Whenever it comes to getting stuff done around the house, in the month of January I get more done than the other 11 months combined…which it makes it secretly my favorite month of the year- I think other photographers hibernate during this time, which maybe I will do next year. Anyway, last January I tackled finishing the kitchen and also finished our master bathroom (which I have yet to finish painting the doors, so it hasn’t made it’s blog debut yet).
So, as soon as the holidays were over, I got right to work on the laundry room. Whenever we were in the very early stages of remodeling our house we moved the access door from the garage to the backside of the kitchen (see below)…I’m all about a practical layout.
Because we wanted to move the door, we had to take out the original built in cabinets pictured below. We fortunately saved the doors from it and amazingly they were the PERFECT fit for the new little cabinets I made in the laundry room (more to come on that later). So now the cabinets above are gone and the entrance to the laundry room is where the right side of where they used to be. And all that extra floor space is in the kitchen, there’s a little walkway going back into the laundry room.
Now that you’re caught up on the logistics of the laundry room, here are the before pictures. You wanted the real before picture, right? Okay- here it is…But really, truly and honestly…this is the before picture. Which made doing laundry quite the hazardous chore, clearly it was time for an intervention. We’ve all been here, right? The cabinet doors you can see weren’t actually always in the laundry room, I just brought those in to start envisioning the space before starting the project. And none of those are actually the doors I ended up using.
One of the major factors with the laundry room had to do with the utilities also being in there. The hot water tank and the return air vent both had miscellaneous parts going up into the attic making it impossible to seal off that portion of the ceiling in the room. So the solution was to build a utility closet so we could regulate the temperature in the room. That’s a start. I am actually really proud of myself for this because I didn’t need ANY assistance with the framing. In the past we have borrowed my dad’s framing gun and giant compressor, and then with other projects in this house we just used a drill and long screws which is probably the most awful thing you could ever do to yourself…just use a nail gun, you won’t regret it! We occasionally rent tools and I was debating renting a framing nail gun for this little framing job…but after weighing out the costs and likelyhood that I’d end up framing something in the future, I ended up getting a late Christmas present and now we own a cordless battery operated framing gun, it is AWESOME! I feel like this may be like owning a truck and all of a sudden everybody will be asking to borrow it ;) Then there was the drywall, which once again, I had a life changing experience with! I hung all the sheetrock by myself and only needed help from Bart moving one piece into the closet because the angle was really difficult for maneuvering. The secret to hanging sheetrock by myself was these little babies-SELF DRILL DRYWALL SCREWS?!?! Gah, for real, if you have ever hung sheetrock you know how frustrating it can be. The first time we hung sheetrock 6 years ago we used nails which result in smashed thumbs, bent nails, and holes bigger than you intended in your sheetrock. Then we discovered drywall screws and dealt with the the drill slipping and puncturing the wall or torqued wrists whenever you hit the stud, it was not fun. This time however, it was like the walls were made of butter- I don’t think I ever said (or thought) a single curse word whenever I was hanging the sheetrock…and I am a changed woman for it.A closet! Yay! Oh yeah, and I tiled. Whenever we first started remodeling our house I found this pennytile on sale for $1 a square foot and they had 30 square feet of it. It’s been sitting in our laundry room for the past year and a half (under the grocery bag, behind the mop bucket, to the left of the mops and brooms…)Seriously, a total steal! I had actually intended on painting the floors in the laundry room because I didn’t want to spend a lot of money on this room that no one would ever see, but by not tiling under the cabinet or in the utility closet I was able to make it work, so now we have a fun floor! It was really nice too because I was able to lay the tile at night and not worry about the noise of using a wet saw because the little tiles could just pop off if you needed to reduce the size.
In this space below I wanted to build a simple little cabinet for miscellaneous storage and then also include a little counter top and hanging rack for laundry straight from the dryer. I drew my ideal cabinet which included standard 36 inch tall counter tops and then 28 inches for hanging room and I was going to use the left over space for upper cabinets. I went to the garage to search for old cabinet doors to see if my vision would work. I honestly couldn’t have been any more shocked to figure out that the doors saved from the former built in were PERFECT. I said it before, but seriously, I had wanted to reuse the doors to keep the same feel from the kitchen and the measurements on these doors were made for this space! My framing for the closet was based on the placement of the water tank and location of studs in the wall, so it was certainly divine intervention that these doors worked! So let’s get to work, certainly this lumber will make a lovely cabinet.
I really love the beadboard backspash in our kitchen, so I thought it would be a great look for the laundry room as well, especially since there will be a 2 1/2 feet of space between the upper and lower cabinets. Puppy break! Heidi loved keeping me company and learning how to use power tools…this is one of the bajillion reasons why we knew she was the perfect fit for our family.Woah, I feel like a lot just happened really fast…I didn’t think to take pictures of what kind of became the most impressive part about this built in. The scallops on the sides are gorgeous- all I have is my original sketch of them. I then freehand penciled the design and cut it with a jigsaw. After that I used a router for a little extra detail. They were inspired by the woodwork on the original built-in.I chose a soft seaglass green for the cabinets, it adds just the right about of color to the room. So paint the cabinet doors, make the drawers (because I threw away the original ones thinking I’d never use them), and voila! Wait, is it finished?! I originally thought so and then realized I didn’t change the hinges on the utility room door…I possibly took a several “final” photos that I had to redo because of that minor detail that only the most critical eye would have noticed.Much better, and some beautifully staged hanging clothes to demonstrate the wonders of the hanging rack. And this pretty little flower bucket from Steinmart, I’m not into fake flowers, but whenever I saw these I stopped in my tracks and grabbed one!So I guess it’s done!And this light makes me so happy! It was priced at $80 as “overstock” whenever I purchased it, I love how it completes the room!
**Disclaimer, I feel like the lines in the tile are a bit dramatic in pictures, I promise that in person the tile looks much more seamless!
Some side by sides for you-
And for you curious folks, the utility closet, and perhaps something more curious than youself…You can see the drain pipe from the water heater is really inconveniently located, but what can you do. Oh, also if you look really close, you will notice a blue bag with words on it that don’t belong to the typical furry friends you see around our house.Wait, what? Okay, so during this project I found out we had a little friend living under our house trying to keep warm during the cold winter months, so I’d like to introduce you to the first pet we adopted this year- Luis. (and try to ignore those exposed wires that say dangerous with a skull and cross bones, I know I do).Hi Kitty kitty, I feed him every morning and he waits for me to leave before crawling out from under the house- I think it’s love.Thanks for stopping by, I’ll try and paint the master bathroom doors soon and share that as well!