Please help finalize laundry room colours and finishes

ontariomomApril 12, 2014

Hi all,

I have compiled some options for my laundry room colours and finishes. I could really use some input on my tentative options (I am in over my head with all the house decisions needed to be made). Can you please take a look and offer a vote or opinion on the colours? The floor tile as shown is really my best option as I think it is the only tile we can find that matches with an existing wall tile in a bath that is very close to the laundry room (of course I want the floor tile in the laundry to be the same as the bath floor tile). We will have engineered hardwood floor in a medium brown in the other adjoining rooms, but it does not seem a practical option for a laundry (yet it would warm it up).

I am very open to a different cabinet colour (shown is SW Granite Peak) as long as it is some sort of blue. I have always wanted blue laundry room cabinets. I am very open on the counter options. I have shown 4 options (A-C are Cambria quartz counters which is pricey for a laundry room). Option D is a more economical laminate and we actually have a table already in that laminate that could go in the laundry where the table is shown, but it is kind of boring.

The wall colour would be a white (maybe Alabaster SW).

What do you like and what would you change? Which counter would you choose, or would you choose an entirely different counter (if so which one?)

Thanks in advance!


The next two shown a proposed elevation picture of the space. We will probably nix medicine cabinet and replace with open shelves, mirror or cabinets (any suggestion here are welcome?)

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Where in the house is your laundry room located? Is it open to other spaces, such as off the kitchen, or is it closed off from the main living areas?

If it's open for all to see, I would be tempted to go with the quartz to dress it up a bit...I like C and B the best.

If it is closed off and no one really sees it ( except people doing laundry) I would save the $ and go with Formica counters. But even if you are the only one using it and the Formica is going to bother you every time you see it, then spend the $ for Cambria by all means.

I would not do any open shelves....dust collectors and they tend to look messy when random stuff is on them.

I like the cabinet looks like a deep blue gray on my monitor.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2014 at 9:08PM
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Thanks joaniepoanie for your help. The laundry room has a pocket door and it is off a bit from the great room (there is also a staircase between most of the border between the laundry room and great room). I don't expect, I will close the door every time I use it, but definitely when company comes.

I hear you on the open shelves and dust. Not sure I would want to display that much on laundry room shelves anyway.

I too like the Cambria counter "C" option. However, we are using that same counter for our ensuite, so I was not sure I wanted to repeat the counter in the laundry too.

Tonight we re-drew the laundry room. We think we can cheat the width of the interior decorative window. We have bumped up the cabinets over the counter run and sink to allow 24 inches between counter and cabinet bottom. The shelf shown above the interior window would only be 5 inches deep and used as display. The shelf seemed to us to help balance the height difference between the interior window and cabinets.

Here is the update:

    Bookmark   April 12, 2014 at 11:25PM
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I like the B cambria option--- which looks very close to the Formica. Both of the other cambria options look very busy. Are you using subway tile as in the drawing? If so I would select a gray grout in the color family of the floor tile.

Overall I think the scheme is very nice and coordinated. However, I would under no circumstances put in a mirrored medicine cabinet with your nice cabinetry--- actually I would not put one in a bathroom, even--- as that will take everything else down a notch or four. If you don't want open shelves just use another upper cabinet next to the one you have planned. But if you have babies or dogs who need to be bathed, you could put an extra deep sink there and shorter upper cabs and make sure your faucet has a spray hose. We did that,in our laundry room and it has been a kind blessing for,our backs when we have to bathe our frequently muddy dogs.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 9:03AM
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For laundry room, I'd go with the inexpensive option. Laundry room counters tend to be covered, with piles of laundry, detergent bottles, etc., anyway. Also find out what material is immune to laundry detergent that has dripped down the side of bottles.

A client of mine's laundry room is the same set-up as your drawing: side-by-side front loads to the left of the sink, etc.
However, she has cabinetry over the machines while over the sink she has small cabs up high and a rod over the sink on which she hands shirts and shorts and such to dry. Not a bad idea if you have kids.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 9:09AM
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what do you mean by an interior decorative window?
And what is that second drawing with the bins in it, is that another wall with another washer?
I am confused

    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 9:19AM
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I forgot to ask, what program do you use to do your sketches.
Very well done.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 9:51AM
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Thanks everyone for your helpful comments!

kswl: Thanks for your vote on the counter. Option B is nice. It is white with sparkles. I uploaded a closer shot of it. I am not sure it looks like the laminate though. My only concern with option B (aside from cost) is it offers very little contrast with the white machines. We are NOT going to do the medicine cabinet. Our original thought with the medicine cabinet was to try to balance the interior window -- but it did not work. See my post at 23:25 for the update.

We have bumped the cabs up 6 inches (24 inches between counter and bottom of cabs). Do you think that is enough of a bump up to avoid having the cabs in our face or bumping our head? We won't be washing babies in the sink as the youngest is 8. We also are not dog owners, but you never know what future functions the sink might be needed for.

Good idea about the grey grout to match the floors. We have not found the back splash yet. I was hoping to find one that had some grey and some white tiles. I have a sample at home of the colours I am hoping for, but not in the sizes I want. I need to go back and look for the backsplash. I have put a photo of the colours I am thinking for the back splash below. What do you think?

@Tibbrix: Yes, going for the least costly counter option is a good idea. I have heard the newer laminates are not very strong to make them more environmentally friendly. I will ask about how they withstand drops of laundry detergent, etc. Can you estimate how much space your client left between counter and bottom of her over the sink cabinets? We do have a closet (without a door) not shown in the picture for drip drying clothes as I hang around half of what I wash.

@lyban: The second photo is the other side of the laundry room. On this side there is a real window, a table for folding (or other work tasks), bins for dirty clothes and a gas dryer that is vented to the outside. Given we have a family of 6 we have two washers and one dryer in the room. Yes we are very lucky to soon have such a nice laundry room.

My DH does the elevation pictures using Corel Draw as he is very, very good at this program. It is not a program that is typically used for this function, but he can make it work for him.

The interior decorative window is a window (with decorative privacy glass) that will be used to bring some light into a windowless bath that is on the other side of that laundry room. I really like having some light in a bath, but there was no way to incorporate a Sun tunnel or a real window into this bath, so this interior window was the next best option.


What space between counter top and bottom of over the sink cabinets is best? I show it in my 23:25 Sat night post as 24 inches. Is this enough?

Here is another shot of the counter samples up close. The photo also shows possible back splash colours, but not the correct size tiles as I want larger tiles than pictured. What do you think about the back splash colours?

Thanks so much. Keep your comments coming.


This post was edited by OntarioMom on Sun, Apr 13, 14 at 11:31

    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 11:21AM
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The tops of her cabs over the sink are flush with the tops of the rest of the cabinetry, of course. I would guess that the smaller cabs over the sink are in the vicinity of 12 - 14 inches tall??? However ,I am SO bad at guessing measurements!

I do think you want some space above the sink as you are lifting all kinds of things out of that sink, leaning over it, etc.

But she also has a counter to the right of the sink with cabs over that too, mirroring the counter and cabs to the left of the sink, and then a broom closet at the end.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 11:57AM
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The formica and the B cambria are similar in that they asre the two lighter options, Ontario. The cambria is much prettier and more i teresting (of course, lol) but i do think the formica, if as durable as the stuff from the 60s, is a perfectly acceptable option.

Unless ypu really love that tile i would not use it, as it is a trend on the downswing.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 12:06PM
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I like that C tile, with the blue in it.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 12:09PM
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Thanks for your vote on the counter. The blue in it is lovely. We will get a quote on the counter cost for the Cambria, but we are really leaning towards the laminate as this is a good spot to trim costs on our massive house project. Thanks for your thoughts on the spacing between cabinets and sink area. I will try to find some GW threads as I imagine this has been discussed before.

kswl, Thanks for your thoughts on the white Cambria. I need to do some more research on the durability of laminate. We would not be using that exact back splash tile, as I agree the tile size is not timeless. It is the mix of colours (light grey, dark grey and white) that I like. Hopefully, I can find a similar coloured back splash tile in more standard subway tile sizes. I think we can afford a pattern in the back splash especially if we go for the laminate counter as there is very little pattern in the laminate and the floor tile.


    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 12:36PM
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Yes, Ontariomom, we New England Yankees have in our DNA the belief that, if you're looking for a luxury laundry room, you haven't suffered enough!


    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 12:38PM
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Tibbrix, LOL! We feel that way on this side of the Canada/US border too. Somehow the luxurious gleam of quartz counters seems out of place for me in a laundry room. The room itself with the large size and blue cabinets seems spectacular enough. It is far cry from the very cramped laundry facilities beside the furnace in an unfinished part of our basement that we have used for the last 20 years.


    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 12:46PM
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Just moved out of the New England (Boston) area and all the Yankees I knew had no problem having a luxury/comfortable/pretty laundry room if it fit into their budget ... specially if they were going to spend quite a bit of time in there doing laundry for six people.

Carol, you said the laminate was boring and you view the quartz as too nice for a laundry room. Have you looked at any other counter options? It seems you haven't found the product that fits best with your priorities/budget yet. It might just be a "laundry room", but you will spend quite a bit of time there!!

    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 2:54PM
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Thanks for your comments. We have looked at many counter options for the laundry room of a variety of price points. You are right that I did say the grey speckled laminate counter was "boring". However, now that I realized I can get some pattern from the back splash, I am okay without the pattern and sparkle in the counter. I really believe you choose one pattern in hard finishes (either floor, counter or back splash). The funny thing is, that very grey speckled counter is what we chose 20 years ago (it is called grey fog) for our kitchen (long before everyone was choosing grey). We have a table in it that can go in the laundry room under the window. It must be timeless if it was available 20 years ago, and is still available now. It will look way different of course in this laundry room as it will have the blue cabinets, back splash and tile floors that we did not have in our original kitchen. The other thing that is good about that "boring" laminate is it has no undertones in it. It is grey and white and that is it. So many of the laminates we looked at were much more multi-coloured than that.

So, if we use that laminate counter and save big on already having a table and keeping the counter cost way down, we can cover our splurges elsewhere in the home which is good. Now my challenge is to find a good back splash that is timeless, and to finalize the cabinet configuration so we can get the cabinets ordered from Sheer's (RTA) cabinets for DH to get busy assembling them.

Does anyone see any tweaks and changes with the cabinet configuration? What do you think about having subway tiles in grey (dark and light) and white for the back splash (like the colours posted in my 11:21 post today, but in bigger subway size tiles)?


    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 3:28PM
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Carol, I think all of your choices are nice and you can't go wrong with any of them.

I have granite in my laundry room at the sink, backsplash, side splash and window sill. It is right off the kitchen and goes to the garage so we see it everyday. I also put the same cabinets in there as the kitchen. I don't regret spending the $ in there as it's just part of the main level and always visible.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 3:38PM
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Thanks joaniepoanie for your encouragement.


    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 4:16PM
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It sounds like the laminate is the right choice for looks and cost ... as long as you aren't trying to talk yourself out of a splurge item and will the regret your choice later. It also does give you more choices for the backsplash. You can also wait a bit on the backsplash until all the other items are in and then it will be easier to decide if you need a quiet BS or can go with more pattern/color.

I'm sure the whole family is looking forward to enjoying the "new" house.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 4:40PM
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Thanks chispa for your comments.

You are quite right that our whole family is looking forward to having the house complete. This is an addition/rwhole home gut project that has gone on for over 2 years (we GCed all and are DIY the second half of the build). I can't wait to get cabinets, flooring and counters installed (the fun stuff)! Living in a house down to studs is the pits.

I would prefer to find the back splash right away so we can get the plugs set to heights that make sense with the tiles (minimize cuts). Other than that, we could wait as you suggested.


    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 4:56PM
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Chispa, those aren't real Yanks.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 5:06PM
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I like the laminate okay (really prefer choice b though, I just like white or light counters in my laundry or would if I had one!) and really like the colors of the example backsplash; they go well with the floor. The only thing is, if it were me and I were to use those 3 choices, I would look for a little lighter, more blue, blue-gray for the cabinets. To me the current blue-gray is rather severe --- but I do think it will look good, it is just a matter of what will make you feel best in the space you know!

    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 5:31PM
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Tibbrix, my DH's family can trace their ancestry back to a relative on the third boat after the Mayflower. If those aren't "Yanks", then I'm not sure what is.

My in-laws were very frugal and then they realized that they deprived themselves of things they could easily afford for no good reason. You can't take it with you when you die! I'm glad my FIL got to enjoy the major remodel they (finally) did before he passed away. MIL now says they were silly not to have added A/C 20 years ago, specially with FIL's medical issues. Yankee stubbornness can sometimes be hard to reason with!

    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 8:09PM
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Thanks raee for your helpful comments. I have wondered about the cabinet colour too. Initially I had chosen SW Storm Cloud which is one shade lighter on the same strip as the Granite Peak SW that I show in my pictures. However, there is less contrast between the tile floor (which I really need to stick to because of the bath nearby). So the darker Granite Peak seemed to look better with the floor tile than the Storm Cloud.


Does anyone else think I should change the colour of the blue cabinets? Any suggestions on a SW colour that would be better (cabinet maker used SW)? I think we need to paint a big board or piece of drywall the proposed cabinet colour and see if we like it on a bigger scale?

Any more thoughts on an appropriate distance between upper cabinets above the sink?

Any tweaks you would make to the cabinet configuration?

Thanks for all your help!


    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 10:19PM
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I'm back and I have made a few changes and need some more opinions. I have changed my cabinet colour to SW Needlepoint Navy -- it is lighter, less grey and a bit greener (maybe yellower) than the previous blue (SW Granite Peak). The three counters in the picture are all counters we are using elsewhere in the house. I was informed by one fabricator yesterday, that where I can maximize a full slab I will get more reasonable pricing for quartz. So, I may find if I use one of the below quartz it won't be that costly as I still have to spring for part of a slab.

Which counter do you like best now with the new blue? The counter choices are (A) Silestone Lagoon (B) Cambria Whitney and (C) Cambria Parys. Please keep in mind appliances are white.


P.S. Does anyone know if Cambria charges dearly for part slabs?

    Bookmark   April 20, 2014 at 4:36PM
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