Every now and then I do a project that I really love. This is one of those projects. I did this garden tool storage wall as week 5 of my 6 week yard transformation challenge. Every time I walk into the shed and see this fabulous tool wall, it makes me happy. I’m all for a little extra happy in my life. Here are all the specifics of how I pulled this garden tool storage wall together. And how you can too!
This was done in a standard 8′ x 8′ vinyl garden shed, the kind you can pick up at Costco or Home Depot. Here are the supplies you will require to complete this project:
List of Materials for Construction
- 1/2″ Plywood – 1/2 sheet
- Dimensional lumber:
- 2″x4″x68″‘ – 1
- 2″x2″x70″ – 3
- Impact Driver
- 2″ PVC – 6″ x # of tools (I needed 10)
- 1″ screws
- Cordless Drill
- Chop Saw
- Straight edge
- Tape Measure
Pick a Wall, Any Wall
Choose a wall that is best suited to the placement of your garden tool storage wall. And then decide how much of it you want to allocate to tool storage. I had to work around my semi-constructed garden bench, so mine ended up being 68″ x 70″ I started by laying a 2×4 along the bottom edge of the wall. Mine was 70″ Then I added 3 – (68″)-2×2’s vertically. This allowed us to attach a sheet of plywood to the 2×2’s.
I didn’t want to screw through the side of the vinyl shed, so I left it to Greg, he’s a plumber, so if it leaks it on him (and he gets to fix it 🙂 So what we did was to use rubber washer, and then a metal washer to stop the screw from going through the wall, the rubber washer seals it. Warning – If you screw directly into the side of the shed, without a washer it will go right through the wall…trust me.
We put 3 holes in the side of the shed to hold up the 2×2’s to which the plywood is attached on the inside. I don’t think they will leak, but if they do, we’ll just apply some silicone to seal them. I had some left-over plywood, which is what I used. It’s just 1/2″ rough plywood. And because I was using leftovers, I put 2 pieces of together. The total height of the plywood is 39″ I wanted enough room to stagger the tools, allowing for more of them, and leaving room to add lettering. I didn’t use plywood all the way to the floor, to leave some swing space for the handles.
On the bottom, we screwed the 2×2’s into the 2×4 that was laid on the floor of the shed. It is very secure. This also allows you space behind the plywood, so that when you attach your tool holders the screws don’t go through the shed wall. I painted it with a coat of BEHR Paint and Primer in One. I have a can in one of my exterior house colours so that is what I used. Normally I would have used Zinsser Primer on raw wood, but the paint and primer in one, does the trick.
Pvc Tool Holders
Greg got the job of cutting up the PVC pipe. And he also had to supply it.:) We used 2″ white PVC pipe. It is pretty sturdy. We cut an opening in the pipe using the chop saw. On average the opening is about 1″ but we cut it wider for some of the tools, like the shovels that had a thicker handle. It is only slightly flexible, so you may need to cut some openings larger than others depending on your tools. You will want to cut the lengthwise opening first (as below) so you have room to handle the pipe, and then cut it to length. DO NOT cut right through both sides of the pipe! You are only cutting through one side. We cut these to 6″ length. If you don’t have a chop saw, you could use a hacksaw to do this.
I finished these off with a coat of Rust-Oleum silver metallic spray paint, and used 2 drywall screws to attach them to the plywood. I pre-drilled them first. Now they look more like metal, and also it covers up all of the printing on the PVC. You can paint them whatever colour works for you:)
You’ll want to plan out the layout of your tools and install as you go. You’ll fit more, by staggering them.. I started at the top center, with my fan rake. Do the lettering first, and then place your tool (and holder) after.
You will need a Cricut or other cutting machine to do this lettering. See the lettering supply list (above) for all of the required supplies.
You can either type the text directly in Cricut’s design space application or you can upload your designs. For this project I used my brand font, so I typed up the words that I wanted in Picmonkey first Then I just imported them into Cricut’s. Design Space.
Here is a super quick demo of how you can do this in Picmonkey.
Go into the design tab. Select the text icon. Click on the add text box. Choose the font that appeals to you and enter the name of the tool (ie: fan rake). that you want to print. Highlight the text and choose the font size, I used 150 px . Once complete crop the image, aso it is just around the lettering, nd apply. Resize to about 400 pixels wide. (maintain proportions) apply. Then export the file to your computer, save to a location that you will be able to retrieve it from.
Cricut Design Space
Log into Cricut Design Space™ app. If you are using one of their fonts, just click on the text icon and type in the name of your tool. Then select the font and size that you want. I
If you are uploading click on the upload icon and then upload image, then browse. Choose the file from your computer that you previously saved. Select simple image type, and continue. On the next screen “select and erase” Click on the areas of the image that you want to erase.Click first on the background of the image, it should now look “checkered” you will need to click on any additional areas that are solid, such as inside closed loop letters, like ” a” or “e” as below. Once complete click continue, At the next screen click on save as cut image and save.
On the next screen click on your file in the recently uploaded screen. And click on insert images. This will give you the layout on the screen to the same scale as the cricut cutting mat. Use the height or width selection to choose what size you want the letters to be. I used a height of 2″. Keep loading multiple images onto the project sheet, once you have them all resized to whatever size you want them, click the “make it” button. This will take you to the mat layout screen. Note that the measurement marked on the screen correspond to those on the actual mat. put as many words as you can fit on the mat. I used a 12″ x 24″ cutting mat.
Place your preferred colour of vinyl onto your cutting mat, and ready your cricut for cutting. Set to vinyl and allow your cricut to cut out your sheet. After you have the full sheet completed, cut out around the individual words, so they will be easier to work with. Here is a walk through, if you have not worked with cricut vinyl before:
Weed out the words using a cricut weeding tool, leaving the letters and removing the negative space around the letters.
Cut a piece of Cricut transfer tape to the appropriate size. Peel off the backing. Align over your letters and stick down. If it doesn’t go on perfectly, you can peel it up and re-apply – whew!
Run your smoothing tool over the transfer tape, to ensure letters are fully adhered. Next, Peel off the backing from the letters.
Out to the Shed with You
Now take your STICKY transfer tape (there’s a warning in there ;-)) and head out to your shed. Figure out roughly where you want your first word, or phrase to be. Use chalk and a straight edge to mark a line on the plywood. Then position the letters over the line, lining up the bottom edge. Stick to the wall, and when you are happy that it’s straight. Use your smoothing tool to rub it out, and make sure it’s fully adhered to the board.
My wood was not perfectly smooth, and I had no trouble with adhesion. Now peel off the transfer tape, if some of the letters lift a bit, use one of your tools, to hold the edge in place. I found it worked better by folding the tape over itself (as below) rather than pulling it away from the wall.
After you have peeled off the transfer tape, take the shiny backing from the vinyl and and place it over the letters, and rub it out to ensure that the letters are fully adhered.
TADA!!!!! and there you have it. Are you proud of yourself? I am!
Putting it all together
Next take one of your painted PVC tool holders, ensuring that the opening fits the handle of the tool that you want to use. Place the tool in the holder, so that the handle is hanging down, and place it on the wall so it’s where you want it, and not blocking your beautiful lettering 🙂 Use your chalk to mark a spot on the top center. Then pre-drill a couple of holes in the holder using a small drill bit. Now using your impact driver, 1″ screws and a long driver bit to attach the holder to the wall. Hang your tool, and you are done!! Just do the same for the rest of the tools.
Try suggest starting with your larger (and longer) tools first, and placing them higher, and then fitting in the shorter ones after. I “dry-fitted” them first, by just holding them up to see how they would work.
I’m thinking about putting a coat of minwax polycrylic over the entire thing so that the letters stay put, and can be wiped down if it gets dirty. It will require removal of the holders to do this. But so far the lettering is holding up great!
I’m so happy with how this turned out! I hope you love it too. It really wasn’t too labour intensive to do, especially if you are already a Cricut user. And honestly I’m actually pretty new to cricut, this is only about my 3rd project.
Here are a couple of more shots of the garden tool storage wall.
Want my lettering?
If you would like the use lettering template for the fonts that I used on my wall just click on the button below
Shout out to Cricut
If you don’t already own a Cricut cutting machine, it’s a good investment. I had wanted one for a very long time, and it really wasn’t that expensive. I bought mine to do lettering and stencils, but lettering is only one thing you can do with a Cricut, you can cut all sorts of materials, including leather! I’m only just starting out with mine, and I LOVE IT!! At first I bought my vinyl and supplies at Michaels, but then I put in an order directly through Cricut, and even with the US exchange, it was about about 30% of what it would have cost to buy it from the store. So, now I buy all of my supplies directly from Cricut.
Click here to go shopping at Cricut!
Now go forth and make your garden shed beautiful
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