Our Washer Died So We Updated Our Laundry Room

Posted by Jenni Feingold on

One morning a little over a week ago I started a load of laundry unfortunately the washer wouldn’t drain at all. The pump didn’t even seem to be making any noise at all and we had just cleaned the icky drain thingy, so we knew that wasn’t it. Steve went and looked up the washer part and we found we could order a new one but because our washer is over 7 years old it would take a couple of WEEKS to get the part in. NO WAY!! I still had a little wiggle room on the emergency credit card, after some car repairs and the office makeover so I checked out online who had the best price. Lowes won with this model, I did check home depot, best buy, sears and anywhere else I could think of that was relatively close. We really lucked out when it all happened because it was on sale for 809 SWEET that was 90 cheaper at the time than anywhere else we could find the same one, plus being military we also get a 10% discount. That was a $271 total savings on a purchase we hadn’t budgeted for I can totally live with that. As much as I would have preferred to get the matching dryer our dryer is still mostly working (it takes a little longer to dry big loads and doesn’t always sense things properly so we are using timed cycles a little more often than before) but I am saving up so when ours decides to really not work anymore I can get a matching or at least similar one to the washer.

Once Steve got back from Lowes with the new washer I decided not to put it up on the pedestal the old ones were on which I had loved in the house we were in 7 years ago when we got them and they lived in my kitchen. Finn was totally delighted because he LOVES doing laundry right now and it was hard for him to work with a step stool and trying to move laundry from the washer to the dryer. Seeing just one on a pedestal made no sense so I had Steve take the dryer down too. The way the dryer sits away from the wall because of the vent though I knew we were going to lose a lot of laundry off the back. So I started looking at countertops, which were really not deep enough or really in our budget I didn’t want to spend nearly $300 on something just to hold bottle of detergent and to fold laundry on top of in a room that is only 5 feet wide and maybe 7 feet long with a pass through door even.

What was a girl to do? Head to pinterest for inspiration of course. These were my favorites 

I loved the wood and the white, the multiple shelves, the folding counter & the cabinet for hidden items.

Loved the rustic white & wood. Loved the cabinets. Wish my laundry room had a little window instead of seeming like a dark cave.

I put on my thinking cap and then remembered THIS POST. If I could just get Steve on board I knew it could be an awesome mix of a temporary mix of both of those laundry rooms.

I was going to link back and post a before picture from the house tour of the laundry room but I guess I never gave a tour of that room go figure. Here it is though because I did take one for my mom.

See its a weird pass through of a space and with oversize giant front loaders it makes it even more narrow. There is often a traffic jam here is someone is trying to switch laundry and I need something out of the garage for dinner or work. We even had to remove the door that should be (was) there when we moved in because of the washer there wasn’t clearance. Along the way since this picture I had talked Steve into painting the laundry room the same color we used in both our room & Lexi’s.

This brings us mostly up to speed for the start of this project. It is the most awkward space to try to photograph as well. That shelf is honestly mostly inaccessible for me because I need to get a stool and it’s just weird.

Steve took the measurements I told him roughly what to get based on the counter post from YHL and what color stain I wanted and bless him he even went to Sherwin Williams for me because home depot didn’t have low voc stain. I was  on sanding and staining detail.

I planned on being awesome and get some action shots of the staining and painting and sanding but, while I was sanding the sky got really, really dark and it was a race against the rain to get first coats done.  The stain is pecan from Sherwin Williams it was their house brand low voc, and the white is a semigloss for wipe down purposes. After staining I had to bring everything under the little sheltered area on the back patio so it was all squished in. Everything got 2 coats though and 3 coats of low voc water based glossy polycrylic.

The counters went in. Steve even took some  of the advice on the assembly from John and went and got himself a kreg jig and I think is looking for more projects he can use it on. With the kids in bed I pulled out the caulk (much to Steve’s eye rolling) and filled in some of the holes and caulked the seam between the boards and down the edges because I knew Steve would probably want to start the cabinet assembly in the morning before I was ready to function and had to pick up the cabinet from a far away Home Depot  that was near where he had to be at the crack of dawn for a Coast Guard function. The only thing still to “fix” is I need to pull out a paint brush and stain that little corner I made asked nicely for Steve to cut out to pull the counters forward further than he intended meaning the front would be flush with the door frame not sitting back the couple of inches behind the door trim.

We have cabinet frames! A little circle drill hole action and there are little spots made for all the hoses for the washer. This angle also makes it really noticeable that the left cabinet is 36 inches wide while the right is only 30 inches. That was done on purpose both to maximize space (the counters are 70 inches long wall to wall) and to account for where the washer valves are.

The doors went on. I was still indecisive what I wanted for cabinet knobs so the interim decision was tiny holes with some bakers twine looped through them.

I had to put up pieces of 2 inch trim on both sides and for lack of any better idea how to affix them I decided some wood glue and caulk should totally do the job. I put the glue on then carefully used painters tape to hold them there until they were dry (or the next morning) and put the top shelf piece on so they could be glued on 4 sides. A little more caulk on that and it was done.

I still wanted a shelf though. Steve was skeptical so I kept sending him THIS link until he was on board. Heck when he was at  Home Depot looking for brackets because the ones I thought I wanted that I found online weren’t  found in store I went HERE and actually screen shot the image of the bracket choices they picked from and said get me the bottom ones because I really like how they look in their kitchen.

 Look what happened! The first bracket is up! Sadly my paint wasn’t totally dry and when we used the template stick to the wall procedure it pulled a little paint where I had touched up from the removal of the other crappy shelf.

The shelf went up. I love that the one on the cabinets is about 2 inches deeper than the bracket shelf.

I found knobs. They were probably the biggest splurge on this whole project. They are glass and I found them on etsy. I love them and they match the paint color and just really make the room I think.  I even snuck in a 5th knob and put on on the drawer to my desk in my office it makes me smile.

I promptly filled up all that extra space. Now I have a place for all my table cloths that previously got hidden in the garage and subsequently never used. I have my baskets filled with my reusable shopping bags (after the truck theft and loss of one basket I no longer leave them in the truck), extra cleaning towels & just stuff that had been crammed in other places before and of course all the stuff from the original shelf is up there too.

I love how clean it all looks in there now. The little container of the BEST smelling detergent ever, while I miss its original container this one is much easier for a 3 yo to manage because Finn has taken over most of the laundry now that they are low and it makes him so happy to pull stuff out of the dryer and switch stuff and put a new load in. The best part is then he yells for one of his older siblings to come fold it.

So you don’t have to scroll here is the before again.

 The laundry room after. I can honestly say it probably wouldn’t look as awesome if not for the inspiration of some young DIY bloggers out there who have a great blog that I rarely comment on (if ever) because I know they take the time to read every single comment and don’t want to take away from their family time just to say “OMG that is so awesome”, I quietly sit back and book mark posts for someday when we will be in a house for more than 2-3 years and its really ours.

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