Wednesday, April 6, 2011

9 Reader Space: Tami's Totally Organized Tools!

Some of you are lucky.  Lucky like you won the lottery lucky.  And you don't probably even know how lucky you are....

I am talking to all of you that live in a climate where it remains above the 40's for majority of the year, and you don't have 18 feet of snowfall in a given week..and you can leave your homes on a given day without putting on 5 shirts, tights, pants, 3 pairs of socks, boots, 2 pairs of mittens, a parka and a bomber hat, just to stay alive... I may or may not be exaggerating our snowfall....

Don't get me wrong, I am all about embracing where you live.  And I REALLY have to embrace my home since in the winter months since I try not to leave it much.  It's absolutely no secret that I am not a fan of freezing fingers and toes and driving in blizzards and that weird feeling of my nose hairs freezing... and I dream of the days when I can move to a climate of pure "dry heat" or "extreme humidity" or "year round bliss".  Yes please.  One of the hardest parts is that my DIY options are much more limited in the winter months, since you can't get outside to a well ventilated area.  Urg.

So you can imagine how my heart is racing with pure joy and happiness now that spring is trying to make it's way to the state of Wisconsin.  The sun has been out, the snow is almost all gone, the birds are coming back, I can drive without turning the radio off and clenching the steering wheal with a death grip, the boys' baseball season is starting and I am all stocked up on spray paint!  I AM FREE!!

I know what you are thinking, "Ok Jen, get to the point already!  Where are you going with this?  Isn't the Wednesday Reader Space post supposed to focus on someone other than you for a day?"

I am getting there.

You see, I am always weeks behind on Reader's Spaces since there is so much awesomeness in all of you, so when Tami sent me her story, it was still below freezing temps here in Wisconsin.  But what she shared with me left me feeling so inspired!  She organized her tools.  In her garage.  And did it by adding style.  My kind of girl.  My kind of project.  And I so badly wanted to imitate her awesomeness, but I was stuck in cold weather jail.

Not any longer, you can bet that what you are about to see by the fabulous Tami, will be repeated by me in the near future!

Tami wrote:

Hi Jen! 

I've been an avid follower of your blog for a while now. Nothing quite makes me happier than organizing the things in my life. For me, it's relaxing. However, I've probably spent time on your blog that I *should* have been spending our new 'fixer upper' by the beach. :)  

I recently finished a small DIY project in our garage. Instead of investing in another toolbox {that makes finding tools much more difficult and frustrating than it should be} I thought I might follow in my dad's footsteps and create a pegboard system in our garage. Although...  I added a pop of color to mine. It ended up being much less expensive than a fancy-shmancy metal toolbox anyway. I'm quite pleased with how it turned out and there is plenty of room for growth as I collect even more tools. 

Just thought I'd share it with you as another idea to add to the never-ending ways to keep our lives more organized. Here is a link to my post:

Big love, 

Ok, I get that this isn't probably the first time you have seen pegboard used for tools and won't be the last, but it's that "pop of color" that Tami added that really brought the whole project to life!  Ready to see another example or Organization + Paint = LOVE?

Tami blogged: "Growing up, I'd always admired my dad's pegboard organization system down in his workshop. All his tools were always so easy to find {I should know, I was his project-errand-girl}. All orderly and clean looking. Mmmmm. Now, that's what I wanted! Since we have our own private garage at the Beach Pad {a rarity 'round these parts}, I certainly had a place to hang it. So, I wandered off to the pegboard aisle, you know, just to check out the situation. 

Turns out, pegboards are way cheaper than fancy red toolboxes. Too bad they only came in a gross brown color. Or... did they?! I quickly scooted over to the paint aisle."

"Bingo! I found some fancy red toolbox Apple Red spray paint by Rust-Oleum. The wheels were seriously turning at this point. I picked up some peg hooks, brackets, and a few short boards and headed to the register. Total came in under $30.00 which was less than 1/2 of what that stupid ugly toolbox would have cost me."


It took a few applications of paint {3 to be exact} but the color came out perfect. 

See that old hammer? My dad used that to build the house I grew up in. Pretty sweet, huh?

A few chicken noodle soup cans with some Mod-Podged labels completed my screw organizing system.

And finally, without further ado... my new, fancy red tool-board in all her glory!  And the bright pop of color in the garage? Fabulous dah'ling. Just fabulous. 

These three pegboards actually hold *all* my tools [minus the power tools] plus an assortment of hardware. And the little shelves I installed at the base of each board, are just big enough to hold odds and ends but small enough to not interfere when a car is parked next to it. And it's red. I love that. 

I love that too!  That she painted it red!  Seriously, instant artwork in the garage that also doubles as storage!  Tami proves yet again, you don't need to "make it fancy" to make it functional.  Her pegboard system would work just the same if she wouldn't have added the red spray paint.  But taking it that step further...  Takes it to a new level.  And it gives you that extra sense of proud.  And I find that I am more strict with myself on maintaining my systems and home when I love how it makes me feel to use those systems and to be in my home.

Let's not lose sight though, of the functionality of peg board systems.  They are very cost effective.  They hold just about anything you want them too.  They are perfect in the garage for tools {clearly}, yet they also work wonderfully in craft spaces for all of those crafting tools and containers, and in laundry room's for sewing and laundry essentials.  Why not in a pantry to hold kitchen tools and utensils?  Really they are so incredibly versatile and clearly can be made into beautiful creations!  And not only are they great for storing nearly anything, but they keep those things at your finger tips and you always can see it all at a glance.  WIN WIN WIN!

And a button for you:

IHeart Organizing

Thank you Tami for kicking my booty in gear to get out in my garage and give it some much needed color splash!  And for sharing your inspiring story with us!

So who else had a severe case of cabin fever this winter?  Who has been getting their DIY on now that the weather is becoming more accommodating?  How about a fun spray painting project you have done lately that left you feeling in love?  And tips for tools? {and I mean the DIY equipment, keep it nice}

Want to be featured in a Reader Space edition?  Have an awesome organizing story to share?  I am looking for projects that have made a positive impact to your life.  Please send your story and photos to and I would heart to feature them right here, on the blog!!  Photos should be high resolution and un-editted.  Please include a description of the project, including any costs, inspiration, and how it has changed your life and routine for the better!  Oh, and no worries my friends, we will NEVER judge "before" pictures because that just wouldn't be nice!  Only love goes on at this blog!  More Info HERE.


  1. Ohmygosh the red is PERFECT!!! So vibrant -- it's almost movitvating to use the tools! the board screams "you know you want to get to work!" haha

    Jenn @ Peas & Crayons

  2. Jen - I feel you!! I live in Minnesota, and have been waiting for the day that the weather is good enough for the spray paint to return!!! Because when it says do not use below 50 degrees, it means it.
    I am so excited that it is now warm and I can pull out all my paint cans to start on my list of projects :)

  3. Love that! I'm going to make my husband read this post...hopefully he will want to reorganize his tools this weekend. :) They are in 3 HEAVY tool boxes & I can't ever find anything!

    A few other ideas for peg boards (especially painted ones): My mom uses them to hang her jewelry in her bathroom, and my dad uses one for his ties. He hung it behind the door to their guest room.

  4. Awww, Jen- you should see the grin on my face right now. I feel *so* honored you featured my little red-pegboard-project! Just... tickled.

    *Sending you some serious CA sunshine your way.

  5. The red really looks great! It has a retro feel to it. Super!

  6. Ha! It may be warm here in Los Angeles, but the expensive housing market is no fun at all. You wouldn't believe what the rent is in my 2bedroom apt...

    Love the peg board - much easier to see everything when it's all laid out like that. And I love the special hammer. :)

  7. I'm loving this garage organization!

  8. LOVE the brightness of the pegboards! My hubby is in the process of building a workbench... maybe I can get him to paint it some snazzy color! :)

  9. I heart Tami! She runs one of my favorite blogs! I can't wait to see what all she does with her beach pad rehab! :) This tool organizer has me buzzing with inspiration!


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