The Essentials for an Efficient Laundry Room
Here's everything you need for a streamlined, functional space.
If your everyday life keeps you on the go, you likely look for ways to speed up tasks you need to cross off your daily to-do list. One household chore that tends to be a hassle? Laundry. Here, you can find three simple ways to help ease the clothes-cleaning process—and make your own laundry room, whatever its size, more efficient. Whether it's adding wash day must-haves into your laundry cycle, like Five Two Wool Dryer Balls (from $20, food52.com), for a better clean or sprucing up your space, you can never be too prepared. Boost your laundry room and routine with these tips, and make washing and drying clothes a breeze.
Brighten Things Up
Is your laundry area dark and depressing? A few basic upgrades can beautify this hardworking space: First, brighten it by opening blinds or swapping in LED bulbs. Better lighting is not only more pleasant, but it helps you spot and treat stains on items before the heat of the dryer sets them, says Bin Lin, director of R&D Laundry and Home Care for Henkel, the makers of Persil detergent. Also, who says this room has to be grim? Try a fun wallpaper or paint color to keep things cheerful. And finally, add a plant to enliven your room and freshen the air naturally.
Consider open shelving to allow clear access to necessities like detergents, such as The Laundress Signature Detergent ($20.55, bloomingdales.com), lint rollers, and a sewing kit. You can hide extra supplies, like the Rowenta Pro Master Xcel Steam Iron in Black ($80, bedbathandbeyond.com), in baskets and sturdy boxes. A wheeled hamper with separate sections will help you divide lights and darks. "I love to install fold-down racks for hang drying clothes," says Shea McGee of Studio McGee, who's designed a fair share of stunning laundry rooms. "They sit flush on the wall, so they don't take up as much space." Another favorite of the designer's: stylish hampers. "Hampers don't have to be ugly!" she says. "There are some good looking options out there that actually add to the design instead of take away."
Small Space Solutions
Don't have space for a full room dedicated to laundry? If your washer and dryer lives in a hall closet or kitchen, McGee recommends "creating built-ins around the closet to keep things organized and clutter out of sight." If that's out of budget, install an open shelf and use baskets, like the McGee & Co. Storage Basket (from $30, mcgeeandco.com), and cool jars for storage. When Martha transformed a pantry closet into a laundry area in her guest house, she relied on sturdy shelves and Shaker pegs to keep things organized.