Laundry is something we all have to do (whether we like it or not!), which is why a useable laundry space is essential in every home. So, how do you get the most from a small laundry space both in terms of function — washing, drying, and ironing — as well as storage and style?
The key to maximizing the space you have is starting with a smart layout and incorporating custom storage solutions that utilize every square inch. To give you an idea of how you can transform your existing laundry or plan a renovation, we asked the experts for their top design tips.
1. Place your appliances side by side.
The location of your washer and dryer is often determined by the location of the existing plumbing, unless you plan on spending the time and money to move it. If you’re starting from scratch, the best configuration is often to have them side by side rather than stacked. This means that you can then place a bench over the top of them, creating a workspace with a decent length.
2. Include a folding station.
A countertop in your laundry room is invaluable as a folding station, so try to make it as large as the layout allows. Ensure it has a decent depth as well as length and is made of a moisture-resistant material such as laminate. These surfaces not only look great, but they’ll also last for many years of laundering.
3. Try overhead storage.
Don’t leave the wall above your counter empty — this is prime storage space! Whether you choose to go for closed cabinets or open shelving (or even a combination of the two). Make sure the bottom part is in arm’s reach for your height, as you don’t want to have to bring out the step stool every time you use them.
Open shelving can be made from either the same board as your cabinets or contrasting materials with a timber look or matte black metal framing. Open shelves also allow for airflow, so they work well in a laundry room where there’s a higher moisture level than the rest of the house. If you have lots of smaller items to store, use baskets or boxes on your shelves to contain them.
Shelves are also a nice way to bring décor into your laundry for extra style points. If you can, connect your laundry style to your kitchen so that there’s a sense of flow in your home.
4. Incorporate varying cabinet heights.
Don’t forget at least one tall cabinet for your ironing board, broom, and mop. Even better is if you can fit in a floor-to-ceiling cabinet. This extra space can be used to hang clothes when ironing.
5. Use baskets and hooks.
It’s amazing how much you can store in baskets or storage boxes. Be mindful to get enough to cover everything you need from the outset so that you don’t end up with mismatched types down the track. If you’re really keen to show off your organizational prowess, you can use a label maker ($24.99, Amazon) to neatly label each container.
6. Consider a sink.
While some small laundries just won’t have space for a sink, you won’t regret installing one if you have room. It will give you the convenience of having a place to do hand-washing and other messy jobs like washing your pet.
Top Tips for Small Laundries
- Front-loading washing machines are the best choice for small spaces as you can stack a dryer on top. If you can stash your dryer elsewhere, front loaders also provide an extra counter space.
- Plan storage carefully — think integrated cabinetry with pull-out laundry bins, built-in ironing stations, and hanging rails.
- Use utility baskets or small bins, or install shelving to separate and organize different products and utensils.
- Install hooks for coats, mops, and backpacks to keep these items from cluttering the floor space. A shoe rack ($26.99, Amazon) is also a good space-saving and organizational item.
- Save space with a combination washer/dryer unit.
This article originally appeared on our sister site, Homes to Love.
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