WE FINALLY ADDRESSED that neglected and forlorn pass through/laundry room/friends and family garage entrance/pitiful excuse for a mudroom! Yep. And it’s feeling so much more welcoming and serene now. We didn’t show off or spend a lot, and there are details yet to address (like a jute rug to layer under the small one). But ready or not, Before/After DIY Laundry Room Simple Makeover is comin’ to get ya.
Let’s Chat in My Laundry Room
Disclaimer No. 1: No stellar and inspiring blog-worthy images to share because this is one of those utilitarian, builder-grade, windowless dungeons that refuses to cooperate with light, capiche?
Disclaimer No. 2: Something possessed me to improvise a video with no rehearsing and in one take tell you in detail what we did in here. Ummmm, HEAVEN HELP US, granny is casually shooting video now? Can a podcast with riveting topics like cocktail ottoman styling or the best linen lampshades be far away?
Now I’ve shown you everything!
Is My Voice What You Expected?
While you won’t see me in the video (well, maybe a glimpse of me in my jammies in the mirror), you’ll hear my Chicago accent describe what you’re seeing.
(And no idea why the youtube version cuts off before I finish my sentence! What I say at the end is, “It’s sort of an awkard friend’s entrance, family entrance, but it’s a much more pleasant place now to throw in a load of laundry.”)
Me Rambling ’bout the Laundry Room
This 6′ x 9′ space is sooooo much better now that it is customized, functioning well, and looking a whole lot better!
Before/After DIY Laundry Room Simple Makeover
That before space was so sterile, bright white, and unpleasant that ANYTHING we did was bound to help. The challenge came when we chose to skip demolishing the closet.
1. BEHR Sterling paint / 2. Polished white marble mosaic tile / 3. Damask curtains / 4. Baskets / 5. Rope Wrapped Lamp / 6. LG Washer / 7. Hooks / 8. Beadboard Panel / 9. Portfolio Breely Flush Light / 10. Rolling Hamper
Here’s what we did instead: introduced natural elements, softened the decor, and added customized detail.
5 Ways to Introduce Natural Elements
- Polished Marble Tile. We installed a 24″ backsplash of polished marble mosaic tile behind the W/D. We didn’t tile to the floor since the washer and dryer hide it…instead, we added shiplap to the bottom 24″ of wall. See resources below/Cost: $150.
- Beadboard Paneling. For warmth and interest, we installed inexpensive beadboard paneling horizontally on two walls and capped it with simple Shaker-style MDF trim. I painted it the same bright white we have used for the trim throughout our home (Benjamin Moore White, satin). Tip: We had them cut the 4′ x 8′ panels to the size we needed in the store so we could get it home in a SUV. See resources below/Cost: $30.
- Salvaged Maple Top & 2-Tier Wood Shelf. To utilize the space between the washer and dryer more efficiently, a trip to TJ Maxx yielded a 2-tier bookshelf (I would call it a nightstand, but the tag says bookshelf) with spindle legs. I placed a piece of salvaged wood on top to reach the wall and painted it white. Cost: $50. This table is similar.
- Natural Woven Baskets. Shopping the house yielded natural woven baskets for the 2-tier shelf.
- Rope Wrapped Accent Lamp. It is possible that bringing this rustic beachy coastal rope wrapped accent lamp with linen shade into the space improved it more than anything else! Seriously cozy and eliminates the need for under cabinet puck lighting or even wall sconces because it offers just the right amount of ambience. I found a similar options HERE, HERE and HERE.
3 Simple Ideas to Soften the Edges
- Linen Curtains. I ditched the bifold doors in favor of soft curtains and wanted to keep the look cozy, un-fussy, and un-clunky. A timely stay at Storybook Cottage in Tennessee was an influence…almost every closet door was replaced with canvas dropcloth curtains! I opted for a tension rod placed at the top of the closet opening. Then I mixed two different fabrics for the panels: a luxurious Italian linen sheer (Mist -RH) and a stone-washed Matelasse with a damask pattern (TJMaxx).
- Paint Over Vinyl. New wood cabinets or door fronts would be a wonderful upgrade in here, but to save labor and cash, I painted the 21 year old vinyl cabinets (Benjamin Moore White, satin) which are in good condition. They have a softer look now, and you would never know they are not solid wood.
- Art Work With Quiet Colors. I have owned these surreal photography prints by Loretta Lux for many years – they are not real photos of children but rather are complex works of fine art. The colors are soothing, their expressions fascinating, and I never tire of the serene works.
3 Tips to Set a Tranquil Tone
- Choose a Tranquil Palette. While it may appear I painted the walls and the door white…nope. I agonized over paint colors and arrived on a winner: BEHR Sterling. I chose the paint color AFTER choosing fabric/curtains because that eases things considerably.
- Pale Blue Grey Hue. The door is painted BEHR Sterling (satin), and the walls above the beadboard paneling are 50% BEHR Sterling and 50% BEHR Cameo White (flat). If there was any natural light coming into the space, Sterling would be perfect on the walls, and I would have painted the door a deeper shade of it.
- Romantic Ceiling Light. My husband chose this Breely ceiling light with crystal beads because it is similar to those he liked in our prior home’s master bedroom closet. I may have chosen something simpler, like a classic schoolhouse semiflush light, and I certainly didn’t expect the disco-ball meets underwater meets sunburst on the ceiling effect…but it adds a layer of soft, romantic, movement and couldn’t be more different than what we had before! Watch the video above to see what I mean.
Customize With EASY DIYs
- Hooks for Closet. There are awesome options for ready-made racks and hooks (see THIS), and I brought home a few before deciding to create my own custom rack with hanging hooks to tuck inside the closet for purses or keys.
- Roman Numeral Pediment. Nothing could be simpler than how I chose to crown the closet near the ceiling. Wood roman numerals were painted white and simply rest on top of the trim. I saw this idea on Jenna Sue’s beautiful blog a couple of years back, and introduced it to multiple rooms for personality, sentimentality, and architectural interest. Choose a number which has meaning for you. I chose the year we were married.
Another Video I Made for You!
Exact Tower in Closet
Exact Ceiling Light
Similar Rope Wrapped Lamp
Shopping Resources for Laundry Room
Thanks for playing along, friends!
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Peace to you right where you are.
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First -Wow! Not sure what I expected but you sure do have that Chicaaaaah-go accent. It’s funny that when you read someone’s blog you kind of form some kind of voice in your head as to what they would sound like …… Now I feel like I even “know” you better.
The makeover is just right so fresh and peaceful ,not too much or too little – just like the rest of your home. It definitely has your stamp on it.
I knew I needed to issue a warning about the accent…hahahaha. Thanks for following along and for the kind words – so happy that pass through is done! 🙂
I’m giggling with glee! Firstly because your laundry room “before” looks so much like the laundry room in the house we just bought (which will eventually get a little cosmetic help too!) and secondly because your voice is EXACTLY as I imagined! I majored in vocal music and theatre and was taught a few things about facial structure and how it usually (not always) gives a clue to one’s voice. Of course your accent is expected knowing where you’re from. 😉
What a fun post! I do most certainly love your room’s new look….and thanks for the inspiration! 😀
Thanks for giggling with me! I had no idea facial structure was related to voice but of course, that makes perfect sense – I love the scientist in you! Good luck with your own fixer upper-ing…so glad I can cross this eyesore off the list! 🙂
Beautiful, serene refresh! Don’t you love your washer and dryer??? I have really enjoyed mine 💕
Thanks so much for reading, Beth. Yep – wasn’t willing to change them out even to get more floor space! 🙂
Wow! What a wonderful change, love it Michele! All the details are perfect. I’d like to know where are your washer connections? Mine peek over the top of my machine:-( Still waiting for the weather to cool down here in Los Angeles before I tackle cleaning out the garage in order to organize the so called laundry room.
I guess I’m fortunate that the connections are low and hidden. You’re waiting for the weather to cool…hahahaha – I can’t imagine ever saying that, but I get it. One baby step at a time, I guess. I mean it only took me 4 years to do ANYTHING to this sorry space. 🙂 On the upside, ANYTHING we do to spaces like these will be a vast improvement!
Love hearing your accent as I am from the South…adds the personal touch! Love your makeover…especially the disco ball/underwater/sunburst reflection of the light! hehe! Also love your “Im gon praise Him til Im gone” work of art! Have you ever made those to sell?! Cause I love your other similar ones hanging in your dining area too! Love your rolling laundry basket @ such a good price compared to other similar ones. And so smart to add the board on top of the table so that it now reaches the wall!! So many great ideas…all lovely as usual 🙂
Thanks, Amy – I’m not sure folks realize how vulnerable it is to put both your voice AND the most embarrassing room in your whole house! Oy! I still paint those art pieces – hahahaha – have been making them for 10 years now so let me know if you need one. 🙂
Thanks so much, Michele!
I guessed your voice would be this soft, soothing sound, so I was surprised by the accent. Then again, I find my own voice sounds different on video, than in my head. Lol
You did a wonderful job on a pass through laundry room/mud room/entry. My space is almost identical, so
I have gleamed some ideas from this post. I already have nice cabinets above my stacked, front loading machines. I love the storage underneath my stacked machines so have opted to keep those, instead of a counter stretching from wall to wall over them. Having the folding space would be nice though. Hmmm I’m now going to paint both doors in a darker colour than the walls. That, in itself, will add some style. Instead of tile,
I might wallpaper the wall behind my machines. I added hooks on the opposite wall for our everyday jackets and a fold away/fold down rack for hanging those pieces I want to air dry. I’m almost there. Our unwelcoming, tiny laundry rooms will never be a star but they will at least be a better organized, more cheerful space. Thank you for sharing, Michele.
Sounds like a smart plan for your space – I too thought about painting my bifold doors, which would have been a good improvement, but now that they are gone…we don’t miss them one bit. 🙂 I love the idea of wallpaper in a space like this! Thanks so much for reading.
Hi, where is that table from? We’re looking for the same one !
Found at TJ Maxx – this one is similar, though antique white or black rather than bright white: https://rstyle.me/+DP4r3dDpj4df0gtfoq9qaQ