Monday, January 6, 2014

DIY Matchbox Car Garage **UPDATED**

Hi friends!  There has been such an overwhelmingly positive response to my Do-It-Yourself car garage project that it became very clear to me that I was not the only one in desperate need of getting their kid's growing collection of toy cars off the floor.  

Knowing that not everyone out there has the time, resources, or interest to be a DIY'er I've been thinking, "How can I get this car garage to the masses?" And so with encouragement from family and friends the Mom! Where's my car? wall garage has been put into production!

I am thrilled to announce the opening of the Mom! Where's my car? online shop!

Buy Now
Remember when I mentioned that I've been working on something here?  This is it!  It's been a very long but very exciting process to get this business up and running and I could not have done it without the support and urging from many of you to make it happen.

We designed the Mom! Where's my car? wall garage to be convenient, customized and made with high quality materials.  Without having to leave your home you can shop, receive and hang your way to a toy car clutter free floor.


The Mom! Where's my car? wall garage improves upon the original converted shoe rack by having customized consistent spacing between each shelf and most importantly comes completely assembled with all mounting hardware included.  All you need is a pencil and a Phillips screwdriver and in 4 easy steps you can put the brakes on toy car clutter!  Click here to buy now.


If you told me two years ago that this seemingly simple idea would be as popular as it is and could potentially be the little engine that could clear toy car clutter forever I would have laughed.  But if my family and I can bring some peace, independence, and organization into your home then all our efforts to bring it to you will be worth it.



Come along with us to put the brakes on toy car clutter at Mom! Where's mycar?

And for all  my fellow DIY'ers who still want to know how we built it, below is the original post.

***Original Post***

This one goes out to all those moms out there with little boys who are obsessed with Matchbox cars.  You know who you are.  And I know you feel my pain (literally) when I tell you I have had enough of stepping on these little metal cars in the middle of the night, screaming profanities and cursing at myself for buying so many of these d*mn little metal foot torture devices.  Finally, an easy and cheap solution for storing and displaying Matchbox cars.


This was our previous toy car storage "solution". 


 Which inevitably would end up like this... everyday.  Not much of a solution.


I have been on the hunt for a functional and cheap way to store these cars for months... actually, years!  Then I happened upon this brilliant solution to repurpose a shoe rack.  I headed to Bed Bath and Beyond to purchase 2 racks (each contains 3 tiers/shelves) - so I had a total of 6 shelves.  I decided to hand paint them to match the color of the trim in the playroom (Behr Swiss Coffee).   In retrospect,  spray painting would have been a MUCH faster process (note to self: add paint sprayer to birthday wish list).


But while I painted, so did the boys.  Apparently, they produce much better artwork with shoes off.


After two coats of paint, I called in the Mister (because he doesn't trust me I hate using power tools). Stack 2 tiers on top of each other using an L bracket to make the shelf wide enough to hold a matchbox car .  Tip: drill little holes into the wood first to prevent it from splitting when screwing on the bracket.


Next, the rack was mounted up on the wall.



 Cue music.



I'm in love.  Not only was this crazy easy to make (minus the mistake of hand painting it), cheap and functional but it's also super cute to look at!  It's almost like a piece of art on the wall.  The boys love it, too.  It's like their own little car museum.  And now they can easily find and access the car they are looking for instead of dumping the basket of cars all over the floor!  

I'm sharing this post with these fun parties this week:
Get Your DIY On at House by Hoff * Give Me the Goods at So Much Better with Age Hit Me With Your Best Shot at Just a Girl and Blog * The Inspiration Exchange at Clean & Scentsible * Work It Wednesday at The Turquoise Home * The Inspiration Gallery at Craftberry Bush * Weekend Bloggy Reading at Serenity Now * Frugal Friday at The Shabby Nest Link Party Palooza at I Heart Naptime




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71 comments

  1. Replies
    1. Thanks, Colleen! This might be my favorite organizing project to date :)

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  2. This is genius!! I bet they get played with a lot more too! Love and pinning! Thanks do much for sharing?0! XO

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    1. They totally play with them more now that they are out in the open and easy to find. Thanks for pinning! xo

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  3. LOVE LOVE ur idea. I have the same situation at home every single day, Piinning this

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  4. Absolutely LOVE this project! As a mom of 3 boys, we have far too many little cars...I'm featuring it in the morning on OneKriegerChick from the Hit Me With Your Best Shot Link Party! Thanks for Linking up and hope to see you this Tuesday at 7!
    Happy Day~Ariean http://onekriegerchick.com/

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  5. As a mom to a toddler, I love this idea. And how fun for them to see all of their cars displayed! No more looking for McQueen =)

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  6. My little Girl would adore this! I like the rainbow layout too.

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  7. Girl, you know I love this! My boys are so jealous! I'm so glad you shared it at both Get Your DIY On and Hit Me with Your Best Shot, AND I'm pinning it so I can come back and admire it some more later! :-D Hope you're having a great week, Lauren!

    ~Abby =)

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  8. I love it, I am making it. It looks like you also used a bracket to secure the three sections together. Or did you just screw in place? I can figure something out, but yours looks so streamlined.... Thanks. We are really excited to see this up on our wall.

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    1. Hi Nicole! First I attempted to screw the 3 sections together but then i was afraid the wood would split. So i used clear mailing tape to attached them together. totally jimmy rigged. but you can't even see the tape and it seems to be holding steady. Let me know if you discover a less ghetto way to attach them! :) xo - LO

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    2. How wide. And how height is this

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  9. This is fantastic! I can't believe you got the idea from a shoe rack. GENIUS!

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  10. This idea is amazing! My kids have so many little cars at the bottom of a chest toy box! PS: Your boys have the most adorable hair!

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  11. Wondering if this would work for trains as well. How tall is each little 'shelf'?
    Thanks!

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  12. How tall is each little 'shelf'? Wondering if this would solve our train problem also.

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    1. 1 1/2 inches exactly. hope it works out for you!

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  13. I was wondering if it would hold trains too... Think it might be too small. Need to measure.

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  14. This is a FANTASTIC idea! We have a jumble box of cars in our play room. What a great solution! Thanks for sharing.

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  15. I love this idea! I see you painted six shelves, but I'm only seeing 3 in the final product picture. Do you have the other three somewhere else in the room? Or am I missing something? Just wondering how many Hot Wheels I can fit on the wall if I just buy one of the units instead of 2, like you did. Thanks! Alissa

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    1. She doubled them for width, so she used all 6 n this one display.

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    2. I bought mine at K-Mart and the only difference was I got the 2 tiered shoe shelf and she bought the 3 tiered shoe shelf. I paid $19.98 total for the shoe shelves and under $10 for the brackets, wall anchors (drywall), and screws. I did not paint mine yet, because I'm debating staining it instead (personal preference). I counted 107 cars on mine and this includes my son's micro drifter cars. The bigger sized trucks i.e. ice cream trucks, vans, those with anything protruding upwards would not fit in my cheaper version, so definitely take a few different cars with you to the store and compare the car to the space between the rungs. As far as the toys go, definitely worth it. Traveling with the cars, I recommend the Joy Mangano Better Beauty Case. It's zipper pouches make it much easier to keep them contained/compact.

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  16. I measured our Lego mini-figures too bad they need more than a 1 1/2...going to make it for our car collecting though thank you :)

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  17. Great idea! I really needed a solution for my son's collection. Thank you

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  18. Seriously, the most awesome idea ever! You could use a shelf like this for any of their little collections...pinning now! ~Lisa @ Practically Perfect Home

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  19. Think we need one for trains and one for cars.... Totally agree that stepping on those little metal torture devices is no fun in the middle of the night

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  20. Brilliant, maybe they will enjoy picking up toys now! Wonderful ideas, love it!!!

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  21. Thank you for this idea! My husband just made one for our son, and it is so awesome!!! Is there a way to share a pic? We left the wood natural too, since that look went better in our son's room. (One less step also). Don't know exactly which tools my husband used. I'll try to find out. There are three shelf pieces in each rack set, so when you double the pieces, you have the three level garage. If you only buy one shelf kit, you can only have one level.

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  22. Absolutely fabulous!

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  23. Can you share what the height is between the shelf spaces? We are looking at doing something like this for our massive collection of Thomas the Trains and want to make sure they'd fit. ;) THANKS!

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  24. lovely! I'll definetly try it asap!!!

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  25. Thanks for sharing! This will look amazing on my wall :D

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  26. Just finished putting a smaller version of this up on my son's bedroom wall. Perfect for him since he is visually oriented like me. Also, it is going to help control the amount of his collection, if there is no more room for his cars, no, mommy is not going to buy more. I did find mine which was a 2 tiered wood shoe organizer at the remaining K-Mart in my town for $9.99 each. The one at BB&B seems to be a bit wider in the sections which is about the only difference. I would suggest sanding these lightly because they do have splinters. Thank you for sharing this amazing clutter control idea. Loving it!

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  27. How did you attach your three sections together for hanging?

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  28. Thank you! Thank you for this idea! I finally finished my version. And my boys really like organizing it too. This is a saver for me.

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  29. Beautiful! I have two boys who have autism. They would love this. They love playing with hot wheels and obsess over sorting and organizing them. Im definitely gonna give this a try

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  30. You did a great job! It inspires me how to store my son's hundreds of toy cars.

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  31. I LOVE LOVE LOVE this idea! I would love it if you joined and contribute your awesome posts at my link party at City of Creative Dreams, starts on Fridays :D Hope to see you there at City of Creative Dreams Link Party.

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  32. This is awesome! We made a very large one from scratch, and it warped after a while, (and I finally decided I didn't want the husbands cars in our dining room anymore)! So I hope this will inspire him to get our basement finished and he can display them all again! Thanks for sharing!

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  33. I noticed some were looking for ideas to attach the 3 sections and I couldn't find brackets the right size so I used tiny, brass hinges. They fit too perfectly and you can't see them at all from the front. I wish I could attach a photo so yall could see what it looks like from behind. Hope that helps.

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  34. I saw this a few days ago and loved it for my 3 yr old car fanatic....so now we're in the process of building it ...the only problem we've encountered was when attaching the L bracket the screw goes completely through leaving the sharp point exposed...so hubby is now at Home Depot trying to find a solution :)

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  35. We encountered this same problem. Those sharp little points can be easily filed down with a metal flat file which can be found at Home Depot. It only takes a minute to get them all filed smooth so they don't cut little hands. Just make sure when filing to only go one direction, not back and forth. You can ruin the file.

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  36. How far does it stick out from the wall once it's up? The only wall space left in my sons room is behind his door. It'd fit perfectly there if it doesn't stick out more than 3 inches. :)

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    1. Hi Bianca,
      It's about an 1 1/2 inches deep. Ours fits right behind the playroom door as well. Fits perfectly! We just put a little door stop in the hinge for extra protection so the boys don't slam the door open in to the rack. Hope that helps! :) xo

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  37. Congratz! This looks amazing, one of the best DIY garages I've seen!At the rate my kid is collecting matchbox and hot wheels I believe I will have to make a similar arrangement cause all of the boxes have been filled and there's no more room on the floor :D

    Wrote an article about our experience with various die casts toy cars called Matchbox vs Hot Wheels vs Majorette Toy Cars.

    Just realized, if I made a similar shelf I could more easily explain/prove to my kid that he does not have to throw each and every car on the floor :D

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  38. Is glue used to mount the middle shelves or are you only using the 4 L brackets and allowing the middle shelves to be wedged between?

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  39. I read your article in Better Homes and Gardens. What a great idea! Thanks so much for sharing :-)

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  40. how did you hang it on the wall?

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  41. how did you attached it to the wall?

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  42. Great idea from a shoe rack! Kudos! May I ask what brand (company name) is the show rack. This particular brand of show rack looks like a perfect size for the cars. Thank you.

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  43. I love this idea! I also love the large wall hanging height measure that was in the background of the picture in BH&G. Where did you get that from?

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  44. This is such a great idea! We would love for you to share with us at Your Designs This Time!!

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  45. thank you for this post....I'm not close to a BB&B but can order...without putting the 2 together for the cars to sit on I wonder how wide only 1 slat is to set something on. I'm thinking of my rubber stamps.

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  46. I am so excited to put one of these together this week! Our Disney Cars collection is as much my kids' as it is mine!

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  47. I saw your car garage on Pinterest and it is exactly what I have been looking for as a way to store my wood mounted stamps. You are a genius. Thanks, Dona

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  48. I really love your wall garage; it's perfect for my son's overwhelming and increasing expansive car collection. The only problem I have is that your order page gave me this message:

    "Error from gateway: The zip code you supplied failed validation"

    Is there anything you can do? I'd really love to order one.

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    1. Hi Lori - We ship to all zips in the US. International shipments are handled on a case by case basis. Email me at info@momwheresmycar.com and we can discuss :)

      xo,
      Lo

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  49. Will be helpful for my ever expanding car collection!

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  50. Will be helpful for my ever expanding car collection!

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  51. Thanks so much for this fab idea and tutorial! It was a massive hit in our household, so I've shared it (with full credit of course!) over on my own site :-) http://www.millennialmartha.co.nz/play/matchbox-car-shelf

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  52. Looks great! Curious to the space in between the shelves? Looks a bit tight for what I want (to display cars still in box). box is about 1.5" tall.

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  53. I don't know if the comments are being checked here much anymore, but if they are, could someone please shed some light on where you're finding wood shoe racks with enough space between the slats? I'm having a hard time. The ones from the original post from Bed Bath and Beyond are no longer available. I've scoured the internet and my city...but to no avail. I can only find ones with the slats too close together to fit the cars. Any help would be GREAT! Thanks so much. And what a wonderfully creative idea. Love it!

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    1. Hi Phil,
      To my knowledge the particular shoe rack that I used in the DIY version is not sold in stores anymore. You can purchase a completed wall garage at www.momwheresmycar.com :)
      Sincerely,
      Lo

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  54. Just wondering if your "garage" will work for wooden Thomas trains too?

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  55. Wow. Love your idea. I was looking for the solution for a long time. ready display shelfs on ebay start at 100$

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  56. Love this and thanks for sharing ... gonna make 1 for my son.

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  57. This is a brilliant idea. I am featuring this on my site if you don't mind.

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  58. I just want to say I'm impressed with your son's Disney Cars collection. My son loves his Cars.

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