See how I transformed my small pass through laundry room into a functional and beautiful mudroom/laundry room! I’m sharing all the details on how I added storage and maximized the functionality of this small space.
It’s been 4 months in the making but I’m so excited to finally reveal my new and improved mudroom/laundry room!
If you want to get caught up on the progress of this room you can check out the posts below:
Let’s look at a little before/after of this small but mighty space:
The before was just a blank, empty room. The connected bathroom was also in need of some refreshing. Luckily the walls, tile and doors were all in great shape and needed minimal improvements.
Huge difference, right? It doesn’t even look like the same room!
The transformation took months because I did most of the work myself. In between shuttling kids to school and cleaning and making meals I was cutting wood, painting trim and building shelves. It was a wild few months!
The most important thing for me in this whole remodel was figuring out how to add storage. With a small house we can never, ever, get enough storage for the everyday things and this empty room was just the place to add functional storage.
The goal was to create a mudroom zone with lots of hooks for coats, hats and backpacks as well as a laundry zone with storage for cleaning and laundry supplies. Each zone would have a mix of concealed and open storage in order to make it easy to get in and out and find what we need in the process.
The Mudroom Wall
Using primed boards and shiplap, I created an accent wall along the window wall. The natural ledge from the cement foundation created the perfect shelf edge for mounting matte black coat hooks. We now have 10(!) hooks for hanging all the coats and bags our family hauls around each day.
For added storage (and a place to sit while putting on shoes) I placed an IKEA Besta unit that I purchased secondhand along the coat hook wall. Two black wire baskets hold hats and gloves and leave a little space to the side for the kids’ boots.
The wire basket makes it easy to see what is inside. No more frantic searching for hats and gloves!
For all other adult accessories and off season hats (think baseball and sun hats) we have a woven lidded basket that sits just to the side of the bench.
The Deep Storage Cabinet
I knew we needed to add cabinets to this room to hold all the laundry and cleaning supplies, but I had a really hard time figuring out where I could put cabinets. The wall has a bit of a zig zag, as does the ceiling, making it hard to place cabinets above the washer and dryer. I spent a lot of time on IKEA’s website looking at cabinet dimensions and storage closets (like the PAX system). Ultimately, I decided to go with a tall appliance cabinet with Axstad fronts from the SEKTION kitchen line that fit nearly perfectly under the low ceiling in that part of the room.
The dimensions of the cabinet are 24″ by 24″ by 80″ and the deep shelves provide fantastic storage. It’s wide enough to store laundry baskets on the bottom and all my cleaning supplies, paper products and beach towels.
I’ll be sharing more about how I organized this cabinet later in Part 2 of the reveal so be sure to check back in to see all the beautiful and functional organization that this cabinet provides.
The Floating Shelf
Since hanging cabinets above the washer and dryer wasn’t an option, I decided to fill the space with a DIY floating wood shelf. Turns out it’s the perfect place to place my glass jars of powdered Tide and Oxi-Clean, both of which I reach for frequently.
This shelf was so fun to build, but I was really stressed when I was hanging it! I was so worried that I was going to drill into a water pipe that I think I checked and re-checked my studs at least 5 times. Luckily when I did actually start drilling things went smoothly and no pipes were nicked!
The Axstad cabinet fronts are a bright, pure white, which once placed in the space made the off white trim (Sherwin Williams Alabaster) look dingy. I decided to give all the trim, the new 5″ baseboard and all the doors a fresh coat of paint in Chantilly Lace by Benjamin Moore. The paint was a close match to the IKEA cabinet fronts and makes the whole room look fresh and bright.
Two of my favorite features in this room are ‘hidden’ in plain sight. The first is the sliver of space between the wall and the washer. I was able to fit my magnetic lint bin and my collapsable drying rack in this space without having either be eyesores. They are super easy to access, but hidden by the washer from most angles.
The second is my over the door drying rack. I’ve used this for over a year as I wash and hang a load of “hang dry” items each week to prevent shrinking and wrinkles. It’s so easy to hang items as I pull them from the washer and they all dry nicely concealed behind that door that is open most of the time.
Along the way I made a few design changes, as often happens when you start a project. I originally was hoping to create a moody laundry room with dark inky black paint on the wall or a matte black flat panel on the cabinetry. However, every time I pulled samples into this room it just felt so dark, like a black hole. This is a basement after all, and the only source of light is from a small window.
Even though I love a cozy dark color, this room just kept telling me “light and bright” was the way to go.
Black wire basket from Walmart but not longer sold. Here’s a similar basket from Amazon
Woven basket (purchased at Ross) Here’s a similar basket from Amazon
Finally, a functional room!
We have fully embraced having a mudroom and have been working on changing our habits so we enter and exit through the garage. Let me tell you, this has been life changing. No longer is our tiny split level entry clogged with backpacks, shoes and coats! We have more than enough hooks for all our things and a real home for hats and gloves.
Plus, doing laundry in such a beautiful and functional space has completely changed how I feel about my most dreaded chore. It’s just so much more enjoyable in a pretty space!