How to create an organized paint storage system in a utility closet using DIY shelving, pegboard, and a basic organizing kit.
Praise be! We have an organized paint storage closet all thanks to Robert because he knows literally the best gift he could ever give me is an organized space. Well, I mean I guess our kids are ranked up there too… minor exception, right?
Ever since our unexpected renovation started this summer, our garage has completely imploded with chaos. And the biggest culprit was our paint storage system. Meaning basically, there was no system at all.
But we had this storage closet in our garage and Robert had the idea to make it our Paint Central since we are always painting something and have supplies coming out of our ears.
Organized Paint Storage Closet
- Leftover white paint
- Wood scraps (for building smaller versions of these DIY closet shelves on either side of the door)
- Pegboard organizer kit
- Pegboard baskets
Note: Our closet already had pegboard in it from the previous owners that we reinforced with construction adhesive and painted, but you can get pegboard here.
We made “stations” inside of the closet for different paint supplies for prep, paint, finishing, and hand tools. Shelves on the left hold dropcloths, rags, spackle, liquid sandpaper, primer, and wallpaper paste for prep along with pry-top cans of various paint colors and polyurethane we use often.
I chose not to label the shelves since we wanted flexibility to move things around as needed to as we use supplies. (If you really wanted to label everything though, I use this simple label maker for a lot of things.)
Tips for Storing Old Paint
- Only Keep What You Plan to Use – I usually keep the usual neutrals around: white, black, and gray in satin, eggshell, and semigloss since I use those colors and sheens the most. But it got to the point where we had probably 50 cans of partially used paint in a variety of colors and there was just no way they would be used within a couple years before it went bad. You can donate unused paint to Habitat for Humanity where it can be put to use for a good cause.
- Save Just Enough for Paint Touch Ups – Before tossing/donating old paint, you can pour just a small amount in jars for touching up areas around your home. I like these paint touch up cups to keep paint air tight with a room labeling system and a mixing ball to eliminate the need of a stir stick when you need a quick touch up somewhere.
DIY Paint Storage Shelves
We followed our old basic DIY closet shelving tutorial by using just scrap 1x2s and plywood we already had to build shelves to store items beside the door frame so we wouldn’t waste any of the precious space in those niches.
See that skinny section on the right where we put caulk and spray paint? That was totally unusable space until those shelves came along. Every inch counts!
Each shelf is dedicated to each item: spray paint, spray primer, caulk, construction adhesive, spray adhesive.
Paint Supply Storage
This pegboard organizer kit and these pegboard baskets were our saving grace in making sense of all of the paint supply things like brushes, rollers, painter’s tape, trays, sprayer, caulk guns, putty knives, etc.
For smaller items like sanding pads, tape, and caulking tools, we placed them in the baskets. The kit had so many pegboard hangers and hooks to choose from that we were able to hang everything else on hooks.
Storing the paint brushes bristles down makes a lot of sense so that after we wash them, they can hang to dry while damp and drip onto the ground rather than collect water in the brush handle.
For the few things like buckets and a step stool, we just keep it on the floor of the paint storage closet.
So that’s our organized paint storage system!
It’s nothing that fancy and we didn’t bother with labeling the shelves or hooks, but I feel like I can breathe easier now even if the rest of the garage still looks like a bomb exploded on top of a train wreck in a tornado.
Between this organizing this paint storage closet and the garden shed supply closet though, we’re slowly getting there.
Progress over perfection is our mantra around here.
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