The laundry room is usually the part of the home that gets ignored the most, even though most people use it every day—sometimes multiple times a day. Instead of leaving it a cluttered mess of detergent bottles and dirty clothes, transform that space into a functional and well organized thing of beauty. These tips for outfitting a laundry room will help you turn the room around in no time.
1. Make Room for Baskets
Hands down the best way to whip your laundry room into shape is by using baskets to keep everything organized. You can put some small wicker baskets on a shelf to hold specialty cleaners, or larger baskets on one side to store your dirty clothes. The key is to make sure that they have a dedicated space in the room.
2. Install Water Resistant Flooring
This one might seem like a bit of work, but it’s definitely going to be worth it. Water resistant materials mean that you don’t have to worry about damage from any spills, drips, or leaks. If you’re incorporating your laundry room into a mud room in your home plan, you might already have this planned or in place.
3. Label Your Bins
Bins and baskets are probably the best way to keep a laundry room neat and tidy, as long as you actually know what to put in them. Add a tag to each bin so you don’t accidently mix clean and dirty cloths, or toss the lint into the recycling bin. Use stickers, decorative signs or even chalkboard paint to create fun labels that match the theme of the room.
4. Remember the Power of Drawers
Standard drawers can quickly turn into a jumble of junk, so ditch the traditional and create your own specialized drawers. Attaching drawer slides to a laundry basket is an easy DIY trick that gives you more space and keeps the bins out of site. If you do need to use the standard drawers, always use dividers to keep the space sectioned.
5. Think Vertically
When space is limited, like with a closet laundry room, using shelves or stacking storage units helps you take advantage of the extra vertical space for ultimate efficiency. This is pretty much what stackable washers and dryers were built for.
6. Don’t Go Overboard with Overhead Storage
Cabinets and high shelves are a wonderful way to add some extra storage space, but they can also leave laundry rooms feeling cramped. Make sure you have enough space above your machines and any floor storage units, and mix in some uncovered shelves and door-free cabinets to keep the room open.
The cabinets above the washer and dryer in this laundry room from a 4-bedroom, 4-bath, 2-half-bath Craftsman home planuse space that would otherwise be wasted (House Plan #163-1027). By using upper cabinets on one wall only, the homeowner avoids creating a cramped space here.
7. Turn Unused Space into Countertops
Having a table in your laundry room for fold clothes and other tasks is great, but not always possible in smaller spaces. Solve this by putting a countertop above your front-loading washer and dryer – it’s space that would otherwise go to waste!
8. Backsplashes Aren’t Just for Kitchens
Little touches like a subway tile backsplash behind your utility sink can make the entire room feel new and sleek. Go with a pattern and color scheme that fits with the whole laundry room to keep it cohesive, and don’t be afraid to reuse your extra tiles from the kitchen backsplash.
9. Keep Kid-Friendly Cubbies Low
Cubbies are a great way to get your kids involved in laundry and organization, especially if your laundry room is on the main level of your house plan and easy for them to get to. Set up a space close to the ground that’s just for them, so you can easily toss in their dirty cloths without any excuses.
10. Hide Machines in Plain Sight
Looking at your washer and dryer every time you enter the room can become overwhelming, and make the space feel small. Use cabinets, rolling doors or even a pair of tasteful curtains to cover up the machines when not in use and give your laundry room some breathing room.
11. Pick a Color Scheme
Using matching tones throughout the room creates a unified feel to the space, so choose tones that fit your mood and personality. A blue color scheme can give a sense of calm, while a bright pink can make you feel cherry and happy.
12. Shine a Light on Dark Laundry Rooms
Nobody wants to spend time in a dark laundry room, no matter how much you decorate it. Overhead lamps with full spectrum light or LED bulbs to create the feel of natural lighting. Under cabinet strips also help bring concentrated lights to important areas.
13. Wall Storage is Your Friend
When you’re dealing with a smaller house that has less floor space, smart wall storage can make all the difference. Whether it’s setting up a dedicated hook for your iron and ironing board, or a full set of shelves for cleaners, it keeps the room open and organized.
14. Remember, the Floor is Not Storage Space
Avoid putting bins and baskets directly on the floor whenever possible, since it fills up the room and is much harder to keep organized. Instead, use a shelving system to keep the bins centralized in one space and in the order that works best for you.
15. Keep Trash Cans Close—and Covered
It’s always helpful to have a tiny trash can in the laundry room for cleanup, especially when throwing away dryer lint. Just make sure you keep it covered to reduce odors and keep dirt from speeding through the air.
16. Reclaim Door Space
The great thing about over the door racks is that you have so many different options available, so you can find one that matches the size of your door perfectly. You can use a longer storage rack to hold your extra cleaning supplies, or a shorter rack to keep the most important items (dryer sheets, detergent pods, etc.) front and center for easy access.
17. Foldable Drying Racks Save Space
Regular drying racks for your delicates take up a lot of space and can quickly turn into permanent fixtures. Use a folding rack that you can store in a closet or that pulls down from the wall so it’s not always in use, and gets put away when the clothes are dry.
Looking for More Renovation Inspiration? Check out our selection of house plans with laundry rooms to get more layout and design ideas. Or share your own laundry room ideas in the comments below.
Note: the lead image is of a large laundry room in a 6-bedroom, 5-1/2-bath Craftsman home plan. For more infomration, click here (House Plan 163-1047).