Usually a small space in the house, the laundry room is responsible for a lot of things: washing and ironing your clothes, closet organization and storage. You can store the cleaning supplies for the whole house such as paper towels, toilet paper, liquid soaps and other bath and kitchen cleaning products, extra lotions, air fresheners and candles.
If the laundry room has a sink, It can also be the space where you do your flower arrangements, store gardening supplies and where your pet sleeps.
Having a well organized and streamlined room will make your laundry process more efficient, and adding some decorative accents like a wall color or nice cabinets will make your laundry time more enjoyable.
How to Start
Plan where you’re going to place your washer, dryer and your storage. Your storage space can be vertical, on top of the washer and dryer, or maybe you have the space for a small closet or some lower cabinets.
This is an utilitarian room that has to be very efficient, so take into consideration the activities that are going to take place there: have some counter space for sorting and folding clothes, as well as a place to iron them. Having a sink is very practical too.
Things to Declutter in Your Laundry Room
- Washing and drying products: detergents, fabric softeners, dryer balls, laundry sheets.
- Empty containers: we sometimes keep the Clorox or liquid detergent containers, but they’re too bulky and storing those items for “just in case” scenarios robs you of valuable storage space. A couple of glass jars that can store clothespins or needle and thread is fine, but don’t make this space the place where you throw all your empty glass canisters, those belong in the recycling bin.
- Mops and brooms: these have a life span, especially the brooms, and when they lose their shape, it’s time to replace them.
- Cleaning towels: every once in a while go through your towels and get rid of those that have too many holes in them. The fact that they’re for cleaning doesn’t mean that you should keep those awful ones that have already served their purpose.
- Mismatched socks: the laundry room is the hub for all of the mismatched socks, sometimes their pair is lost forever, it happens… and then you get to have those single socks creating clutter in your valuable small space.
- Baskets: yes, you can have too much of a good thing. Let’s make this laundry room a very neat looking and organized space by having matching baskets for the different activities.
- Flower vases: sometimes the laundry room is also the place where you do your flower arrangements if you have a sink. In that case, take a look at your flower vases and keep only those that you use and donate the rest.
- Gardening stuff: tools, chemicals, gloves, scissors, etc, should be stored together. Place the small items in a basket for easy access, and the big items can go next to your broom.
- Linen closet: if your linen closet is in your laundry room, maybe in the form of a bookshelf, then take everything out and return only the sheets and towels that are in good condition. Fold them so that you’re able to see what you have. A good tip is to store each bed linen set inside of a pillowcase. Place your towels together according to their use: the hand towels, the body towels and the beach towels all in their own stack.
- Extra recycling bags: nowadays, we are flooded with branded ecological bags from every store. Keep your favorite to go shopping and donate the rest.
- Hooks: сhange your rusty or plastic hooks for some aluminum sturdy ones. Besides being functional, the hooks can become part of the decor, they can even be mounted in wood if that suits your style.
- Drying racks: these come in different styles. They can be attached to the wall and folded when not in use in order to save space. Is what you currently have the best functional and aesthetic solution for your needs?
How to Design and Organize Your Laundry
Start by putting the larger and most important items in the space, which are the washer and dryer.
Cabinets: on the wall space on top of the washer and dryer, install some cabinets. Upper cabinets keep your cleaning products organized and out of sight. Remember to have adjustable shelves because some of the cleaning containers come in large sizes. You can also store your products in caddies inside of the cabinets. For example, the items that you use for cleaning the bathroom can be stored inside one caddy with a handle, with sponges and all, ready to be used.
Don’t forget about the space above the cabinets. That’s also a space that can be used to add some see-through containers and store toilet paper, paper towels, extra cleaning products and bath supplies, lightbulbs and even flower vases. Having a step ladder nearby is perfect for reaching those items.
Shelves: you might decide to install shelves on the space on top of the washer and dryer. In that case, have some matching baskets to organize smaller items. Have the items that you use the most in easy to reach places and arrange them according to use.
Baskets: there are several uses that you can have for your baskets in your laundry room. You can have small decorative ones or tall ones with wheels that make it easier to move clothes from the rest of the house to the laundry room. For dirty clothes that need to be washed. For clothes that need to be ironed. As a catch-all for mismatched socks and small items that are found inside the washing machine. To organize cleaning products.
Iron and iron board: you can hang them in a wall with a wall-mounted iron and ironing board holder, or you can store them inside a small closet. Having a small work table whose top can be expanded is great to have in a small laundry room where you don’t have enough counter space. It can serve to fold and organize your clean clothes.
Liquid detergent: you can store your liquid detergent inside a beverage dispenser, that way it’s easy to pour and it’s easy to refill.
Powder detergent: you can store it in a glass or plastic container, that way you always know the amount that you have left.
Mop and broom: you can store the mop and broom and large items that you might have in a small closet or you can place a Slatwall with hooks and attach them to the wall. You can also mount small container boxes in that Slatwall to store smaller cleaning items.
Linen closet: organize your linen closet if you have one in that space, a narrow bookcase will do. Put all of the towels and sheets together according to their use. You can have your bath towels rolled up inside a basket and on a shelf. Keep each set of sheets grouped together in a pillowcase, this way it’s easier to grab them at once. Add hanging bars: put tension rods on unused high wall space. It works for air drying and for hanging recently ironed shirts.
Floor drain having: a floor drain is not required by code but it’s a great idea to have one, especially if your laundry is not on the first floor. Since the washer uses 40 gallons of water every cycle, a floor drain will prevent damage to the house from a flood. Add some decor: the laundry room doesn’t have to be boring, add a nice wall color like light gray or light green, make it nautical or add colorful wallpaper. Put some artwork or a funny quote regarding cleaning and a nice lamp. Those decorative touches will make your laundry chores more enjoyable.
- Clean inside your washer and dryer regularly. The washer tends to have a soap buildup while the dryer is constantly accumulating lint, and wipe over the surfaces.
- Mop the floors and dust the shelves.
- Rinse the utility sink.
- Open the windows and let fresh air come in, if you don’t have windows, have a fan or a vent so that the room won't become smelly. You can also plug in an air freshener.
- Have a recycle bin in your laundry or your garage where you’ll put the empty detergent and other cleaning products’ containers.