Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Organizing Under The Sink

Now, I know a lot of people complain that under their sink is sooo messy. But seriously people, you ain't got nothing on me. It is like a bad episode of Hoarders under there, except in this case the hoarder also has a whole lot of pipes. Ready for the before shot? Children and people with medical conditions are recommended to be out of the room.

See, it's not even that it is really messy, but it all goes all the way back into the corner (the oven is to the left). And that giant gold pipe goes all the way back to the back wall before turning. Hence it is just an awkward mess in there and I can never get anything I need (Lord help me if I need my giant soup pot in the back corner). The other issue is that because of the pipes, it is hard to fit any shelf in there!

But then I was at Canadian Tire the other day and I found this shelf on sale for about $10 (ok, technically this was over a month ago...I got busy!).

Now obviously my pipes are not so neat and orderly as the one on this box, but I thought perhaps I could make this work to organize under my sink.

First things first, I cleaned everything out from under the sink:

I found this huge stack of tiles that I didn't even know were back there! I found these small white tiles in the pile, which had me so confused because I don't HAVE white tiles in the condo. However while doing laundry later I realized that the laundry closet in the front hall has white tiles! Now why my laundry room has nice white tiles and my bathroom has stupid off-white tiles I don't like...don't ask me.

So anyway, I finally had the space cleaned out.

Ewww, right? My vegetable oil leaked a bit over the last 3 years. It took a bit of elbow grease, but I finally got the bottom looking white again. I have seen on other blogs where they use peel and stick tiles to cover up damaged cabinet bases under the sink, so if your's isn't cleanable, that is an option as well. Mine was in great shape still so it didn't need that.

Then I worked hard trying to get that darn shelf together. I had a hard time figuring it out how the pieces went together (the instructions needed photos for sure). Once I figured THAT out, it took me forever to find a good configuration under the sink. I still wanted to put my large pots in the back since I only use them once per year, so I wanted the shelf in the front area, but it wouldn't fit around the pipe (The ends were solid squares and so I couldn't get it around the pipe, which would be ideal).

Finally I just did this.

Who knew the small saw in my toolkit would come in handy?

Once I sawed through it, I was able to pop it around the pipe and get that thing together!
 It took a bit of time to find the right heights for the shelves. The bottom one needed to go over the pipe that extends to the back, and the top one needed to be low enough to go under the higher pipes. See? Not as simple as the picture on the box! And yes, I can still reach over the side to access the pots in the back. But if not, the shelves snap on and off super easy and the length quickly extends and shortens, so I could make it smaller in a snap to grab something.

Finally, I put everything back! (and took out the garbage. How good am I at realistic before photos, eh?)

I even moved one of my big pots to the bottom (behind the purple Finish tin) so I can't see myself ever going into the corner unless I need to make soup for 50 people and need a stock pot. Yay!

All and all, I high recommend this product. It is very sturdy and makes great use of the awkward space around the piping. Obviously it works better with larger items because it creates some large gaps that small items would fall though. But I am sure some sort of rubber mat would help with that.

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