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Narrow laundry room - help needed (pics)

Posted by sotodog (My Page) on
Wed, Feb 8, 12 at 10:02

I cannot stand how our laundry room is so cluttered. It is very long and narrow. It is essentially 73 x 147 inches. The far wall with the window is obviously an exterior wall.


The kids and my husband keep their coats there. We have shoes that we need to keep in there as well as the kids reference books, school supplies and some craft items and obviously laundry stuff.


and view from other direction


We would like to make one of those walls with hooks, bench and baskets but not sure if we have enough room for everyone to get their own cubby. We also need someplace to hang clothes that we don't put in the dryer. DH wants to stack the W/D. Also, the room is 10 feet tall and not sure what to do about that but seems like wasted storage space for things that you don't need often like snow gear, summer gear.

I would appreciate any thoughts or suggestions.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Narrow laundry room - help needed (pics)

Acknowledging that moving the plumbing and electrics to the other side of the room will be a pain and not cheap, have you considered flipping the layout so your washer, dryer and sink (I'd get one with storage underneath) are on the opposite wall, then having tall shelves/cubbies down the other side in graduating depths, from shallow near the door to the kitchen (?) to nearly as deep as the space to the window where the window is. That way it won't look like a long narrow hallway down the middle of the room but everything can be contained (make the deepest cupboard part with hanging rods and keep the coats there).

RE: Narrow laundry room - help needed (pics)

I had actually considered moving the w/d to under the window and lining both sides with cabinets. The sink would have to stay on the side too. How wide would I need to leave for a walkway?

RE: Narrow laundry room - help needed (pics)

I think your laundry room is fine the way it is. You just don't need to store every coat and pair of shoes you have in there. I got one of those 24 pocket hanging shoe storage things for the back of my laundry room door. Right now hats, gloves and scarfs are stored there. One coat per person. One pair of shoes per person. I just have a big basket I toss our shoes in. Is there any room in your garage for shoes or coats? I would try to put in a few more cabinets to organize some of the stuff perhaps.

Your laundry room is wider than mine. I think you just need some organization not a redesign.

RE: Narrow laundry room - help needed (pics)

I agree that I could use organization!!! I bought a over door hangy thing but DH didn't want it because it damaged the door frame. We've had baskets for shoes but they always seem to break.

One last question is the flooring in this room. Would it look silly to be different than the kitchen? It is a separate room with a door and step down. What I am concerned about is too many flooring types in my house. The foyer is cherry hardwood, LR and DR same carpet, FR brown hardwood and the builder's linoleum in kitchen and laundry room. We are not ready to touch the kitchen floor yet. The washing machine has been leaking water so we might have to replace that floor.

RE: Narrow laundry room - help needed (pics)

Your drawing makes it look like the window extends over the dryer but in your photo, it looks like your dryer ends before the window. If that's the case and if you'd consider it, your laundry room would benefit from stacking front load machines.

What I envision is stacked W/D at the window wall, cabinets above for more storage. 24" sink cab next to W/D, 24" drawer cab next to that. Cabs above sink and drawers. Towards the door, add a 36" wide, 18" deep functional mud room storage type of cabinet, like this:

Palo Alto Residence- Mud Room contemporary entry

You should be able to stand on the bench and reach items stored in the cabinets above the bench, even with 9' ceilings. This, along with the stacked W/D, cabs above it and cabs above new sink cab uses the vertical space that is underused at present. Your floor space is overused. ;-)

On the opposite wall, install a long row of hooks for coats, backpacks, etc. Between this, the cubbies behind the bench and the drawers, there should be enough storage space within reach of little ones.

RE: Narrow laundry room - help needed (pics)

Is there any way that this could just be a laundry room, and not a catch-all for so many other things? I totally agree with the need for a place above the dryer (or elsewhere) to hang clothes you don't put in the dryer. When my DH installed one for me a few years ago, my life immediately got much easier.

If you must have other things in there, I like the idea of just ONE coat per person, others hopefully stored in closet(s), a good organizer for shoes, etc. We have an over-the-door organizer with the 'cubbyholes' which has not damaged the door. We bought it either at Target or Walmart.

Seems to me the clear stackable drawers for craft items or school supplies (can't remember exactly what you said is in them) may not be a problem if the other things didn't take up so much space.

I have a friend who is much more organized than anyone I know, and she always emphasizes going UP when there's limited space otherwise.


RE: Narrow laundry room - help needed (pics)

I see what looks like a heating vent under the window. I think that would be problematic if you moved the W/D in front of it.

RE: Narrow laundry room - help needed (pics)

So the window is 30' from the wall which would mean that I could stack if the W/D back was on the wall with the window. Not sure how much plumbing that would require. We are a family of 4 with kids ages 8 and 9. I certainly could go up as the room is 10 feet tall which might be good storage for seasonal items like snow pants and boots or swimming stuff.

What I need to store in the laundry room is:

1 or 2 (heavy/light) coats per person depending on season
4 backpacks (kids have 2 backpacks for 2 schools)
2 computer bags - 1 for DH and me
1 purse
1 dance bag - maybe could go bedroom
15-20 shoes estimate for the entire family
2 camelbaks
reusable bags for grocery store
Laundry items - detergents, iron, ironing board, rags, cleaning items

In and on the bookcase right now is school/craft supplies:
-White 3 drawer container is for pencils, scissors, glue and it works very well
-I have other plastic containers in bookcase for markers, stickers, and something else which is escaping me
-The bookcase also contains construction paper, workbooks, reference books. Reading books in bedroom.
-On top of the bookcase is misc craft supplies which could possibly go to basement. This needs organization.

I think a cubby/shelf system would work great.

lisa_a - loved the picture and I would love to do this but am concerned how to do it with the narrow room.

I keep drawing pictures using kitchen cabinets but maybe a DIY cubby system would work better.

RE: Narrow laundry room - help needed (pics)

I'm thinking of using Ikea's Expedit now. I think it will work great for the backpacks, computer bags and shoes.

RE: Narrow laundry room - help needed (pics)

That's why I only suggested it as 18" deep. I think the one in the pic looks like it's 24" deep but given how close to the doors I was suggesting for its placement, I think you'd need to go shallower or it would become a log jam area and I get the impression you're trying to correct the one you've got. ;-) Anyhoo, you should have a 43" aisle, allowing 12" for coats and hooks on one wall and 18" mudroom bench cab on the other. Just watch the aisle width close to the doors so you don't end up too tight there. Another alternative is to go with a 24" deep mudroom cab (37" aisle) and step it down to 18" as you get near the doorways.

You could stack your washer and dryer on the window wall, facing the length of the room with the sink next to it under the window with cabs above W/D and window. You could run a clothes rod above the sink (this is the location I've seen suggested for hanging drip dry garments). That does put it in front of the window but that might be okay since it's temporary.

If you go with a cabinet and sink instead of the stand alone wash tub, you can run ducting under the cabinet and install a vent in the toe kick of the sink cab (this is what we have in our laundry room).

I think you'd want to leave at least 3' in front of the W/D so that you have room to load/unload without running into something. Then hooks on the garage wall and 18" deep mudroom cabs on the opposite wall.

I have a narrow-ish, overworked laundry room/mudroom, too, so I empathize with your situation. Good luck!

RE: Narrow laundry room - help needed (pics)

Thanks lisa_a. That is a lot of good info.

RE: Narrow laundry room - help needed (pics)

You're welcome!

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