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Wasted Spaces

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Overview

If you’re one of the nine out of 10 people in this country who complain they don’t have enough space in their homes, DIY Network’s Wasted Spaces is the series for you. On every episode, master builder Karl Champley shows how to solve your space management problems by taking better advantage of your existing space. Whether it’s banging down a wall, going under the stairs or punching through the ceiling to create an overhead closet, our Wasted Spaces expert shows how to make the most out of the nooks and crannies you’re not using now.

Episode 1. Under Stairs Closet

Sarah Eddins faces a common dilemma:  they’ve got kids coming and going all day long, dumping their book bags, shoes, toys, and coats in the front foyer each time the door opens and closes.  A closet under the stairs could be a good solution, but it’s awkward access makes it more of a hindrance than a help.  Our plan is to bust through the closet wall and build a storage bench and pull-out bin that will help Sarah keep her kids’ things organized and provide a place for the kids to park themselves out of the way while putting on shoes and coats. 

Episode 2. Attic Access and Flooring

Chris Caldwell is a pastor of a new church…so new that the church doesn’t have its own building yet, so everything the church has from hymnals to Christmas wreaths, must be stored in the Caldwell home.  With the basement full, Chris is frustrated that he can’t access the almost 400 square feet of storage above his head in the attic.   A ridiculously small access panel in the laundry room requires climbing over the washer and dryer and doesn’t accommodate even the smallest boxes.  Our plan is to find a new way to access the attic by cutting a hole in a bedroom ceiling, installing a pull down ladder, and adding flooring to the huge attic space above.  Whether Chris uses it for storage or a future room is up to him, but at least now he’ll have access to it!

Episode 3. Laundry Room

The Spirko laundry room was an afterthought.  It was originally a canning room, and certainly not configured to accommodate the laundry needs of a young family.  Even the laundry chute, which was a good idea in theory, can’t be used because the clothes fall into a black hole they cannot access.  Our plan is simple.  We’ll remove the useless, narrow canning shelves, move the washer and dryer, and add a folding/work table and storage shelves along with a cabinet to help the Spirkos out.

Episode 4. Garage Loft

Chuck Spicka loves his huge garage.  He loves it so much that he turned it into a home office  and rec room for he and his wife, both of whom have home-based businesses.  Problem is, they’re already out of space!  We took one look at the space and figured out why-almost everything they have is on the floor.  Things are looking up for Chuck-literally.  We’re building a loft in the garage area that will almost double his storage space and allow him to keep the work space and rec space separate.

Episode 5. Collector’s Cabinet

Chip Goodwin has a passion.  And this passion is taking over his home.  You can find evidence of his passion in his bedroom, in his study, in his kid’s room, and even in the kitchen.  What is his passion?  Baseball cards…hundreds of thousands of them!  Chip’s family has had enough, especially his daughter whose bedroom cabinets are stuffed with Chip’s cards.  Our plan is to build Chuck a customized closet in his study using wasted space under the stairs.   We’ll
bust through the wall, install a custom closet and even add a safe for protecting the Mickey Mantle and Babe Ruth treasures. 

Episode 6. Entertainer’s Kitchen

Leigh Dalton has very little room in this kitchen to cook, much less entertain. She loves to have friends over, but has to yell at them in the other room or bump into them in the kitchen; so, we’re tearing out the wall and creating an entertainment counter with tons of storage. We’ll start by tearing out her kitchen wall. Next we’ll add new counters and counter tops. Then we’ll build a wine bottle and glass rack so Leigh can entertain in style.

Episode 7. From Garage to Cottage

Kim and Chad Pelton love their charming tudor style home in a historic neighborhood.  What they don’t like so much is the garage behind it, whose door is long gone and has an ugly black tarp hanging in its place.  Inside there is…well…everything.  Junk and more junk with a few useful things thrown in. On the perimeter of this space there are lawn and garden tools and in the back, some kayaks Kim and Chad use a lot.

Meanwhile, inside their tiny house they are busting at the seams because they have nowhere else to do their crafts and hobbies.  So they want to clean out the garage.  Simple enough.  But we suggest they take it one step further-build a wall, add some windows, and turn this garage into a workshop. 

Episode 8. Changing Table

Emily Davis is 9 months pregnant with baby  Madeline..  Her small nursery is ready, but with the crib and rocking chair already in place, there’s very little room for anything else.  And Emily knows she needs something else:  a changing table.  Our plan is to build in a changing table much like the ones found in airports and restaurants, but to add personal touches and more storage.  And when baby is finally out of diapers, the changing table will turn into a useful dressing table for Baby Madeline.

Episode 9. Valet Cabinet

Charlie Jansing is a busy guy.  REALLY BUSY.  He runs his own businesses

(plural!) and is very active.  Every day he plays tennis, runs, or does some other form of activity and every day he walks in the kitchen door, removes his size 13 shoes, and drops everything right where it is.  Charlie’s wife has had it.  She doesn’t want his junk on her kitchen counter, doesn’t want to trip over his shoes and gym bags! So we’re going to help Charlie build himself a custom valet cabinet into a nook that otherwise goes unused.  This fabulous valet will include coat, shoe, and tennis storage as well as cubbies for cell phones, PDA’s, and other work paper and even has built in power for charging the electronics he cannot live without.

Episode 10. Storage for Siblings

The Meek family has five children and a great bonus room for them to gather in and play.  But the toys, games, and electronics are taking over and mom and dad say enough is enough.  So Dad and his oldest child are taking action. 

With our help, they’ll build a storage cabinet into the knee wall where each child will have his own space for storing whatever needs to be put up.  When all is said and done, the cabinet will look as if it was built in to the house at construction.

Episode 11. Outdoor Workshop

Tim Gibson inherited a fabulous and unique home from his father.  As he and his wife strive to make it their own, they are uncovering unique spaces that are hard to use because Tim’s dad was a bit of a collecting freak.  One such space is outside the house.  Our plan is to take this already-covered area, level it, add decking for a floor, build a potter’s bench and create a space where Tim and his wife can tend to their garden needs without tripping over old bike tires from 1963!

Episode 12. Sliding Wall of Storage

Caryl and Greg have a gorgeous, well-kept home.  Everything has its place.

Everything, that is, except Greg’s video games and DVD’s.  In fact, Greg’s home office is so cluttered that Caryl doesn’t even go in the room anymore. 

Eventually, she wants that room to be a nursery, but until then, she has to figure out how to get Greg’s stuff under control.  Our plan is to move Greg and his gear completely out.  We’ll build a sensational customized built in shelf with a twist-the shelves will move to reveal Greg’s flatscreen television and video console.  This should give Greg the storage he needs for his work items, and the discreet hiding place for the video games Caryl desires.

Episode 13. Pantry and Bathroom

Stacey and Teddy Waters have a small home and two kids with big appetites.

That’s why the lack of pantry space is sending Stacey to the edge of sanity.  They have hardly enough room to store what they need, and they go thru it so fast that she’s constantly having to restock.  What Stacey needs is a bigger pantry, but there is nowhere to put it. 

Meanwhile, while we’re at it, Teddy has another beef…the only downstairs bathroom is in their master bedroom so anytime anyone, guests included, need to go to the restroom, they have to travel through Stacey and Teddy’s personal space.  Teddy and Stacey are at their wit’s end, but we know exactly what to do.  IT starts with cutting a hole in the kitchen wall-straight into the bathroom on the other side-and adding a door.  Then we’ll address the pantry by building a freestanding cabinet on wheels that will slide right into the under-stairs closet.  We’ll quadruple their storage space with just a few nails and plywood.