Shoe Organizer Projects on Hometalk

Posted by John on January 23rd, 2015

Happy Friday!

In today’s post I wanted to share with you a collection of shoe organizer projects I’ve curated on Hometalk.com.  Each of these projects are available for viewing on my Shoe Organizer Clipboard on Hometalk.

If you don’t already have a free user account at Hometalk, I’d recommend you sign up for one.  You’ll be able to post your own projects or questions and comments to other user’s work.  It’s a great resource for DIYers.

Here’s the shoe organizer project collection:

shoe organizer projects


Have a great weekend and we’ll be back next weekend with more shop work!!


Posted in Closets,Garage and Tools. Tagged in ,, , ,

Free Shoe Organizer Plans

Posted by John on January 30th, 2014

Over a year ago, we completed a shoe organizer project to help clean up some of the cluttered mess of shoes we have in our garage.  We don’t wear shoes in the house so we had a good 8 pairs or so of shoes just piled up in there.  Since that post went live in 2012, it’s been one of our more popular pages.

shoe rack

As promised, I’ve just completed the woodworking plans for this shoe organizer and if you’re interested in getting a free copy, just subscribe to our free newsletter and you’ll immediately get an email with a link to all of our woodworking projects.


Posted in DIY Projects. Tagged in ,, ,

Garage Shoe Organizer Finished

Posted by John on November 12th, 2012

***UPDATE:  The woodworking plans for this Shoe Organizer have just been uploaded to our Plans page.  To get access, just subscribe to our free newsletter using the sign-up form in the sidebar or following this post.  Immediately after you subscribe, you’ll get an email with a link to the Plans page.***

Hope you all enjoyed your Veteran’s Day, especially if you were home from work like I was!  Big thanks to all those who served and those that continue to serve today.  With the extra free time this weekend, I was finally able to get the garage shoe organizer finished!  Jackpot.

After finishing up the build portion of the project, I brought the piece up to the garage for painting.  The plan was to spray on a couple coats of white primer and then follow that up with a couple coats of black gloss.  Those plans changed once I started spraying the primer.

garage shoe organizer

shoe organizer primed

I had a hard time getting good coverage in between those shelf areas.  It took some contorting.  It also took a lot of primer.  I went through 3 cans!  I couldn’t believe it needed that much.  So instead of repeating this process with the black gloss, I just opted for a small roller and a brush.  I’m kinda picky when it comes to painting.  Spray paint is almost always my first choice.  You get a nice even coat that looks professional.  Using a roller and a brush is nice, but it can leave brush marks and it never goes on as smooth.

But, you know what?  This piece is plywood and it’s going to be holding our shoes in the garage.  It’s not going to be in the Guggenheim.  I can roll the darn thing.

DIY shoe rack

You know what?  It didn’t come out too bad.  The roller and brush method worked just fine.  To install the shelves to the wall, I used toggle bolts for the top two holes and regular screws for the bottom set.  The bottom brace on the shelf coincided with some lumber in the wall.

The toggle bolts are great for holding heavier objects to drywall.  I trust them over molly bolts any day.  To use them, I just drilled two holes in the top plate with a drill bit just a touch bigger than the diameter of the bolts.

To recess the bolt a touch, I then used a bigger drill bit and only drilled the hole halfway through the wood.  Unfortunately, the plywood tore out some.  You can eliminate this tear out by either using tape over the hole or starting the drill before you engage the bit with the wood.  No big deal though.  I can touch up the paint or just cover the holes.  If I were using regular hardwood and not plywood, I wouldn’t expect this type of damage from drilling.  But, with plywood, those laminate layers can tear occasionally.  Oh well.  Lesson learned.

The toggle bolts are a two piece system.  You actually need to setup the bolt onto the piece you’re fastening before you insert anything into the wall.

The other catch with toggle bolts is they need a large hole drilled into the drywall.  These required a 5/8″ size hole.  That’s pretty sizable.  The biggest bit I have in that range is 1/2″.  To get to 5/8″, I just worked the hole a bit.  It’s easy to expand drywall.

Once the bolts are inserted into the wall though, they grab pretty good.  As long as no one really puts any major weight on this shelf, they should hold nicely.

close up of shoe rack

I like it.  More importantly, Lisa likes it.  It works pretty well too.  We put enough shelves in there just in case they start piling up out there.

shoe organizer done

So now more piles of shoes all over these steps.  Makes going in and out a little less of a hassle.

If you can’t tell from some of those photos, the garage overall still needs a good amount of cleaning up.  Trying to make some time to get to that, but it’s not easy.  It tends to be somewhat weather dependent too.


Planning on any projects in your garage?  How do you keep your shoes organized?

Posted in Carpentry,Garage and Tools,Staining and Painting. Tagged in ,, , , , ,

Garage Shoe Rack Part 2

Posted by John on November 4th, 2012

Happy Monday!  We had a mildly productive weekend.  Not gonna lie though, we’re much slower at home projects since the summer ended.  Here’s the deal, I’m taking a grad school class that requires weekly homework assignments on top of being parents, working full-time and doing general everyday life stuff like cooking, cleaning, eating, etc.  I’m thoroughly enjoying this class, but it’s amazing how marginal my free time is.  In the summer, when I’m not taking any classes and the days are longer, it seems like I can knock these projects out quicker. Oh well.  It is what it is.  In other news, we’re almost done our garage shoe rack.

Garage Shoe Rack Part 2: The Sequel.  Unlike most sequels, this follow up IS better than the original AND the book (there is no book).

We last left off with the shoe rack looking all framed up.

shoe organizer

Now this isn’t bad.  If I wanted to, I could start painting it.  But, the shelves are plywood and I think they’ll look better if their edges are hidden.

shoe rack before trim

To hide that plywood edge, I’m going to glue and nail on a piece of poplar that’s the same thickness as the shelf.  I’ll miter the edges so it wraps around the shelf.

poplar wood trim

Once the side pieces are added, it will look like this…

See, no more plywood end grain.  After spending a good amount of time trimming out those ten shelves, the construction portion is complete.

garage shoe rack

To mount this shoe rack to the garage wall, I’ve added a top and bottom plywood board that can be used for a fastener location.

Remember, this whole thing is mainly held together with some wood glue and pocket screws.

After some sanding, it’s ready for the paint shop, i.e., my garage.

shoe organizer ready for paint

Insert exciting cliffhanger music!!

This is where we’re going to leave off since we haven’t finished painting it.  We’ll be priming it white and then finishing it with a black gloss topcoat.  Really looking forward to getting all those shoes up off the garage floor #firstworldproblems.

So this is what 33 is like… getting excited about a garage shoe rack.  Enjoy your 20’s while it lasts.

What’s new and exciting in your neck of the woods?  Everyone doing okay after Sandy?

Posted in Carpentry,Closets,Garage and Tools. Tagged in ,, , , ,

Building a Garage Shoe Organizer: Part 1

Posted by John on October 9th, 2012

***UPDATE:  The woodworking plans for this Shoe Organizer have just been uploaded to our Plans page.  To get access, just subscribe to our free newsletter using the sign-up form in the sidebar or following this post.  Immediately after you subscribe, you’ll get an email with a link to the Plans page.***

Ahh, back to my wheelhouse.  Carpentry.  It’s been a while since I worked on anything substantial.  We’ve been talking for sometime now about adding some sort of shoe organization system to the garage to get all of our shoes off the floor.  I’ve had a basic idea of what I thought the shoe rack would look like and what works for our space.  We looked around some stores to see if there was anything that would work and we didn’t find anything.  I thought this would be a great, somewhat quick project to keep us busy and would go a long way to straightening out the garage.

Garage Shoe Organizer: Part 1 (Click here for Part 2, and Click here for Part 3)

I started with one 4’x8′ sheet of 3/4″ thick Birch plywood.  Since I’m going to paint this project and not stain it, Birch is an ideal wood choice.  MDF is also a good paint grade material, but it’s heavy as hell.  Can you use solid wood instead of plywood?  Yes, but, solid wood is a lot more expensive and is much more subject to expansion and contraction from changes in temperature and humidity.  Since this is going in the garage, which is not a heated space, solid wood is a bad idea.

The first thing I did is cut a couple 9″ wide and 75″ long pieces from the sheet.

Then I took a speed square and used it’s angle markers to mark one of the boards with lines where the shelves will go.

Once the board was marked, it was time to dress up the edges.  Plywood edges aren’t ideal for painting.

To hide the edges, I use some wood glue and nail a strip of poplar hard wood to cover the edge.

It looks a little goofy now, but once it’s sanded and painted, it’ll look good.

Now it’s time to add the shelves.  I measured the shelves to be big enough to accommodate my sneakers, since those will be the biggest shoes on the shelf.  They’re also plywood.  To attach the shelves to the rest of the assembly, I’m using pocket screws on the back of the shelf.

This was the most monotonous part of the job so far.  We’re adding ten shelves, with two pocket holes each.  That’s a good 30 minutes of clamping, drilling and un-clamping.

Once the shelves are all attached to the first side, I can attach them to the other.  More on that next time.  Here’s what it looks like now.

Feels good to be building again.  Any projects you’re currently working on?  Need to clean up your shoes?  What do you do to organize your shoes?

Find the next post here: Shoe Organizer Part 2

Posted in Carpentry,Garage and Tools. Tagged in ,, , ,

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