laundry rooms today. Mine, specifically.
Can I just say two things about laundry rooms before I go on? 1) Laundry rooms are very difficult to photograph. There is pretty much no natural lighting and they are cramped and tight. 2) Laundry storage (unless it's in a magazine shoot) is rarely drop dead gorgeous. If it's real life and practical, well... it looks it. So I give you my "as pretty as I could make it, very real life and practical laundry room." (grin)
This laundry room happens to be the go-between from our garage (which we actually use for parking both of our cars) and the kitchen/hallway area. You are pretty much in the heart of our home when you walk through this room and into the house, with our kitchen island directly in front of you. To your left is our hallway to the front door, and we've got some terrific Ikea shoe storage located there. Which we use. But it's not enough.
There has also always been the matter of storage in this room. Or rather, lack of storage. One flimsy wire shelf hasn't cut it but we've made it work, stashing other items under cupboards and cramming them onto random shelves in random places. (Such as first aid items and cleaning supplies.) I knew we needed to stack our washer and dryer right after we got them, several years ago. However, life happened and that project went on a back burner. We finally decided to get things figured out in this room last month, and purchased a stacking kit from the store we bought these from. It was around $20. (They were also available to install it for us and we were thrilled to get that part done by someone other than ourselves, but it didn't seem particularly difficult.) (Also, that family hub just hasn't been used to it's fullest by anyone but me after the first few months of school began, so I have moved it and am working on a better solution currently.)
I began by identifying how this room functioned for my family specifically, along with what it lacked or needed.
1) We never fold laundry in here.
2) We come inside from the garage daily, bringing coats, shoes, and seasonal items.
3) Shoes are our biggest problem and my kids don't work well with drawers or anything that requires anything more than flipping the shoe off and onto a surface. It's true.
4) More storage was needed. (I listed the following in need of a "home;" a small stack of campfire blankets, cleaning supplies, laundry items, seasonal clothing and accessories and first aid items.)
5) I preferred the open shelving concept rather than something with cupboards because this room is more of a practical space, than a pretty space and I wanted things I could grab quickly. I looked at both options.
6) Better coat storage that was more out of the way, now that the washer and dryer were stacked on the wall we used to hang coats against.
7) Better hiding spot for brooms and mops.
8) Hanger for my iron so it would quit falling over and leaking water on things.
9) Some kind of memo board for jotting quick notes, maybe even magnetic or chalkboard-ish when we walk in.
10) A laundry hamper for cleaning rags, wet dishcloths, random socks. (You get this, I know you do.)
I found two small baskets at TJ Maxx with burlap liners and even though I'm not a huge fan of burlap, I liked the look and size of these, and thought they went with the shelf nicely.
I stole Joe's old sports basket (From Land of Nod, years ago) and hot glued some burlap into the shape of a basket liner. Then I stenciled "Laundry" on it. It was the perfect size- tall and slim and easy to move.
The best part, everyone got their own cubby for shoes and we should have plenty of space now along with the hallway storage we have been previously using!
I love having space for extra cleaning supplies and a bin for the ones currently being used, along with a cubby for our campfire blankets. They come in handy on chilly nights with friends over, toasting marshmallows.
into jars (Sometimes I still make my own laundry soap) because it was cuter and why not?
radio parts box that I wasn't using, white, with red cross details, and tucked all of our first aid and medicines into it. It's so much handier in here. I'm always bandaging a scraped knee on the sidewalk or front lawn anyway, so I don't have as far to go for the Neosporin anymore.
sunscreen and swimming goggles.
laundry bin daily. I love having it in here. I think I still need a tiny garbage can for dryer lint but so far I just make people turn right around and place it into the kitchen (under sink) garbage can.
Also, I relocated our old hanging broom/mop organizer behind the door that opens into the kitchen. It's a perfect spot really, and totally hidden from view.
project fail. Eh, we all have them. I decided to give my beloved chalkboard a couple coats of magnetic paint with hopes that I could top it with chalk paint and we'd have ourselves a magnetic chalkboard. Yes, well... I followed the instructions to the letter but it just didn't work out and magnets kind of slid slowly to the bottom, rather than staying put and being magnetically useful. In the end, I sanded it back down and re-coated it with chalk paint again and now we've got a four-part chalkboard that probably nobody will use. Regardless it's there if we need to jot a note to someone. Ya can't win em all.