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This garage is never a mess!

When Tom Nylund, an influential mountain biking figure, told us that his dream storage space would be functional, easy to keep organised and inspired by a Formula 1 garage, Elfa stepped up to the plate.

Tom Nylund’s cluttered storage space as it used to look.

Tom Nylund is an influencer and outdoor enthusiast with a YouTube channel where the main focus is on mountain biking, along with running and skiing content too. Tom needed a garage where he could store all his bulky equipment and be able to do his work and filming too.

“I used to keep all my things in the family’s storage room, but it was really cramped and difficult to find my gear among all the sledges and other stuff that you find in a “normal” garage. Tidying away things that I didn’t want in the videos took a lot of time, and it was also frustrating not being able to find my stuff or having to stop filming if someone’s head suddenly appeared in the background,” Tom explains.

White plastic boxes stacked on top of each other.

Tom has always had a clear vision of what works for him when it comes to being organised:

“My system is based on storing things in plastic boxes/trays with lids, writing the contents on a strip of tape and sticking it onto the box. It might sound primitive, but that’s the only system that works for me! I have accepted that this is the only way for me to keep things organised. If I don’t write it down on the tape I forget what the box contains, and then if I need to find something quickly things can get a bit stressful.”

Although this system worked for Tom it still presented a problem. The boxes were all stacked on one another, which meant it was a hassle every time he needed to get something from one of the boxes furthest down. When the opportunity arose for Tom to rent a garage opposite his house for his exclusive use, Elfa started working on a storage solution tailored to meet his needs.

Bikes standing and hanging in the previous storage system.

“I needed a clear wall as a background for filming, strong shelves that can hold heavy boxes, and a flexible system that lets me move things around quickly and store my gear according to the season. It was also important to be able to hang my bikes on the wall because they cannot be stacked on top of one another as that damages them.”

Did you have a clear idea and any inspiration for the garage?

“Yes, definitely. For example, I’d carefully studied how things work in McLaren’s Formula 1 garage! It’s a hectic, sweaty, demanding environment, but everything has its own place which they clean thoroughly when they’re done. A place that is easy to clean was therefore on my list of requirements. I have also been inspired by the TV programme MythBusters and its wall of storage bins that just keeps growing.”

Completely empty garage before the new storage system was installed.

Tom began the job of fitting out the new garage by measuring the wall and drawing on it with chalk, as well as placing post IT notes to create a template. Elfa’s storage experts provided professional input. As well as suggesting ideas like storing skis on bracket posts furthest up and having a stand for wood, they extolled the benefits of pull-out shoe racks. Wet gloves dry more easily in airy mesh baskets, for example. Hanging tools on a wall board with a mix of different hooks and boxes makes it easier to keep them organised and see where they are. For Tom the outdoor enthusiast, the result was a functional, well-organised storage heaven.

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What do you think, is it easy to keep things neat and tidy in here now?

“This garage is never a mess! You could say that I have a dual personality: I enjoy my artistic freedom when I’m filming and recording material. That’s when I put my creativity to work and it can be spontaneous, innovative and unstructured. But to be able to do that, I need to have things organised and know where they are. I can’t compromise on that.”

Tom Nylund sitting in his garage fixing a bike tyre.

“The results are amazing and have saved me a lot of time and frustration! I like it so much that I can spend hours at a time, sometimes whole days, in here.”

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Overview of Tom Nylund’s storage system from Elfa, with skis, plastic boxes and tools in place.

The work surfaces of the Elfa shelving system are made of metal which makes them easy to wipe down and keep clean. It is also easy to sweep the floor because the shelves do not go all the way down.

“It is especially important to clean up ski wax immediately. Not only does it get dirty, the floor becomes lethally slippery too. I put very muddy bikes on rubber mats and take them out to the yard where I hose them down.”

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Which features are you particularly pleased about?

“Most definitely the flexibility of Elfa’s system. Ordinary wooden shelves are not as flexible and tend to waste a lot of space. With this system, I don’t need supporting posts between the shelves, which is great because some of my gear is quite wide. It takes no time at all to lift my bikes down from Elfa’s special bike hooks. It’s extremely practical and doesn’t take many minutes to adjust anything in here. I’d say that my Elfa storage system is quite dynamic and not static.”

Tom Nylund lifts skis and poles off Elfa’s wall system.

Tom passionately explains how satisfying it is to have everything in its place and it becomes clear that this is particularly important for someone with an active lifestyle like Tom, who sometimes steps straight out of one outdoor adventure into the next.

“When I’m pressed for time, I’ll take a whole drawer or whatever I need from the garage and put it in the car. It is much easier that way, having helmets, gloves and protective gear ready in a large plastic box or wire basket that I can lift out and then put back.”

Storing board with various hooks and boxes where tools, cleaning stuff and lubricants are stored.

The only thing that’s missing here is a beer cooler, right?

“Well, I’ve noticed that people who have a cooler in their garage tend to focus on drinking beer there. And that’s nice, of course. But I prefer to do that elsewhere. I want to use this space for doing what I like. Vlogging about the outdoors and other things, putting camping stoves and bike shoes into the right boxes and getting ready for the next outdoor trip.”

It’s obvious that Tom has created his own man cave with help from Elfa. Here in the garage, he wants to spend time doing what he enjoys most. And what he most appreciates about the storage system is the structure it has brought to this space:

“There is a saying that “Order brings peace to the soul”. I have to admit, it’s true.”

Tom Nylund puts on gear in front of his wall-mounted shelving system.

ABOUT

Tom Nylund, 39, is a media personality with a focus on outdoor activities and mountain biking. He lives in Helsinki with his partner and two children, a seven-year-old boy and four-year-old girl.

Instagram: @tomnylund

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