Your handy guide to garage harmony

Your handy guide to garage harmony

Your handy guide to garage harmony

Amy  Buxton Amy Buxton
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The garage was once thought of a man's domain but with all family members gradually moving their belongings and vehicles in, it has become just another communal family space and, as such, needs careful organisation and considered storage solutions.

While one family member might need space to work on a treasured car, another will be keen to hoard belongings that can't fit in the main house so taking everybody's needs into account is the only way to guarantee garage harmony.

Take a look at our suggestions for creating fantastic garages that offer usability and aesthetically pleasing design and see if you could do with updating your own!

Hang up your bikes

Bicycles are deceptive in that they look relatively unassuming but, en masse, take up a whole lot of room. You don't want to risk damaging expensive bikes by interlocking cranks and chains to try squeeze them all in so we suggest that you install hanging racks and hooks in your garage

The ideal solution, especially for cycling fanatics, hanging racks allow you to use the height of your garage to its full advantage, while allowing the bicycles themselves to be securely and safely stowed out of harm's way. By allowing bikes to take up less floorspace you are free to make good use of the area for other typical garage tasks, such as pesky oil changes, so hang them up before you get down to work!

Don't negate on shelving

This is something of a dream garage but we think it illustrates our point that designated shelving is vital for keeping your garage clear and tidy.

Though there is plenty of space to play with in this example from RB Arquitetos, the shelves themselves have been thought out carefully to house specific items, such as sports balls and skateboards. In a regular garage (that is not also a playroom), you will need to be aware of providing shelving for car maintenance materials, tools and everything that the rest of the family wants to get out of the house so don't skimp or you may find yourself driving over treasured possessions or tripping over them every time you enter your garage!

Include more than shelves

Storage needs can be incredibly varied so you will need to give a lot of thought to including other forms of storage, such as file boxes and designated sports equipment areas. After all, skis don't exactly fit everywhere!

This is a great example of a fantastically organised and well laid out garage with an entire wall having been dedicated to the storing and displaying of personal items. A great way to ensure that nothing is ever lost, we know that even the busiest of households will be able to make great use of a simple storage wall, such as this one, but it's up to you to make the kids put everything back where they found it!

Set yourself a work zone

Well this is the garage of many peoples' dreams thanks to the huge amounts of space. However, even smaller garages are a useful and valuable addition to your home, especially if you have a budding or experienced grease monkey amongst your clan.

For those that like to tinker or fix things in their garage, a designated workspace is vital as it helps to dictate where everything useful will be kept, while keeping the rest of the room clear of dirt and mess. It's always important to remember that you will not be the only person using the space so being considerate and keeping your items to one area will be appreciated and lead to far more family garage harmony.

Be a flooring fanatic

A concrete floor might be acceptable in some garages but if you are looking to build and create a garage that is not only suitable for the whole family to use but also pleasant to be in, we think that a funky floor is a great way to go.

This classic checker-board design doesn't only add style and personality to what can a very perfunctory space, it also serves a practical function. A level floor that makes it easy to identify dropped items is key in any garage, whether you are using it to fix skateboards or sports cars. The last thing you want to do is drop a screw, forget about it and then get into trouble later.

For those with a more modest sense of style, polished concrete makes for a beautiful but plain flooring solution and can easily be painted. You should at least consider something a little more fun though as this is your dream garage, don't forget!

Include a stunning ceiling

With your storage all sorted, a usable and attractive floor laid and your projects all planned, there is just one last thing to think about for your gorgeous garage: the ceiling.

While many garages are kept deliberately industrial in style with rafters and beams on show or a mezzanine for extra storage, we can't help but be impressed and inspired by this James Bond-esque space that just oozes class and style. The strip light that extends the entire length of the garage is not only a practical inclusion, it really heightens the finishes of the space as a whole and, though we may not have an Aston Martin to park in our garage, we would certainly love a space like this!

For more garage inspiration take a look at this Ideabook: Transform Your Outdoor Space: Extraordinary Garages And Sheds.

Are you keen to turn your garage into a usable space? Let us know in the comments, below.
Whitton Drive: modern Houses by GK Architects Ltd

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