Alright guys, back down to that basement. Maybe now it makes a bit more sense as to why we are tackling our storage problem? We need to clear out our office/guest bedroom to make a nursery for baby sprout! So not only do we need to better organize what was already down in that storage space, but we need to add a lot to it, too!

So you saw how we planned and then cleared out and painted the space at the bottom of our basement stairs.

Next up was a big trip to IKEA to get all of the pieces of the Algot system we were going to need. This ended up turning into two trips. We brought our measurements with us, and then on that first trip checked out the system, understood how it worked, and tried to plan in the store (using those really little pencils they have!). Inevitably we got too few of some parts and too many of others. No biggie though, a second trip later (in mid-install) and we were fine.

I didn’t do a super great job of taking photos of the Algot install (whoops! got too caught up in getting ‘er done!), but it’s really pretty simple. First step is to drill in these long rails straight into the wall where you want to hang your shelves or drawers – best to get them into studs and to use heavy duty drywall anchors.

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Then you insert brackets along the rails, and click your shelves or drawers into them. There are a few different depths and lengths of shelves, so you can really customize for what works best in your space. We went with a mixture of long deep shelves on the back (turquoise) wall, and then shorter/narrower shelves and drawers on the side wall.

Ignore the stuff we stuck on the shelves as we were putting them up – it was half because I just wanted them off the floor to walk around, and half because we were testing to see how high we wanted the space between the shelves to be.

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You can see in the next photo that we left some room to the left of the shelves on the turquoise wall. This was partly because that bulkhead stuck out, making it tricky to get the shelves to fit into the whole space, and partly because I knew we were going to need a little nook for our brooms and vacuum.

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Here is that side wall during our install. We were testing out the heights of spray paints and small paint pots to ensure we got the height of those shelves right. Need to maximise that space, yo!

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When you first click in the brackets that the shelves or drawers slide into, you can see that they look pretty rough and unfinished (look at the higher bracket compared the one underneath in the photo below).

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Well of course IKEA thinks of everything, so they come with these great little caps that snap on and finish the whole look off.

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Too. much. paint.

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So there are the beginnings of the install. We need to move that wooden shelving unit out of the space (it’s off to live in our furnace room for storage for our tenant), and set up a new armoire in its place. Since we have our “formal wear” (as long as I got my suit and tie…) in our guest room closet, we need to move that somewhere. See, I told you we’re having to squeeze a lot in here? And then I really need to properly organize the space – bins, and labels, and order, oh my!

Have you guys used the Algot system before? Or any other IKEA storage units? They really are pretty great and making it simple, adjustable, and attractive. 

  • jackie

    I’ve been waiting so patiently for this! I saw on a blog recently someone put up similar brackets, and they spray painted the vertical bracket that goes on the wall to match the paint colour. might be too hard now, but i think that would be one less visual clutter issue. We have the same wooden ikea shelf (actually 2 or 3) in the basement so i’ve been wondering if the algot is a vast improvement.

  • Kenz @ Interiors By Kenz

    We are working on our basement too. I really need storage and to get organized too. I’m so glad I found your blog. I’m here to stay, and don’t expect me to be quiet either :)

    ALSO CONGRATS ON THE BABY NEWS!!!!

    • gemma

      Hahah love that! And thanks!! :)

      xo,
      gem

  • jackie

    Do you know why I’ve been getting your posts sent twice in one day to me? It’s only your blog and I can’t figure out why! Your reply to my first comment confused me, so maybe something weird is happening. If you have any ideas…

    • gemma

      Shoot I have no idea! Sorry about that Jackie. I would suggest un-subscribing and then re-subscribing to see if that does the trick? I haven’t heard about this issue from anyone else. Let me know if that works!

      xo,
      gem

  • Catherine

    Oh!! Very nice and organized! I really like the large baskets… I might have to investigate that option for laundry room… I could use the baskets to sort dirty clothes by color/type before doing laundry!!

    • gemma

      That would be amazing! I wish I had a laundry room big enough for that. The roll out baskets are really great.

      xo,
      gem

  • Julie

    Awesome job! I just bought one of these systems for our tiny bathroom (we have no closets!) You did a great job with this. Did you run into any problems and do you know if the brackets are removable?

    • gemma

      Hi Julie! We didn’t run into any problems at all with the installation – pretty easy really. And yes, the brackets are removable, so you can switch it to another room or wherever down the road.

      Good luck!

      xo,
      gem

      • Julie

        Awesome! Thank you so much! I was worried that if I put a bracket in the wrong area I’d be in trouble… in other words.. But this is great! I’m making one more trip to Ikea, then it’s time to clean, paint and hang up the shelves :)

        Congratulations on your little sprout!

        ~Julie

      • debbie

        i tried fixing mine tonight and when i was done i began to put my stuff on them and BANG!! it all came crashing down… can someone please help!!! :(

  • nic

    We’re having a hard time pushing the brackets into the vertical rails. Did you have any problem? or was it smooth!?

    • gemma

      Hi Nic. No we didn’t have that problem – it was smooth. We pushed it in above the grove and then slid it down. Make sense?

      Good luck!

      xo,
      gem

  • http://n/a Jim

    I installed the Algot system in 5 closets in my home, I had an issue with the slide out baskets not working without installing shelves on either side of them. The issue I am having is that when the basket is pushed in, it seems to spread the bracket out and the front of the basket pops off of the rail. I triple checked the measurements and put shelves up to ensure that the fit is correct, but the baskets just won’t work. I am wondering if I am missing something???

    • gemma

      Hi Jim. Shoot – sorry to hear that you are having issues with your pull-out baskets. We haven’t had any problems at all — the shelves are installed on one side of the baskets, but not the other. I would take some photos of the baskets that are popping out, and then bring them into IKEA to see if any of the customer service folks there can help you out? Sorry that I can’t be of more help!

      xo,
      gem

    • http://www.bluebonnetsandbrownies.com Amber

      I’m having this problem too! Jim, did you ever find a solution?

      We installed Algot in our son’s closet months ago and didn’t have this issue, but now I’m thinking it’s because we had 2 shelves to one side sort of “bracing” the whole system. The entire left side is drawers, with the right side having two shelves – but we never had the issue we’re having now in our own closet with the rails widening just like Jim described. But we only have one set of shelves, at the very top of the closet. I’m thinking we need another shelf closer to the middle now.

      • gemma

        Hmm – Shoot! Sorry I can’t give you any advice, Amber. We didn’t run into that problem.

        Best of luck! Maybe get in touch with IKEA?

        xo,
        gemma

      • http://n/a Jim

        Hi Gemma, we didn’t necessarily find a resolution. I re-installed the rails (my father-in-law installed them the first go round) and paid very specific attention to the size, to the point that I would install the shelves and hold the next bracket up to ensure the fit was right. That seemed to take care of it. It seems that if they are even slightly off, it effects the whole system. Otherwise, if you have a bit of weight in the baskets, it holds them together.

        • gemma

          Well, good to hear Jim. I’m glad you were able to make the product work for you! I have always had some weight in the baskets, so maybe that has helped.

          Thanks again!

          xo,
          gemma