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Lets talk laundry

We've been doing a lot of work on the laundry room lately.  So much that it seemed post worthy!  In the last year we've oh-so-slowly and painfully:

  • Demolished the wood paneling and furring strips that held it to the block walls
  • Rerun the electrical that passed through this room in conduit with new, grounded, wire.
  • Built new 2x4 walls
  • Removed the old drain, laundry sink, and plumbing vent
  • Jack hammered a trench in the concrete for new plumbing
  • Added a new floor drain, sink drain, washing machine drain and drain vent
  • Ran new hot and cold water for the laundry sink and washing machine
  • Removed the old dryer vent that went through the window
  • Ran a new dryer vent through the exterior wall
  • Added a dedicated 20 amp electrical circuit for receptacles
  • Added a new electrical circuit for9 lights
  • Roughed in pipes for a baseboard radiator to heat the room
  • Added access panels for the plumbing and gas valves once the drywall is up

Here's how it looks:

Before - February 2011


Originally we just put four can lights in the ceiling but once we powered them up we realized the corners were super dark, especially over the laundry sink.

With the light added over the sink and things seemed better.  I had to build bulk heads on each side of the room to cover pipes and as soon as they were in, the room got a whole lot darker again.  We've realized that recessed lights, especially in a room with low ceilings, don't spread very far.  A single on-ceiling (boob) light makes as much light as 4 recessed lights.  The bulk heads (especially the left one) blocked the light from spreading so the solution was to add more recessed lights under the bulk head - that's how we ended up with 9 lights in a 10x12 room!  Here's that bulk head with extra lighting.

Why are the new lights so far from the wall you ask?  Well, let me tell you.  While I was building the bulk heads Katrina was taking measurements of the room and making plans on Ikea's 3D home planner.  Here's the floor plan she came up with.


On the far wall we're going to have the laundry sink and washer & dryer.  To the right of the dryer there's room to build some shelves that will hold laundry baskets and we'll tuck the dehumidifier underneath - it is a basement after all. There's another void between the shower wall and a box we had to frame around our main plumbing stack (it's the yellow rectangle-thing on the floor plan) that we're going to turn into a small closet for hanging Katrina's longer dresses - remember our bedroom closet is only 4 feet tall :(

Here's what this wall could look like.

The opposite wall is going to eventually be turned into some extra storage for our small kitchen.  Don't get me wrong, we're making the most of our kitchen and it's fine for every day use, but we could use a better place to store the fondu pot, food dehydrator, turkey roaster that we only use for special occasions, not to mention all the Costco food extras we like to have on hand.  The plan for this wall is to put in a chest freezer (again for some Costco deals!) with cabinets above it in the corner, then floor to ceiling (bulkhead is only 6 1/2 feet off the ground) cabinets from the freezer to the door.  This floor plan is pretty rough, in reality we'll leave enough room to walk through the door!

Oh, I almost forgot the last detail we're super excited about!  The ceiling is higher in the middle of the room - between the bulk heads - and creates a tray ceiling.  We're hoping to cover that section of the ceiling with tin tiles similar to this and put in crown molding between the tin ceiling and bulk heads.  We've liked the look of tin ceiling for a long time now and we're excited to finally have a place to use it.

Can you see the room coming together?  Drywall is coming in a couple weeks and it will feel completely different after that.  Sometimes it's hard to picture it all, but once the drywall is in dreaming big will be even easier!

Some of the details we're dreaming about include drying racks, a fun printed fabric ironing board hanging on the wall, pictures hung with pant hangers like this, an industrial laundry bin such as this, and an antique ringer/washer we found at a garage sale similar to this.  We're thinking gray and yellow for paint colors (as you can see in the Ikea Planner drawings) but we're also playing around with the thought of stripes or another fun paint treatment.

What do you think?  Are we missing anything important for a laundry room?  Can you see the vision?

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