ARTICLE

Chic Design Ideas For Small Laundries And How to Steal The Style

August 30, 2021 - 3 min read

When it comes to laundries, good things really do come in small packages. While you might be dreaming of a spacious laundry, the truth is you don’t need that much room for a laundry that is big on style and high on function, thanks to some new innovations in laundry appliances .

More and more, homeowners are reclaiming valuable space taken up by their laundries to free up other areas of the home. Whether it’s a bigger kitchen, living room or study you’re after, your old laundry might just provide the extra space needed. With a smart layout and stylish features, a new smaller laundry can function smarter than a bigger one and still look like a million bucks.

Getting Started

Planning your new laundry can be equal parts exciting and daunting. The best way to ensure you end up with a laundry you’re happy with is to spend time measuring up your space and working out what will fit comfortably. The bare essentials for every laundry include sufficient space for a washing machine and dryer, a sink, and shelving or cabinets for everyday items, including washing powder, fabric softener, stain remover, clothes baskets, pegs, storage baskets and other sundries.

Interior designer Corinne Bolton of Elm Interiors in Brisbane recommends deciding where you want to put your washer and dryer before planning anything else. “Make sure you have enough space for your appliances, remembering most washing machines are 650mm deep and have a door at the front,” she says. “Once you’ve decided where they’re going to go, you can design the cabinetry around that.”

To Stack or Not to Stack

Washing machines and dryers, such as those made by Haier or Fisher & Paykel, can either be placed side-by-side at ground level or stacked one on top of the other. “It depends on the shape and size of the room,” says Corinne Bolton. “If you’ve got enough length, it’s good to put them under the bench and gain counter space over both.”

Stacking them, like with the LG Washtower, is a great space-saving idea in smaller laundries. The dryer can either be placed directly on top of the washing machine (usually with a stacking kit) or wall-mounted higher up. While this provides extra counter space over the top of the washing machine, stacking them allows for higher shelves overhead for extra storage. Another option for small spaces is a combo washer and dryer in the one unit.

Sneaky Pull-outs

There are lots of clever ways to save space in your laundry. Consider mounting a drop-down ironing board or cabinet on the wall, or install a pull-out ironing board under your counter. Just remember to install a power point nearby to plug in your iron.

You can also cover your sink with inserts to create more bench space and install a retractable clothesline or pull-down drying rack for rainy days.

Stylish Accents For Small Spaces

Just because it’s a laundry doesn’t mean it has to be boring. You might not entertain in the laundry, but getting the household chores done is a lot more pleasant in a room that feels good, so consider giving your laundry some personality.

Whether it’s a mermaid tile splashback, statement tapware, designer cupboard handles, feature wallpaper or pastel painted walls, choose at least one element for your laundry that will make you smile – just don’t go overboard.

“Keeping it simple in a laundry is the way to go,” says Corinne Bolton. “Don’t make things too fussy, especially if you don’t have too much space.”

“Whether it’s a mermaid tile splashback, statement tapware, designer cupboard handles, feature wallpaper or pastel painted walls, choose at least one element for your laundry that will make you smile – just don’t go overboard.”

Think Sinks

The size of your laundry sink depends largely on the space you have available and what you use it for. There’s no point in having big double sinks in a one-bedroom apartment. For a family of four, however, having one sink to soak clothes in and one for everything else comes in handy.

One extra-large sink is another option. “Some people like to wash their dog in the laundry sink, so it really depends on what you’ll be doing with it,” says Corinne Bolton.

Many are choosing to forgo a sink in favour of a machine with a soaking or pre-wash cycle, such as LG’s 8.5kg Top Load Washer – just select the “Pre Wash+ Cotton” cycle and the machine provides extra soaking and agitating time in the wash to help remove stubborn stains.

The Wonders of Hanging Rails

New laundry designs often include hanging rails, either over the countertop or in a separate open cabinet. They’re great for drying clothes, drip-drying over the sink or for storing freshly ironed garments until they’re ready to be put away.

“I’ll often design a laundry to have overhead cabinets with a hanging rail underneath,” says Corinne Bolton. “It needs to be at a certain height to be usable – ideally you’d have 800mm above the bench.” If you have your heart set on a hanging rail but have a low ceiling, consider narrow overhead cabinets instead of full-size cabinets to allow enough hanging space underneath.

Choosing The Right Cabinets

Keeping your cabinets consistent with the rest of the home will help create a sense of cohesion, but they don’t need to be exactly the same. Corinne Bolton suggests keeping with the same colour scheme and being careful with your choice of finishes.

“Avoid using timber veneers in a laundry,” she says. “If you don’t have good ventilation and it gets too steamy, they can get damaged.” Laminate is a safer option for cabinetry as well as benchtops. “Even if you have natural stone benchtops in your kitchen, I wouldn’t use them in a laundry as they’re not as durable in a utility area,” she says.

Go Smaller

If you’re really short on space, another option is a European laundry, which can be hidden in a cupboard or along a small wall. With the right appliances and some clever design ideas, you can create a dream laundry no matter the size. Visit us in-store or online for a huge range of the latest washers and dryers. For more inspiration for your new laundry, visit our home renovation ideas page.

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