Garage Cleaning and Organization – Finished!

We just finished with our Garage Reorganization Project. I so happy it is complete. Here’s our journey which started more than a week ago…

Unorganized Garage 1

I used a system I learned at AGC (where I used to work) called “5S”. It includes Sorting, Straightening, Shining, Standardizing and Sustaining.

Starting with Sorting… I sorted in three piles…Keep, Throw Away, Sell in Garage Sale.

Garage Organization First Step

Straightening and Shining….Before putting things back (straightening), I cleaned windows, swept spider webs and cleaned the refrigerator inside and out. Lots of elbow grease and sweat (shining).

Clean Frig

Standardizing. I made a place for everything. This involved a trip to Sam’s Club where I got all sorts of cool boxes, sprayed them with chalkboard paint and then marked them.

Boxes are Marked

Labeled all the canning jar boxes…

Jars Labeled

Here’s the shelves on the first phase of the project…

Garage Reorg Day 2

There were some things (picture below) that didn’t belong on shelves…those misfits are propped up beside the shelves. In a garage, anything that is on the floor is twice as dirty as anything that is off the ground. Yuck.

Stuff in Corner

Mike had to help me, and I really appreciate everything he did. He installed a unit to hold the mop, broom, etc. Then, he made me two pegboard stations to hang things on. Here he is and I know his knee is bothering him, so I really appreciate his help. Thanks buddy!!

Mike Helping

Here’s one of the pegboards in its “virgin” state..before I put anything on it.

Pegboard empty with broom hanger

And here it is again. Everything now has a place. That is the sustaining part.

Peg Board 1

Here’s the other pegboard. I’m going to focus on recycling on this side of the garage and will post about that in the future. Mike's side of garage

Last, I love the chalkboard Mike and I made which I’ve already posted about. When he leaves, I always remind him about things and now the garage chalkboard will be a visual reminder, too!! Nagging!! I’ll be adding some more useful things on it. I think I started the garage reorganization project just so I could have this chalkboard!!

Yardstock and Chalkboard 2

And I like the yardsticks that surround the chalkboard. See what they say..”Clean Up.” And that’s what we did!!

Yardstock CloseUp

Thank you for reading RiverCliff Cottage.


My Laundry Room Is Happy!

As I’ve mentioned before, I have a close friend who describes my decorating style as cheerful. She’s right. I like color and a certain brightness to the rooms I live in. They make me happy. Did I show you my very unhappy laundry room? It’s very, very sad.

I’ve finished updating the laundry room today.  Here’s one of my “after” pictures and then details of what I did during this process of changing the look and feel of this little room that I enter daily.

I knew that red and black would change the way the celery colored paint would look, and I went looking for an inexpensive piece of fabric for a window treatment. I found a black, white and red fabric at Hobby Lobby for $9 per yard. I had a 40% off coupon so that brought it down to $5.60 per yard. I bought 1 and 1/2 yards.

Here’s the fabric..

We had created a  storage problem because we stored tons of lightbulbs in the cabinets above the washer and dryer. It was Little Debbie to the rescue again as Mike picked up empty Little Debbie boxes at Sam’s Club and I painted them, hot glued ribbon on them and used wide-mouth canning lids and scrapbook paper for labels. With the ribbon, I have about $2 in each box.  What a deal! I have attractive storage for the bulbs and easy-to-access storage for laundry and cleaning supplies.  I couldn’t be happier.

I used four boxes.

I decided to keep trash bags out in the open where they are easy to find. When we have company, which is fairly often, sometimes they’ll ask “where do you keep the trash bags?” Now, I can just point them to the laundry room!

Living 17 miles from a grocery store,  I’ve learned that white vinegar can handle just about any cleaning job and it’s a good thing to have for laundry, too.   I’m keeping it on hand in one of my canning jars.  Same with the clothespins.

My husband made this small distressed red shelf.  Love it.  I also keep clothespins in it. I like a plant in every room–that inclues the laundry room.

I had these red plates which I’d bought many years ago.  I’ve never used them.   When I was thinking about the laundry room and the need to have some brightness in there, they came to mind.


I had to wait for several days to put the plates up. I use an adhesive backed plate hanger for hanging plates, and I haven’t found any place in Bristol that carries them. I ordered these from Amazon on Thursday and they arrived today (Wednesday). I was so excited when the mail arrived with them…you’d think someone mailed me gold!

The ribbon, fabric, spray paint and spraypaint were all that I purchased. I like using what I have on hand, as it inspires me to think “outside the box” (or in this case…in the box). My sweet mother, Vivan Barker, always said that “necessity is the mother of invention.” Mother was right!

Thank you for reading RiverCliff Cottage. If you care to comment, I’d love to read your thoughts!


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