When a room’s focal point is the pair of appliances that dominate it, “decorative” probably isn’t the word you’d use to describe it. But laundry rooms — or utility rooms as they’re sometimes called — are as critical as any showstopper kitchen or spa bathroom. We all must do laundry and associated tasks. If you’re building a new custom Florida home or plan to do so, why not make that room a fun place to be? Read on and we’ll help you create a laundry room that will make you want to do the laundry.
Design Your Laundry Room
Instead of treating it as a necessary, unattractive dungeon, give your laundry room the same design attention as your other rooms. What kind of flooring do you want (hint: it must be moisture-proof)? Can you add cabinets? A deep utility sink? Create a pet-care center for washing and feeding the dog? Do you prefer a stackable washer and dryer to save space, or traditional side-by-side units? Do you need a drying rack for hand-washables? Detailing your perfect laundry room forces you to make careful decisions rather than casual ones you might regret later.
Add Color, Or Not
No laundry room should be dull simply because it’s utilitarian. Flooring, storage space and accessories all provide easy canvases for punching up the color volume. And, here’s where you can have some fun. The laundry room is perfect for that edgy lemon-yellow paint you wouldn’t dare use in a larger area. Love striped or polka-dot wallpaper? Slather a lavender version on the walls surrounding your gleaming white washer and dryer.
Prefer your laundry room as a serene oasis? Neutrals rock too. But, try a warm vanilla shade of beige paint. Or, a light gray with blueish tones. Painting walls, ceiling, cabinets and baseboards the same soothing shade wraps your laundry room in calm. Those white, gray or stainless steel washers and dryers will blend right in.
Lighten It Up
Add some light, especially if your laundry is an interior room without windows. Add recessed or can lights in the ceiling for extra brightness. If you have cabinets, install under-the-cabinet lights for counter-top and utility-sink tasks. If you’re lucky enough to have a laundry room with a window, keep window dressing to a minimum and let that Florida sunshine in.
Banish Blah Appliances
You may have grown up with standard white washers and dryers, but that doesn’t mean you have to chose them for your new custom home. Some manufacturers produce appliances in bold primary colors such as red and blue, and a few offer more unusual colors such as green and bronze.
The Practical Stuff
A quick checklist: don’t cram the laundry room in your floor plan as an afterthought, then barely have enough space to load and unload the washer and dryer. You’ll also need a floor drain, plus hardy flooring material that can handle water, pet and utility-sink messes. If you can combine your laundry room with a mudroom or a home office, you’ll have an even more efficient space.
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