to get it under control was the fact that the family could no longer park their car inside. 

“They knew the space reached its max capacity when they couldn’t park a car in the garage,” Giselle explains. “Since they had limited storage in their kitchen, they had to make an outdoor pantry with bulk foods and small appliances that they rarely use. It was getting more and more difficult to access these items, as well as create a space for the kids to play and access their outdoor toys. Our clients also felt like it was becoming an eyesore and were embarrassed to open their garage.”

The way Giselle describes the process of getting this garage in order gives insight into how professional organizers tackle this challenging space. The process involved four steps: 

  1. Take everything out. It’s the best way to see everything you have. 
  2. Edit and sort. This is when you decide what to keep, what to toss, and what to donate. 
  3. Map it out. “During this step, we adjusted shelves, moved around furniture, and started placing organizing products. We created zones which are specific areas that hold a certain category,” says Giselle.
  4. Organize. This is when everything comes together. Items are placed in containers, the containers are put where they belong, and everything is labeled

Giselle especially appreciates the track system installed. “My favorite part is the Rubbermaid track system they installed under the shelves,” she shares. “During our consultation, one of their pain points was how the kids’ strollers and toys can take up a lot of floor space. I suggested a track system to bring anything that can hang off the floor. They loved the idea and had it installed before we started organizing! What’s great about this system is that it can grow with you with all its various hooks and attachments.”

Giselle also points out the impact of an organized space. “I loved how the garage became this bright, airy, and inviting space. It’s really amazing how organizing can really change the energy in a space.”

For anyone inspired to take on their garage, Giselle offers some pointers: “Have a game plan! Write down your goals for the space, then create a schedule and outline of how to tackle it. This will help you stay on track. If doing a complete weekend overhaul seems daunting, start with one cabinet or corner of the garage and work your way through.”

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This piece is part of Transformation Month, where we’re showing off amazing home makeovers, brilliant tiny tweaks, inspiring before & afters, and so much more. Head on over here to see it all!