Doing laundry is definitely not a favorite on my list of housekeeping chores. Hauling dirty clothes down the perilous basement stairs into our dank underground lair, trying to divide colors from whites in the dim light -- it's not something I Iook forward to.
Laundry may never become fun, but having a cool place to do it certainly reduces the overwhelming dread of stuffing and swapping and fluffing and folding.
The laundry rooms that really rank go beyond the expected utilitarian machines, stacks of plastic laundry baskets and puffs of lint littering the floor. Here are some attributes of laundry rooms you won't mind spending time in.
The best laundry rooms boast fashion. If you make it a nice place to work, you're less likely to avoid going there, right? Create a theme that fits with the rest of your décor. Country cottage? Add some pretty wallpaper and some eyelet curtains. Bungalow chic? Pick up an arts-and-crafts table for folding duties. Metal and plastic aren't the only materials in the laundry world, so upgrade to wicker or rattan laundry baskets that can double as hampers. Hang art on the wall, and add a throw rug or two. Washers and dryers have gotten a lot sleeker and more attractive, so if their style fits your décor, don't be afraid to add some flash.
The laundry rooms we love exude personality and style, but it's also important that they're hyper-functional, which means ample sorting bins and cabinet space for supplies and, of course, plenty of counter space for folding. If you have room for your ironing board and lots of hamper space, even better. And don't forget places to store laundry baskets when they're not in use.
No worries if you don't have a designated laundry room. Kitchen nooks, bathrooms and even hallways can all be cleverly outfitted to do double duty. Laundry rooms perform well with clever cabinetry solutions that can also be used for other functions of the household. For example, a hallway laundry area may have a countertop used for folding laundry by day and a buffet service for dinner guests by night. A lot of laundry areas are stuffed in dark closets or basements, and given the amount of time you spend in them, they're akin to offices without windows. Putting your laundry area in a space with lots of natural light can make the deed seem less dour. Plus, you'll be able to see the stains better.
What laundry room would be complete without a flat screen and a recliner? You probably fold your clothes in front of the tube anyway. You've got to admit, it's a great way to watch your soaps in private.
Some of the coolest laundry spaces are outfitted with computers, video games, refrigerators and sofas with lots of comfy cushions. Why shouldn't you have a place to take a load off while you're waiting for the washing machine to finish the cycle? Just don't let the even hum of the dryer lure you into a nap. You've got laundry to do!
- "Clothes Washers." consumerenergycenter.org, 2010. http://www.consumerenergycenter.org/home/appliances/washers.html
- "Lively Laundry Rooms." Better Homes and Gardens, 2010. http://www.bhg.com/home-improvement/storage/around-the-house/laundry-room-decorating-ideas/
- "Love Your Laundry Room." Myhomeideas.com, 2010. http://www.myhomeideas.com/decorating/design-ideas/love-your-laundry-room-10000001055139/