My Frugal Laundry Room

The Laundry Room doesn’t have to be a Boring Place

The laundry room is one of the last areas of the house to get our attention. The reason is that we ask ourselves, who will see that tinny bitty place–the place where we can just dump all our dirty clothes or where we can hide a trash can. Washing clothes is never a cool thing to do in life. That’s why sometimes we are so lazy to do laundry, especially when the time to fold the clothes comes. Watching TV beats that any day. Now, let’s face it, laundry is something we have to do from time to time. There just may be a way we can make our laundry time fun.
We call our house

“home sweet home.”

Wherever we go, no matter how bad our house is, we always miss it and want to go back to it. We have an attachment to that place where we can be who we are. Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz describes it perfectly when she says:

“there’s no place like home.”

Most of the time, we like to do an activity when we enjoy doing it, when the surrounding environment sustains us. We can spend hours and hours doing things we like to do. It’s the same way with laundry. To enjoy the time, we have to attach and build a connection to where we are.

Here are a few tips we can do to change our laundry time from dreading it to loving it:
We will start by changing our attitude toward specialization. Make every place in our house as important as other rooms in the house. Treat each room equal. By adding our personality, it will make the house not just a sanctuary but also a place to retreat. No matter what the size of our house is. small, medium or big, or how much budget we have, we can always maximize decorating it. They key here is our willing to improve the quality of our life.

  • FIND YOUR THEME

Every human being has a child-like nature in their heart. Use your imagination. Do not be afraid to express yourself. Be who you are. For example: I always fantasize about living in a bird house. You won’t believe if I tell you that I still like toys even though I’m too old to play with kids’ toys. But that’s no problem at all. As long as you like it, enjoy it. It’s your house, isn’t it? I want to create my laundry room to be as warm as possible, a place where I can release my imagination.

  • DECIDE YOUR COLOR

Play with your imagination. It’s okay to play with color. But since the laundry room is a hot place, make sure to make it as cool as possible. Choose a cool and peaceful color that matches your personality.

  • REMOVE CLUTTER

Clutter is not trendy. In small place, being organize is really important. Throw away things you don’t need: empty laundry bottles, irreparable clothes and etc. Just keep things you really need. That can help you saving time and perhaps money.

  • BUILD YOUR OWN ORGANIZATION STYLE

If you think your laundry room is really tiny and you need more space and storage area, recouping space vertically is likely a better solution than horizontally. You can always build many shelves up high all the way to the ceiling if you want.

Well, let’s start our project. Above picture is an example of my 6′ X 5′ laundry room. The make over itself cost me below $40.

Here are the steps and tips how you can do your laundry makeover in really small budget.

  • LOW COST PAINT

For a small room like a laundry room, a gallon of paint is probably more than enough. Go to local Home Depot or Lowes or any hardware store and find the “oops paint” section. What is oops paint? Oops paint is the paint customers return to the store for whatever reason. The store can’t sell oops paint except by reducing the price.There are many cool colors you can pick out from the oops paint corner and the prices are usually very cheap. The regular price for 1 big can is about $25 or more, but you can get oops paint for $5, and a small can for only $1 at stores like Home Depot.The problem here is you can’t choose your own color. But no worry, you can always work with it. If you want to live in frugal way, you have to be smart and play with your frugality.

Here are the steps and tips how you can do your laundry makeover in really small budget.For a small room like a laundry room, a gallon of paint is probably more than enough. Go to local Home Depot or Lowes or any hardware store and find the “oops paint” section. What is oops paint? Oops paint is the paint customers return to the store for whatever reason. The store can’t sell oops paint except by reducing the price.There are many cool colors you can pick out from the oops paint corner and the prices are usually very cheap. The regular price for 1 big can is about $25 or more, but you can get oops paint for $5, and a small can for only $1 at stores like Home Depot.The problem here is you can’t choose your own color. But no worry, you can always work with it. If you want to live in frugal way, you have to be smart and play with your frugality.I always go to the oops corner and collect paint colors that I like even though I may not need the color at the time. I always know I will need it sometime soon because one of my favorite hobbies is changing paint colors :)

  • DPY- DO PAINT YOURSELF

A small room like a laundry room only takes an hour or two to paint. While waiting for your paint dry, you can use your time to clean your washing machine. Here’s a cheap tip to make your washing machine glow again: combine 1 full lid of bleach and 1 tsp of dish detergent. Use gloves and soft sponge to wipe the washing machine. Wait for 15 minutes before wiping it out with a warm wet towel. Guaranteed, it will remove all the dirt from your dull, dirty washing machine.

Clean all the washing machine pipes from the dirt, make sure you remove all the dirt because it can cause fire.

  • BUILD YOUR OWN

You don’t need to have an expensive storage solution. Shelves are really easy to build. You just need to buy a few pairs of triangle hooks. They cost usually under $1 each. Plan how many shelves you want to build according to your need and where you want to put them. Mark the place where you want them hung. Use a leveler for the right measurement and balancing. Remember the aesthetic aspect is important too, here. You don’t want to build them carelessly. Be professional.

For shelves, you can find ready a laminated shelve piece for about $7/piece in any hardware store. If you want them cheaper than that, you can buy a few pieces of lumber that are usually sold around $3/piece. Ask the hardware store to cut them as you desire. They will be happy to do it for you free of charge in most cases. You can always paint it later with your own color.

  • GET READY

get your screw driver and start building your own shelves.
Screw the triangle hook first in both right and left on the sign you’ve marked earlier. Then put the shelf on top of it. Simple isn’t it?

  • BE ORGANIZED

Organize your laundry stuff on the shelve.
I like to buy all my laundry stuff in the same color to match/compliment to my laundry room colors.

  • DECOARATION IDEAS

Put some nick nacks on your selves e.g. photos, frames, radio, toys, a vase of flowers, pictures of your favorite celebrity, Elvis or Lindsay Lohan for example–anything you like. There are no rules here. Make the place as warm as possible.

  • CURTAINS SOLUTION

Since I don’t like to see my stuff bare, I like to cover my shelves with curtains.
The easiest way to get a cheap curtain is goodwill or the thrift store. You should find a lot of curtains or fabrics for only $2. Or, you can always find a good bargain/sale at Wal-mart, or many other discount stores. It’s important to budget yourself. It’s not funny it only costs you $20 for a makeover and it costs you $100 for curtains. So, be reasonable.

I built 2 storage solutions, upper and lower. (Upper) There 3 shelves built vertical to the ceiling. I used upper storage to keep things like boxes and all kitchen tools that need more space. Below, next to the washing machine, I built a few open cabinets for all clothes that I need to iron soon.

And at last, the most important thing is being organized. No matter how great your room is, if your sloppy, it will look bad.
Good luck with your makeover.

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    Comments

    1. It’s nice to know how to make a not so pretty room into something with appeal. Great article.

    2. alicia thompson says:

      Hey there. I love this” how to” article, and with the pictures to go along with it, its fantastic. I know, the laundry room is usually the LAST place people think about decorating and paying attention to, but if its nice and well organized maybe people will be more enthused about doing their laundry! Plus the laundry room has alot of potential for hidaway storage.

    3. My house does not have a laundry room. There are old, steep, narrow, wooden steps to the unfinished basement, and that’s where the washer-dryer hookups are. There are no appliances – I have to buy them.
      Should I give up space on my back porch or elsewhere in the house – it’s not a very big place- or try to work with the basement? I would love to have a nice little laundry area.
      Let me hear your suggestions! Thanks

    4. Suzana says:

      Hi Palema,

      I think the basement is the best place to put your washer-dryer. I understand that you want to have a nice little laundry area, but I don’t think giving up space on your back porch is a good idea. We can decorate your back porch as a relaxing place or small retreat for you instead.

      Since I can’t see how unfinished your basement is, it’s difficult for me to suggest whether we should try to work with the basement or not. I personally don’t like to spend money. I’m a super-super frugal. I’ll do everything by myself.

      If I can see the picture of your basement, it’ll help me a lot to see whether we can do something or change that area into a nice little laundry room for you without costing you a lot of money.

      Send me the picture of your unfinished basement and back porch if you can.

      Remember if you move you washer and dryer somewhere else in the house you will need to hire a plumber and it’ll cost you another $$$

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