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Designing our Laundry “Room” + The 7 Things Our Contractor (and Plumber) Told Us To Consider



image via delikatissen

WE’RE BAAAAAACK. Yes. Somehow we are not done with the mountain house (that’s an inspo photo), and I want to celebrate its return with one of the more boring but useful rooms to talk about – the laundry closet. While I truly want to avoid spending one more penny or creating any more dust, it seems silly that we never finished the proper laundry closet. How are we living up there now you ask? With this cute little laundry closet on the bedroom/second floor (best decision I ever made – all sheets, clothes and most bath towels reside on this floor).

Emily Henderson Mountain Fixer Upstairs Laundry Closet Current Photos 2 Horizontal

She is little, but it’s pretty great, thus the procrastination to put in the real one on the first floor. We rarely have more than one family up there at a time (it’s a rule) and well, being on that floor makes it SO easy. But a larger one is needed because we have nowhere to fold clothes and often just dump them on the floor, getting mixed in with the dirty clothes. Plus during the summer the beach towels do pile up (although our neighbors might tell you that we let them dry on the front porch railing, but we would NEVER do that. They are liars).

Currently, the first-floor laundry closet looks like this:

Emily Henderson Mountain House Laundry Closet Current Photos

It’s pretty cool. And no, we don’t need the storage – we have a big garage. I just haven’t organized it because I don’t feel like it. Hot Tip – you can just shut the door on all your problems if you don’t want to look at them and they simply go away!

So there are some challenges that we have to deal with but nothing too annoying –

  1. The hookups are a bit high which my contractor did intentionally to make them easy to access (smart) but of course we don’t want to have to see them and they are in prime backsplash position.
  2. There is a bump-out on that side that makes it slightly challenging.

So we asked our contractor to help us give you guys some tips to avoid some sort of inevitable mistake. Here’s what he said:

Mh Laundry Room

Ok, that’s the technical stuff, let’s get back to laundry closet porn.

Emily Henderson Mountain Fixer Laundry Room Inspiration 02
image & design via tidbits

Laundry closets are already at a deficit, and it’s hard to compete with the (ideal) bigger and better laundry room. Generally, the needs are more storage for cleaning supplies, space to hang clothes, and a place for a laundry bin (duh). But also we want it to look good.

Here are some inspiration photos we went off of:

Emily Henderson Mountain Fixer Laundry Room Inspiration 03
image via magzhome

I love the access of the open shelving but fear the visual mess (so does Brian)…

Emily Henderson Mountain Fixer Laundry Room Inspiration 04
image via rengusuk

As we were designing this space we considered these seven design elements – consider these potential missed opportunities that you should implement if you can.

7 Laundry Room Design Elements to Consider:

– A place for laundry bins or a custom cabinet pull-out with a detachable canvas bag.

– A hanging rod or built-in drying rack.

– Surface to fold your laundry (question: does anybody actually fold clothes in their laundry closet?)

– Storage for all your laundry needs (ie. detergent, wool drying balls, bleach, etc.)

– A fold-down ironing board or somewhere it can tuck away.

– If you have a larger space consider a sink to pre-soak items.

– A good place for all those extra household items: broom, mop, step ladder, or cleaning supplies.

OK. Back to MY design.

We have three (fine, maybe four) different design options:

Option #1: Pull-Out Hamper and Detergent Rack

Emily Henderson Mountain House Laundry Sketchup Design Side By Side

In this option, there is a pull-out hamper and a pull out “spice rack” style detergent drawer, with an awning cabinet on top. There is a counter for folding, although I know that we likely will do it in front of the TV. However, I really like the option to hopefully keep my clean and dirty clothes separate:)

Emily Henderson Mountain House Laundry Sketchup Design Details Awning Cabinet

Emily Henderson Mountain House Laundry Sketchup Design Details Side By Side

I love this version the most, visually, but the problem is that you need a liner for the pull-out hamper because of wet clothes/towels, and that liner would need some sort of track to keep it in place. So as Julie and Velinda were working on this we realized that spending the money/time to customize the track seemed like an over-design. We could put in basically a plastic garbage can insert, which is something we are exploring, but again – is this necessary?? If anyone has any suggestions for this please let us know.

Option #2: Empty With Space to Put a Rolling Hamper

Emily Henderson Mountain House Laundry Sketchup Design Rolling Cart Side By Side 1

I really want “the laundry bin” to be easy to throw dishtowels and beach towels in. This seems like a potentially good option.

Option #3: Cabinets to Hide Rolling Basket

Emily Henderson Mountain House Laundry Sketchup Design Rolling Cart With Door Side By Side

As I am writing this I’m realizing that if we put a cabinet front on it then it would look better, eliminate any visual chaos and still be easy to access. But look at all the valuable space under the actual bin. Not the best use of space, right? This leads me to my next option…

Option #4: Lower Cabinet with Two Shelves (With or Without a Door Front) & One Large Basket

Emily Henderson Mountain House Laundry Sketchup Design Cabinet Open Shelves With Basket

Ok, I really like the added shelf to maximize the space. But the other thing to think about here is that the laundry closet already has pretty doors, so I’m adding another step of having to open cabinets in order to throw dirty clothes/towels in. Is that just silly? So while it would look better to have the cupboards, it’s technically not necessary. Brian is also concerned about the visual chaos and wants a lower cabinet door. I’m torn because it feels like it adds an unnecessary “extra step” to get to the bin and let’s be honest… it’s more expensive.

So here are my questions – many to those of you more experienced than we are with laundry closets:

  1. Is this the best design for function? We could add more shelves of course, but then not have anywhere to hang clothes…
  2. What is our general feeling of top-loading versus front loading? Our washer/dryer in LA is front loading, side by side and we have to keep the washer open to help it dry out so it doesn’t grow mold which I guess is typical of front loaders (also our plumber told us that we are ALL using far too much liquid detergent in. Once we cut it back to about 1/4 as much, it helped). This is why we did a stacking washer/dryer with a top-loading washer for our upstairs laundry closet. Please do tell…
  3. What is your favorite brand of washer/dryer? We can also go smaller in size than this up there, which I’m tempted to do and then free up some more space for folding and storage. Do we NEED a big washer/dryer? I suppose not since we’ve lived with just that small one all summer. Thoughts?

Ok guys, let’s talk laundry.

Fin Mark


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I would go 100% function (i.e. not worry abt visual clutter) since it has doors. You definitely need a surface whether you fold there or not. I would pic open shelves with laundry basket and/or roll out hamper.

I keep a decorative hamper in my kitchen off in the corner near the trash can for dishtowels. It’s a life saver, but it looks pretty.


My thoughts are, opening a closet door to then open a cabinet door, to then have to pull out a laundry basket are way too many steps to realistically put your dirty clothes in there. They would probably end up in a pile somewhere else (at least in my house they would! Lol) I would vote for the simple open under counter space with the laundry bin. I think it looks great that way! When it comes to dirty laundry, I think function needs to take just as much precedence as design/visual asthetic, since that area needs to work hard… Read more »



“…opening a closet door to then open a cabinet door, to then have to pull out a laundry basket are way too many steps to realistically put your dirty clothes in there. They would probably end up in a pile somewhere else…”


Agreed. Layers of doors is too much work.


Option #2 gets my vote.


I have a basement laundry room and actually love the ritual of folding wherever my daughter is. She “helps” and it’s adorable.

Loveley of

I had to stop reading to comment about the part about drying beach towels outside on the railing. W T F. how is this even a problem? i get that you were prob being sarcastic and that you actually DO do this, so this isn’t really directed at Emily. But, my question is to the general public? WHY is it such a problem to use natural energy (the sun) to dry your laundry outside? It’s environmentally friendly. I know most HOAs ban it because it makes the place look “lower class” because it implies that you can’t afford to dry… Read more »


My thoughts EXACTLY.


I grew up in a rural area in a family with 7 kids. My mom hung a lot of laundry outside when the weather allowed it–hello, fast way to dry, plus saving energy and life of your appliance, and bonus, the SMELL! Nothing smells as good a laundry dried on the line. I live near Chicago, in a tight city lot–30 feet wide. But we have a long narrow yard, and I have a retractable line to pull out from the garage (we have alleys) and attach it to a tree. I use it for sheets (gotta have a prop… Read more »


I live in a beach town and hang our wet towels on our front porch rail. They are beach towels that do not have to be washed everytime. Also, don’t want to put wet towels in a basket cause they get stinky!!

Loveley of

Also, now that i’ve read the post, I’m loving these options. We are working on our laundry room right now. Thanks for the ideas.

haha. Ok, obviously I don’t see it as a problem but one guest made a comment about how annoying it must be for neighbors to look at – aka messy and sloppy. We would do it in back if there were a railing, but the railing out front is just so easy. we will continue to do it because why would i wash/dray towels daily and also bring that sand in …..I see no problem with it, but technically it might be an eye sore to some ..

Karen Weiss

Is there a spot that you can hang hooks on outside that gets sun? We put hooks outside as you walked to the front porch after returning from our neighborhood pool; it looked cute and intentional. It was usually so hot they dried within a day on the hook so we just grabbed and go the next day.


THIS! We hang up our laundry to dry most of the year. (I live in a place where it doesn’t get that cold in the winter.) It’s better for the environment and it’s better for the clothes (they last longer). And like someone else said, nothing can beat the smell of hanging things up to dry. I live for clean sheet day when I can climb into a bed of clean sheets that have been drying outside. Okay. That sounded weird.


Why not an option with both the washer and dryer on the same level? If it was my house, no one would carry their dirty clothes to a downstairs laundry basket, but then again we have two high schoolers. We also create more laundry than the space that you have allotted, probably because we don’t do laundry daily, but instead 3-4 loads in a row. If you are hesitant to go side-by-side, because the doors have hinges on the same side, look for units that have reversible doors and set them up like French doors. We have our laundry off… Read more »


I’m also genuinely confused and interested by the importance you are placing on having a laundry basket in this location. Am I doing laundry weirdly?! I too have a downstairs laundry closet. I have the hanging bar, folding surface and supply shelf. But it never occurred to me to have a laundry bin built in. Now I need to know . . . what goes in it?! Am I missing out?!

Amelia Tuel

I don’t think the Laundry basket in here would be for the everyday personal clothes laundry. I think she’s imagining it for hand and dish towels from kitchen/half bath as they need replaced or maybe the random pair of socks or sweater you are done with but don’t want to take all the way upstairs to put in the laundry.

@amelia you are right. its just easy access to ‘throwing in’ which yes i could also do into the washer. i’m still learning and figuring it out but point is that I want it easy to access.. thanks for your imput!


Completely agree. All of my laundry hampers live elsewhere in the house and they only come to the laundry room when they need washing. I had a side by side laundry closet, full width counter for folding, two hanging cabinets on each side with a hanging bar in between. I LOVED that setup in my last house (I designed it). And I even put pull out drying racks just above the units/below the counter to let clothes dry flat tucked away so my counter was still useful. And I absolutely folded all clothes there in that space. With a big… Read more »


We have a 3 bin laundry sorter in our laundry room and I LOVE it! When it’s time to do laundry we bring all the hampers to the laundry room and sort in to loads using the bins. I wouldn’t be able to function without laundry baskets/bins of some sort in the laundry room!


I get the laundry hamper here in this case – for beach towels, wet winter gear, etc. I don’t think it’s really for everybody’s daily clothes. I often wish I had space for a hamper in mine (in my regular house) for things like that blanket that got spilled on but can’t go in the washer yet because there’s a load in there, or when my husband brings in messy towels from washing his car or cleaning up after mowing the lawn, but at the moment I at least have space for a small basket to toss some of those… Read more »


this is where to go eco friendly. no cabinet doors, open shelves, slightly recessed to allow for som hooks for hanging things on inside of doors, movable baskets , (one wet one dry?)that fit on shelves. No tile, paint;wallpaper( w left overs?) the back wall before shelves installed. and a clothesline outside and possible one retractable over a shower? visual clutter? .. thats why god invented baskets.( and of course god is a woman!!

OOh i love this. you sound VERY assertive and would love for you to come over and just tell me what to do. I will say that we have extra tile so that wouldn’t be a waste and i’m hoping that we have enough remnants from our stone as well. def no bottom cabinets doors …. and i’ve also been toying with the idea of hooks but not sure what we would actually hang on them. we have a garage for tools, etc, so i’m not sure we need them …


1. Love the inspiration pics but also believe you can have beautiful + functional. You will also adapt to whatever function you have. When we renovated our laundry room (which is also the powder room on the main floor, thank you 1960s floor plan) I took the overhead cabinets out and went for open shelving to give more airiness. I have 2 baskets – one for stain stick, wool dryer balls, etc. and one for extra toilet paper – and all my laundry soap actually lives in the cabinet under the sink. What I don’t have is any counter space… Read more »


I’ve had 3 houses, each with a different design of laundry room; while raising 2 kids. I think your best option for function would be using the plastic laundry basket but without the upper shelf and without the extra cabinet door inside the closet door. This will give you good vertical clearance above the laundry basket that in my opinion will be critical for the good function of this laundry closet. Reasons are: 1) You want it to be super easy for your kids (and you and your husband) to toss in dirty clothes and towels – and kids especially… Read more »

wow, thank you,. that is seriously a lot of good advice in one comment. i’m taking you up on so much of it. thank you, .xx


Great idea with having the 2 vertical bins!


Oh, what if the counter could be lifted up (like on a hinge)? Then you could keep it up when the counter isn’t needed, but set it down (over the laundry basket) when you do need counter space. I also think kids/husband are slightly more likely to lift up a counter to throw in laundry than to pull out a basket, and then you have space for overflow if necessary. Probably talking about a wood counter in this case, rather than a stone one, because of the weight. But it would sort of be best of both worlds!


I second the use of sorting baskets for dirty laundry. We keep 2 tall ones purchased at the Container Store in our second floor laundry, right next to the kid bathroom, and everyone sorts their dirty laundry after their bath. So easy to see which load needs run! Might not work in your situation, but helpful to other readers. KC’s point about open baskets to pile it all into might be a perfect solution here. Just wait and see how big those snow pants get with teenagers!


We recently acquired a front loader washer/dryer from Craigslist. We love it! It’s a 5 year old LG set, standard dimensions, and works fabulously and uses much less water than our top loader. it’s even big enough that we just washed a queen size down comforter in it with no issues! Previously, I was team top loader all the way. I used the top loader to soak stubborn stains and haven’t found a good equivalent for this for the front loader. But since you have a top loader upstairs, you get to have both! The amount of water that the… Read more »

Caitlin Higgins

Ooooooh, I LOVE this idea of a slide out shelf. I have one of those fold out ironing boards in my kitchen and agree that being able to look out a window would be preferable to staring at a wall while folding.


There are HE top loading washers now that spin the clothes almost completely dry. I have one that isn’t even fancy, it’s a Kenmore with no bells or whistles because I repair my own appliances and didn’t want to deal with computer problems, and I can hang my few rayon and polyester shirts right out of the washer. Everything else get loaded into the dryer my husband has owned since about 1998, which is also a not-fancy-Whirlpool, and my drying times have been cut in half since we got this new washer a couple years ago. In half! I can… Read more »


If you love your laundry upstairs, install a stacked W/D up there that can handle big loads of towels and sheets and figure out a better system for sorting and folding somewhere up there. Move your existing unit to the first floor for smaller loads. No doors behind doors. You already have those gorgeous reclaimed doors – use them!


I would def keep the large capacity machines–how lovely to do a couple loads of towels/bedding at the same time right before you leave for the weekend. We used the lower-height rolling utility cart like you have pictured, and installed a shelf just below the countertop….it added a ton more functionality to our tiny laundry room…I use the shelf for sorting folded clothes and as a drop station for junk found in pockets.


Consider a dry bag. I cloth diapered and lined my dirty diaper basket (which was essentially a hamper) with a dry bag. You throw the entire bag in the laundry.

ooooh! this is a great idea!! thanks, EW!


Option #1 is best. You have room to fold and hang, store laundry supplies and a hamper!!


I’ve never in my life folded laundry in my laundry room as it’s a pretty boring and not very engaging space. I fold in the bedroom where the laundry goes or at my kitchen island – whichever place I’m at my laptop is with me and I have some show or video playing. Same with ironing – I carry the ironing board from the laundry room to some other place. I do have a laundry bin in the laundry room but the only things that end up there are things that need to be washed separately for when I get… Read more »


Yes, this! I’ve always wondered if people really took their daily clothes and put them in the basket in the laundry room. Since I was a child each bedroom had a hamper for clothes. Still do that today. The master bath has a small basket for dirty washcloths and the kitchen has a small basket for dirty towels and cloth napkins. When the baskets are full–time to do a load and they get carried to the laundry room/garage. For me, must-haves in a laundry room would be– a place to keep hangers, a rod to hang dry clothes and a… Read more »


Yes. Each bedroom has a hamper, and then there’s a hamper in the bathroom. I can’t imagine getting kids (or myself) to carry each item of dirty clothing as generated down the hall or down the stairs to a different room. In real life they’re going to be kicked into the corner or flung over a chair.

With sheets they just are stripped off the bed and thrown directly into the wash.

ok all so good to know. that kind of experience you can’t predict so THANK YOU. xx


We fold clothes in our laundry closet 95% of the time!


The Container Store has metal clothes baskets on wheels; they allow the clothes to vent. They may work to roll in and out of your cabinets, if you need another option.

thank you for the tip, Brandi 🙂


I’m putting a pull-out able in my laundry room. Something like this:

[…] {$excerpt:n} Source: Designing our Laundry “Room” + The 7 Things Our Contractor (and Plumber) Told Us To Consider […]


I vote for #4 with no cabinet door because I’m having a hard time understanding the need for a cabinet door if you already have a closet door. I’m also curious where you’ll be storing your vacuum cleaner once you turn this closet into a laundry area? That’s one problem I always have–where to put the dang vacuum cleaner! As far as brands, I have a Kenmore front loader and love it. Lastly, I vote for wallpaper over a tile backsplash.


My only thought (speaking from experience) is that the third option might lead to mildew. We have canvas hampers for my kids, and when they throw in wet towels and whatnot they sit at the bottom and there are mildew spots on them. We can wash them but they’re still stained. I think I like option 4 best, but with no door in front … two baskets that will hold the clothes but are easy to access.


While I love shutting a mess behind a door, your the risk of dirty (damp, sweaty, funky?) clothes getting even grosser behind a cabinet door. Get an attractive hamper or laundry basket that has ventilation to make sure your dirty laundry has room to breath before it gets washed. As far as the pull-out “spice rack” for detergent goes, what kind of detergent do you use? If you use powder pods (please don’t), it may work; but if you get the giant jugs of liquid detergent like most of us do, you’ll have to remove the jug to dispense it… Read more »


I just got a new whirlpool washer that has a “load and go” feature – you pour a large amount of liquid detergent in a drawer at the bottom and then don’t have to add it for each load. It is AMAZING. Sounds silly but not having to add soap every time saves like 5 steps: pick up detergent, take off cap, open detergent drawer, pour, close drawer, put cap on bottle, put bottle back on shelf. Actually 7 steps. Admittedly VERY small steps, but not having to do them each time is pretty lovely. I don’t understand fully why… Read more »

that “load and go” feature sounds ahhhmazing !!! game changer for sure. I am a big fan of saving any time I can while doing laundry


I have a Bosch front loader(discontinued). I keep a microfiber towel draped over my giant jug. Wipe the rubber seal dry when I am done washing for the day. It doesn’t get dirty unless I washed a tissue. The microfiber dries fast.


I like them all, but the rolling cart would be too much to pass up! Any thoughts to having both a first and second floor laundry? It seems quite luxurious, but also very practical.


I’d go with Option 2 WITHOUT DOORS and instead of a rolling cart underneath, I’d do two shelves for two laundry baskets (darks, lights). In my house if someone had to open a closet, then a cabinet door to put dirties in the laundry basket, we’d always end up with a pile on the floor instead. I like the ability to hang some things but I have NEVER folded in my laundry room. I always fold in the bedrooms so the clothes can be put straight away into drawers. Finally, top loader 100%. I had a front loader and just… Read more »


I’d go for side by side as well to get more counter space. You could try a folding laundry rack maybe like this to give you more room for cupboards


You need regular/full size washer for the times you need to wash and dry your towels, sheets, comforters, blankets, camping bedding, etc. So in my opinion it’s better to have less expensive but normal size equipment. If you won’t wash too often then you don’t need the most energy efficient equipment either. I’d do side by side setup if there’s room because the top could be used for folding or temporary place to keep the next load of laundry. I’d prefer that to putting baskets on the floor.


I’d hate 2 doors. Skip the second door option. I’d do 2 basket that slide in, not rolling) and have have Top be dirty and bottom be clean folded clothes. I’d do stack front loaders. No went back to a standing washer with an agitator and hate it. It rips up my clothing. You can do a sanitizing wash once a month and clean the Front loader washer drain line once a month and it won’t stink. Usually, the smell comes from poor maintenance. Maybe recess it enough to leave the door ajar. Also, I put a dehumidifier in my… Read more »


I LOVE my Speed Queen. Made in America, super heavy duty, amazing warranty and only sold through independent stores. Our clothes (including 2 small messy kids) have never been cleaner. Seriously, I’ll never buy another brand.


Yes, when we bought ours we were told by the independent seller that was the brand that many hotels use- and you know how much laundry they do!
He also admitted that he almost doesn’t like selling Speed Queen because he never gets calls for a need to come service them ( that was also part of his business).
I vote top loader – no mold

I’ve heard this, too! our plumber told us this was the best as well. VERY good info ladies, thank you 🙂


Also, the version I got is more like the ones we had as kids- just a dial on the washer and dryer- no digital anything- less to break!


I second the speed queen washer! I have the front loader and love it.

Liz Garner

Side by side and three baskets on the work top for white darks coloureds! Sling them straight in the right one, no sorting, immediately obvious when you have enough to put a load on! And work too is there if you need it. I crave this creation I did in my old house.


#4 With a door is by far the most functional and beautiful. Freestanding baskets > pull out hampers EVERY TIME I promise it’s better.


I love our whirlpool duet front loaders, I’ve read to keep those doors cracked so try to when I remember but definitely not always and thankfully, this far we haven’t had any issues with mold. If you’re using these specifically for towels I would go with the larger size as beach towels take up so much space and I don’t think you’ll ever regret going larger!


I think the shelf space for laundry baskets a better option than the cart with wheels, you can take the baskets anywhere. Skip the door, and hang a pretty curtain in front–easy to open. I never personally bundle wet items–the stink grows immediately. I hang all the wet towels and work out clothes until they are dry before putting them in a hamper (I have the luxury of space in an unfinished basement, but I also hang on hooks in the mudroom). Consider a free standing dryer rack in your garage, or hooks on the wall work too. But the… Read more »

thank you for mentioning brian. and thank you for reminding me that i’m this close to our kids helping us fold clothes. growing up it was called a ‘clothes folding party’ while we watched whatever g rated musical was on our VHS. but we all did it. my kids have started to but its frustrating and I give up before them, wishing it would go faster. but i’ve got to be better about it. mating socks was kinda fun when I was little. i will force that fun again 🙂


I just want to tell you that I once hated the laundry “parties” my mom and relatives had while I was growing up. My mom is 1 of 5 and she and all her siblings got married, had children, and lived within a few miles of her parents. (Still do.) Each Saturday all the aunts and my Mawmaw would congregate at someone’s house on a rotating basis for coffee and some kind of baked good. (During school holidays it would happen on a mid-week day as well so 2 people would get visited each week.) 99% of the time the… Read more »


Option 3


What about having a split cabinet door where the top half is on hinges, so the door can stay closed but you can put dirty laundry in the basket (ala a fast food restaurant garbage can)?


Option 2, no bottom cabinet door. Anything else seems like overdesigning and not practical. I hate visual clutter but like…it’s a rolling hamper…already behind closet doors. They have rolling laundry hampers that have multiple canvas bags on one frame too if you’re wanting to separate loads.

I know. i like this one, too. i wish that i could easily take it upstairs but with the rolling castors …


I would love to have a lovely laundry room but I have never been able to find something that is utilitarian AND beautiful as my laundry has to function as a dog washing and drying room, a laundry room and a storage area! I literally wash the dogs everyday in the winter after training outside as they get really muddy! If you guys ever do a post for us with big dogs that want functional and lovely that would be great!! Think lots of dirty towels and training gear storage!


Hellooooooo?!?!? This planet needs us to dry our clothes outside as much as possible!! Dryers…are for those times when the clothes, etc. will not dry naturally…outside. What is with people?? Get with the program! California does not need dryers. Boom! Please, be an influencer for the better, the good, show people THE RIGHT WAY, THE BETTER WAY. Stand and be counted. Less plastic. Less dryers. Less emissions. Less global warming. Australia has been and is STILL burning, since July 2019! Over 1 Billion native animals are dead as a result. This is the Canary in the coal mine for the… Read more »


Honestly, having 2 sets of laundry appliances in one house seems so excessive. It made a tiny bit of sense in the Portland house because one was in the basement and one was on the 2nd floor, so there was a whole laundry-less floor in between, but in the mountain house, they’re sooo close to each other that this really seems like overkill. If you want to stop spending $$ on the mountain house, why not just… stop? One idea: You could implement the dirty clothes hamper closet part of design #4 — have a bin/basket/hamper for the beach towels… Read more »


I have an open space specifically for our dirty clothes baskets. I bought some decorative baskets so it looks pretty and hides the mess!!!


Speed queen is favorite brand and I love a top loader….front loaders are a pain in the arse.


My laundry room is very similar to the large Portland one you did, except my hanging rod (10 ‘ long- I spend most hours in workout clothes as my profession & multiple changes some days) is over my sinks in case of dripping. I have had lots of laundry areas including garage and now in my dream home I have an almost perfect set up except I HATE my front loader as it takes FOREVER to complete a load plus I can’t stand leaving the washer open even though I try to always dry the rim out & I regularly… Read more »

Roberta Davis

If you put a door in front of the laundry basket, there will not be enough air circulation to keep the dirty, damp laundry from developing mildew. I like #2.

Cris S.

If you are stacking the machines on top of each other (which is what I have, and frankly, hate) then when you build out the closet, have them build a pull out shelf in between the washer (which I assume is on the bottom) and the dryer on the top. I hate having the hold the basket up to the dryer and things fall and hit the floor (where inevitably there is dust etc). I’d love to be able to either pull stuff out onto a pull out shelf (so I can sort from there what needs more drying and… Read more »

this is great advice! definitely giving me something to think about for my future home 🙂 thanks, Cris!

Paige Cassandra Flamm

This is an awesome post! We have a super tiny laundry space and so it’s nice to see what the possibilities could be for it!



I would lean all function. You have doors on the closet to hide visual mess. And for sorting laundry, as a mom with kids a bit older than yours, you aren’t far off from wanting to teach them more household responsibility and laundry is a great place to start. My 9 year old can do complete loads of laundry. My 7 year old helps with all the steps with a step ladder side by side with me (and LOVES moving laundry from washer to dryer) and my 5 year old sorts whites/colors/towels. I value that so our laundry room is… Read more »


The cabinet doors seem unnecessary as you already have a door to the closet. How often are you going to leave the laundry closet doors hanging open so you’re assaulted with “visual chaos”?

I think the laundry rooms that are “laundry closet porn” are two things – extremely functional with beautiful materials. Ditch the cabinet doors. It looks like the wood/backsplash/counter materials will be beautiful without the extra step of a cabinet door.

Alexandra Rose

Are you familiar with these roll out hamper cabinet inserts- ? All the photos show it with a door but I would skip it in this instance since you already have closet doors.
Love these kinds of posts!


I have the rolling laundry bin, and it is super functional, even though you lose the space underneath. And you won’t want the extra door over it. Fortunately, it has a nice industrial look as opposed to a cheap plastic one. As for storing laundry soap, I have a cabinet, but I only keep my backup in there. The stuff I use regularly, I was just leaving on the counter. I finally bought a pretty lazy susan from Pottery Barn, decanted my supplies, and leave it on the counter. Much more functional and looks good, too. I’d love the clear… Read more »


I think the open shelves with laundry basket is much more functional. Also, if towels are wet/damp you probably wouldn’t just throw them straight into the hamper unless you are washing that day. If there is somewhere you could put some hooks to hang the beach towels I think that sounds more like what you need. I like that you can hang clothes, maybe you can put hooks there? I personally like side by side front loading even if you have to keep washer open. but I think this is just preference. And nope, I fold laundry while sitting on… Read more »


Maybe too late to incorporate into the overall house plan, but my nearly 100 yo house has an awesome system. There is a little door on the stairwell which is a laundry chute to the basement. Clothes and towels are thrown down and land in a wire basket which can then be rolled to the machines nearby when full. Next to the machines, we installed wire baskets….one for each family member. When laundry was folded, it was placed in the baskets. Each person was responsible for retrieving their clean laundry and putting it away upstairs. Super convenient, nothing fancy, just… Read more »

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