The garage is generally the last part of the home to get a little love in terms of storage and organization. That’s a real shame since your garage represents a lot of space–space that can become a clutter magnet, or with a little planning, can become a storage solution for your home. Imagine turning your garage into a place where you can actually do projects, or even host a party!
Courtney Fernman, who writes the blog A Thoughtful Place, decided to take action to turn her garage into an orderly, attractive and useful part of the house. The results of her garage makeover are impressive. She even included a brilliant artistic touch by adding her own Greek key detailing to the countertop.
Here’s how she did it.
The side of our garage has been a constant source of frustration. Like most people, we have too much stuff and not enough places to put it. With two small children, a handy husband, and a blog, I have a lot more toys, tools, and craft supplies than will fit in our garage. I had always swooned over spaces that had cabinets but never dreamed that they would actually afford us so much more storage.
The real problem was that I lacked a place to work on my blog and decorating projects. I did not have a dedicated home office or basement and really needed to carve out a spot that could be just for me.
While I am relegated to the garage for my projects, I don’t really mind as it’s so lovely now.
And if you are wondering why the heck there is a TV in here, that’s because we use the garage as our workout space. My boxing bag is directly next to the cabinets. We also open up the garage as an extension of our home when we host parties as there is always a football game on in our home.
So all in all, we really use this space, and now I am no longer embarrassed about how it looks!
While we had used a white armoire that my hubby made for storage, the rest of the space was useless. The desk from my college days was always piled with junk, and the only thing under the desk were chairs we use on the soccer field. Those are now in our hanging storage.
My husband and I cleared the space and added two ClosetMaid 24” Freestanding base cabinets and a ClosetMaid 36” 2-Door Raised Panel Storage Cabinet. That made a world of difference making the garage more orderly and attractive.
But because this is a place where I work on projects, I really wanted to give it some personality, so I decorated the countertop with a Greek key motif.
It’s super simple to do. I have created step-by-step instructions for you so that you can carry out this detail in one of your spaces. The overall dimensions of my top are 48” by 19½ “, but that does not have to match to use my tutorial. If it is anywhere in that ball park, you can use the same measurements or adjust slightly if you have a smaller desktop.
Materials for DIY Greek key trim
The most important step is measuring for the four squares that anchor the Greek key trim. Measure 2” in from each edge and place a dot with a pencil on all four corners of the desk. Then use the 3” square pieces of paper, and place them on each dot you marked. That is as complicated as it gets.
Now, we just place electrical tape around those squares. Luckily, you get to learn from my trial and error. After attempting just to tape around each square as a guide, I quickly realized each piece of tape can be cut to 4½” and you are set. Use the paper square as a guide, but you can pick it up and discard it as soon as you lay your first piece of electrical tape.
HINT: Be very gentle in laying the tape down. This tape can stretch, and you do not want that. It is very easy to work with. Just lay it down nice and easy and the press down.
Before you know it, there are four squares all ready to go. Now it’s just a matter of connecting them all.
Cut four 1″ strips of tape and four 4½” strips of tape and place them according to the design below, along the short sides of your space. Measure the final gap before cutting the last piece of tape to finish your side design. Repeat this process on both sides of your design.
To make the final connection, you can measure and cut a strip that length or you can gently roll the tape out as I did to connect from one side to the other. If you do not have a straight eye, you may want to draw a straight line with a pencil as a guide.
Now these standard cabinets don’t look so standard! They are such a pretty addition to our garage and I feel like I have my own glorious work space.
The drawers are packed with fun craft supplies. The outlet makes it easy for me to whip out my glue gun and get to work.
And yes, a few faux blooms never hurt anyone. It’s the garage, my friends! For me, it’s just the spot of color that makes me smile.
And a quick coat of gold spray paint on a glass jar (once bruschetta!) makes a nice holder for the pens I use regularly. The journal is where I write down measurements or ideas of the project I am working on.
This is definitely my new happy place.
The biggest point I want to make is that you could replicate this look anywhere. These cabinets are fantastic and I would use them indoors as well. A basement could shine with these, or even a craft room or closet.
It took us one weekend to clear out the space, build the cabinets, and install them. The directions were easy to follow.
Our only hiccup was that there was a 14” concrete band around the perimeter of our garage. My husband needed to cut that out of the cabinets before installing them so that they would sit flush against the wall. While it was an extra step, it was well worth it and it did not greatly effect our storage space.
Helpful Hint: It is crucial to use your level throughout the installation process. Our garage floor is at a slant and we needed to account for that when attaching the cabinets to the wall.
So thankful to The Home Depot for these beautiful new cabinets. I am astounded at how much they hold and feel so lucky to have a nice bright and cheery spot to work on my blog projects.
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