Wednesday, June 20, 2012

34 Reader Space: A Pretty Place for Washing Clothes

When we started working on our updated laundry room, I had one goal in mind and that was to make it pretty!  Today's reader did the same!

I have always been a huge believer that we are more productive and just happier when we heart our surroundings.  And who loves to do laundry?  Maybe a few of you, but the last time I checked, it didn't rank high in the list of favorite things to do.  So creating a place that you enjoy spending time in, even if the room's main function isn't the most glamorous, is a great aid to getting chores done with a smile.

Shan shared:

For a family of five, we have a lot of laundry!  Our last home had a laundry closet.... just enough room to fit the washer and dryer.  I wanted to make sure our new house had a nice size laundry room since we spend an abundant amount of time in there.  Did you notice I said, "We"?  Yep, except for my eight year old, every member of our family {including my husband}, does their own laundry.


We used small slate tiles for the back splash and front of the counter.  We bought black granite tiles for the counter top, much more inexpensive than slab granite.  I chose the least expensive utility sink/faucet combo.  This is the first time I've had a sink in the laundry room and I love it!


This is how I sort my dirty clothes when they come into the laundry room.  It was my idea to have the builder build these cubbies for my laundry baskets.  I found the labels and idea of attaching them with clothes pins from Better Homes & Gardens.

 
I purchased Elfa drawers at the Container Store.  They work well and slide all the way out for taking to family member's rooms.  The chalkboard labels came from Pottery Barn Outlet.  I wrote my kid's initials on each basket.  They are responsible for putting away their clothes when they are clean.


To the right of the baskets is a thin broom closet where I keep my broom, mop and other cleaning tools.  I hot glued a table runner to make a pocket to slide by tension rod through and it made a perfect little curtain to hide the cleaning tools.


Isn't the space incredible?  I had to know more!

What is the main function of the space?
It is THE place for sorting our family's dirty laundry, washing/drying/folding and ironing our clothes.

Any superstar tips for keeping it organized? 
The ONLY way I can keep this room organized is by simply doing laundry.  If laundry is stockpiled then it overflows out of the baskets and on to the floor.  This is a huge NO NO for me.  There is nothing I dislike more than walking into our decent sized laundry room only to find it filled with dirty laundry all over the floor!


We do at least two loads of laundry Monday through Saturday.  As long as I do that and family members empty their baskets, it stays pretty organized. 


What items did you find essential when organizing this space and why?
After many years of doing laundry I found a system that worked for me.  I was ecstatic to be able to build our home and spent many hours figuring out how to set up this laundry room.  The essential ingredients for me were LOTS of storage, a sorting of dirty laundry area and an area to put the clean clothes.  I also wanted a place to store my broom, mop and other cleaning tools.

What did you do to go the extra mile and "make it pretty"?
Never before have I tried to make my laundry room pretty.  I did with this one.  It is a room I frequent the most in my home, so why not make it pretty?  The blue on the walls makes me feel calm and reminds me of the ocean, my favorite place.

Where did you find your inspiration?
I found a lot of my inspiration from Better Homes & Gardens Magazine and of course perusing through many blogs.

What items did you DIY to stay on a budget?
I bought the mirror at Goodwill and repainted it.  I made the clothes pin mirror, used a table runner as my drape for the broom closet, printed out the labels and decoupaged the eggs in the vase with book paper.  {All of these DIY projects are explained in more detail on my blog}.

How has this update impacted your life for the better?
When my laundry room feels organized I feel like all is right with the world.  This room has been a huge blessing to me and my family.  I am very grateful I took the time to organize and decorate it.  A completed project such as this one has been a dream come true!

  • I love that she took the time to plan everything out prior to installing and building, to ensure she was able to achieve all of her goals for the space.
  • They stretched their dollar by selecting smart finishes that look like a million smackaroos!
  • She put her personal touch on the space by DIYing projects and labels.
  • I adore that she thought to use a table runner as a no sew curtain project!  Genius!
  • I really admire the overall functionality of the system.  Dirty clothes in one area, clean clothes in another!
  • The bins for the clean clothes are quite genius!  One for each family member to own and put away their belongings ensures clean clothes never get mixed with dirty.  We actually recently implemented something similar and it works amazingly well!
  • The built in washer and dryer base is beyond fabulous and most likely far less expensive than the pricey store purchased options.
  • The entire room is just one happy space, even if it means chores must be done.

A special thanks to Shan for allowing me to share her awesomeness today.  If you are looking for more details, you can find them on her blog here {along with oodles more organizing eye candy!}


ATTENTION!!  Want to be featured in a Reader Space edition?  Have an awesome organizing story to share?  I am looking for projects that have made a positive impact to your life.  Please submit your story and photos here and I would heart to feature them right here, on the blog!!  Photos should be high resolution and unedited.  Please include a description of the project, including any costs, inspiration, and how it has changed your life and routine for the better!  Oh, and no worries my friends, we will NEVER judge "before" pictures because that just wouldn't be nice!  Only love goes on at this blog!

34 comments:

  1. Seriously incredible room, now I have wishful thoughts going on

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  2. Wow! I have some severe laundry room envy! That is a fabulous room.

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  3. I really don't get the sorting dirty laundry thing. If everyone does their own laundry, what are they sorting? Do they put darks in the dark pile, then wait for someone else to put in more darks? Do they put it in the dark basket then dump it in the washer? Would that necessitate the entire structure being built? Do they bring each day's dirty laundry in and put it in the appropriate basket? But then it would get mixed in with other people's laundry and I thought everyone did their own? I sort, but I do it at the hamper, then carry the load to the laundry room. I'm not saying this critically, because this room is great and meets my need for cubbies and labels, etc. I just see these things all over blogs and Pinterest and don't get it. So thought I'd ask. Thanks.

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    1. Sometimes when my kids are doing a load of laundry they don't have enough clothes of a certain kind to do a full load. For example, say they are needing to wash their lights. They can grab some lights out of the lights bin. I am the one who sorts the clothes from their left over dirty laundry while they are washing a load of clothes. Does that make sense? So the sorting of the dirty is more for me than the kids. We all take our hampers to the laundry room and unload there, then we take our hampers back to our rooms. Hope this helps explain it better for you DemMOm :)

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    2. Thanks, it does explain. Not sure why it was always so confusing, but something I've wondered about. I think my family of 4 must have a lot less laundry than a lot of people. Can't explain why that would be, but it just seems that way.

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    3. That's something to be grateful for, my dear. ;) I was thinking I need to get rid of a lot of clothing to make less laundry...lol. :D

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  4. I LOVE this... I wish I had a laundry room this big. And, I especially love how each family member has their own clean clothes bin. So cute!

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  5. Love those Elfa drawers. It's cleverly planned and looks great!

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  6. I love that the washer and dryer is up off the floor! Save your back! Beautiful space!

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  7. Wow, I'd love a laundry room like that, so well thought out. I've never seen the appliances raised off the floor like that before - what a great idea.

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    1. It's a great back saver Carole. :)

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  8. I have some laundry room envy going on.

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  10. Gorgeous room! One question, how does a person do two loads of laundry a day?! I am out of the house most of the day, so doing laundry that often seems impossible to me. When I do get it started, it often ends up sitting in the dryer overnight and getting all wrinkled! Do you have a system? Maybe it is easier because of the location of the room? (mine is downstairs).

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    1. Jen, let me first say I envy you to some degree. I never thought I would be a full time Family Manager. It's nice to be able to get out of the house every day, and talk to people, etc. However, I have wondered how full time working Moms can keep up with housework because I barely do and I work at home. Guess God knew what I needed. Anyway, the very first thing I do in the morning is put a load of laundry in the washer. Then sometime during the day I remember to switch the load to the dryer and add another load to the washer. Now here's the key...make sure the rest of their family retrieves their clean clothes out of their baskets. If the kids are home, they are supposed to take their clean clothes to their rooms right away {doesn't always happen.} If they are at school during the day, then it is their responsibility to take their basket of clean clothes to their rooms and bring back the empty one. If the baskets of clean clothes are not emptied then the laundry piles up because there isn't a place to put the clean clothes right away. Hope this makes sense. I've never had to write/type my laundry routine before. It's difficult explaining it without showing you. Maybe I'll do a video...good idea! :D If I leave clothes in the dryer overnight, I do a touch up cycle and the wrinkles fall out! ;)

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    2. Shan, you certainly shouldn't envy ME! I work two 10 hour days... as a nanny! So, I'm not exactly out talking to other adults during the day. The other days I'm home with my 5 year old, but we never seem to be home. I usually take him places where I can talk to adults! (play dates, activities, etc). We come in for a bit, then go back out. The problem is that when we do come in, I forget all about the laundry!
      A video tutorial on a laundry system... now that would be a first! But, I bet a lot of people would watch it! I would! :)

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  11. I have got to share this (with all its comments) with my daughter who is in her first home with hubby and two little boys. Laundry piles up, on the floor, in the clothes baskets, everywhere. You have got such a pretty space and such a good system. Maybe it could be inspiration for her.

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  12. Table runner as curtain for broom cubby = sheer brilliance. LOVE that!

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  13. Wow! This laundry room is truly inspiring! I will be BLESSED if I can have one like this in my future home! I'm sure I can implement these tips no matter how much space I have! Thanks so much for sharing!

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  14. Oh my goodness, Jen! You have blessed me tremendously today by sharing this space. I am completely grateful and honored by your words of encouragement. Furthermore, I am elated with the response of your readers. It has brought me much JOY! I realized by the questions I've been asked today...I need to be a little more thorough in my writing. Either that or I need to make a video...lol. I have been so inspired by your blog and am grateful there are super organized people like you who share your tips and secrets with us. {especially for the organizationally challenged like me ;)} Time to go spend some time with the hubby now. Talk to you soon!

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  15. So inspiring! My favorite part is her answer to your question about superstar tips for keeping organized...do 2 loads of laundry everyday! I totally agree...no matter what laundry organizer I buy or how much space I have, the key is just DO IT...wash that laundry! And hearing that another family of 5 gets by with 2 loads a day, 6 days a week gives me hope that I can do the same for my crew of 5. Thank you!

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  16. Love this room! Anyone have suggestions for making a basement laundry room in a two-story house more user friendly? I do have a laundry chute, so that helps.

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  17. Someday when we build our home I want a laundry room like this! I love the separate bins for dirty and clean clothes. Mine always seem to get mixed together! Thanks for sharing!

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  18. What an awesome space Shan created. Thank you for sharing it. It's really become apparent that my laundry room can use beautification since I do spend so much time there.

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  19. Love, love, love this laundry room! I love the cubbies for the laundry baskets, the raised platform for the washer/dryer, and the pull-out bins to put the clothes in. So want to copy this if we ever get to build our own house! The only thing it needs is a drying rack!

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  20. Oh my! This is one amazing room! I dream of having a dedicated laundry room one day!

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  21. This is a wonderful room! I, too was able to design my own laundry room when we added on to the house. It isn't this big, though, so I don't have room for all the dirty/clean laundry storage. We have dirty clothes hampers in each bedroom and I fold and sort the laundry as it comes out of the dryer. The kids can then put away their own clothes. I do wish I had space for central dirty clothes hampers just to get them out of the kids' rooms. Very nice job on yours!

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  22. I was hoping for some more info about the elfa drawers, what size are the dimensions if these baskets from the container store or do you know of a link to purchase this specific system? I Love it!!! Thanks!!!!

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  23. It would be really nice to live or work in a space where everything is in order. You might not need some items at the moment so you can keep in storage because you cannot really throw them away just yet. Having a clutter-free living or working environment does not only mean that you have a beautiful space but this also means that you can become more productive with the things that you do.

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  24. I love the style of the room. I am totally not a hamper person. Clothes are brought to the laundry room when they are done being used! I have a very small room, so my baskets are The Container Store stackable ones, but my kids were taught at age 2 to sort...so they know what basket to put in.

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE the Elfa drawer system. Right now, I fold everything on my bed and leave my kids piles. I just started having them put their own clothes away this summer, but it will for sure continue. With 5 kids, there is a TON.

    As far as working moms getting stuff done, it's all about time management!!!

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  25. Wow what a washing room. If i had the same laundry room i just love to spend my most of the time here and keep washing the dirty clothes..

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  26. Love your organized Laundry Room! Would you share the paint color?

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  27. What size elfa drawers are those?????

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  28. I know this was a year ago. But What are the dimensions of the laundry basket cubbies?

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